TROY, N.Y. — Rensselaer’s last game saw the Engineers garner only 12 shots on goal against Massachusetts in a 4-3 loss. Tonight, the Engineers took 52 shots on goal and only allowed Iona 13 shots. And the Engineers put two on the board giving Kevin Kurk his first collegiate shutout, 2-0.
“I thought from the drop of the puck we had our forecheck, took a lot of shots and we did a lot better job in our own end of the rink,” said Engineer coach Dan Fridgen. “There were a couple of opportunities they had, but you can expect that in 60 minutes of hockey, but everyone was moving their feet, and getting after the puck and finishing their checks.”
The Engineers outshot the Gaels in the first period, 12-4, but could not score until the second.
Ryan Shields took an initial shot, but the puck caromed to Scott Romfo at the point. Romfo’s shot rebounded straight to Shields who put it past a surprised Ian Vigier for the 1-0 lead.
“We were putting some good pressure on them and I got a chance to walk out of the corner,” said Shields. “Romfo just threw it on net and I found it sitting there and I just batted it in.”
Later in the second period the Engineers made it 2-0 off of a Brad Farynuk wrist shot that clanged in off of the post and past Vigier.
“The coaches keep telling us to get it to the net and I honestly thought I was just getting it close to the net,” said Farynuk. “It was just a lucky shot.”
The Engineers outshot the Gaels 23-2 in the second period and then 17-7 in the third, as Kurk made a spectacular glove save to keep the game at 2-0 and earn his first collegiate shutout.
“It feels good, but my defense played great and I didn’t really have to do much,” said Kurk. “I just wanted to be there for them. It’s kind of special, but I’d rather have the win. I’ll take the win over a shutout any day.”
“I thought he played real strong in the pipes,” said Fridgen. “Give them credit, they didn’t pack their bags. He made a real good glove save at the end of the game. We wanted to make sure they didn’t get that goal, because they were down 2-0 on Alaska-Anchorage last week and they wound up tying the game. I thought we did a good job of keeping our composure.
“We played strong defensively and played well in our own end and it started with the goaltending.”
Iona (0-3-1) will host Holy Cross on Saturday night in its first MAAC game of the season. The Engineers (2-3-0) will travel to Army on Saturday evening.