CANTON, N.Y. — Junior defenseman Travis Bell scored his first two career goals, including the game winner with 24.4 seconds to play, and freshman goaltender David LeNeveu made 18 saves in a battle of two of college hockey’s outstanding young goaltenders to lift Cornell to a 2-1 victory over St. Lawrence Saturday night.
The teams played two scoreless periods as LeNeveu, the top-ranked North American goaltender eligible for the upcoming draft, according to the National Hockey League scouting rankings, dueled St. Lawrence freshman Mike McKenna, who is the second-ranked goaltender in the same listing.
Saint sophomore Rich Peverley finally broke the scoring ice when he went end to end and snapped a wrist shot into the upper corner just 17 seconds into the third period to give SLU, now 6-15-0 overall and 4-7-0 in the ECAC, a 1-0 lead.
Bell scored his first collegiate goal when he picked up the puck off a deflection in the short slot and snapped a shot into the upper corner at 7:45 to tie the game at 1-1. He then scored the game winner when his slapshot from the point at 19:36 hit the post and glanced off McKenna’s pad and into the net.
Cornell improved to 13-5-1 overall and 9-2-1 in the ECAC, taking over the league lead. The Big Red swept their North Country series for the first time since the 1985-86 season, the senior year at Cornell for current Big Red coach Mike Schafer. Cornell shut out Clarkson 1-0 on Friday night.
The decision was the 11th one-goal loss for the Saints this season and the first win for a Big Red team in Appleton Arena since the 1993-94 season.