MINNEAPOLIS — Despite controlling play for most of the afternoon, Miami led by just one goal after two periods Sunday at Mariucci Arena. But led by captain Derek Edwardson, the RedHawks scored twice in the third to secure a 5-3 win over pesky Princeton in the consolation game of the Dodge Holiday Classic.
Miami outshot Princeton 45-18 for the game, but could not shake the Tigers until Edwardson scored his 12th goal of the year at 10:30 of the third.
Skating four-on-three, Miami’s Mike Kompon completed a nice centering pass to Greg Hogeboom, whose shot was saved by Princeton goaltender Eric Leroux. Edwardson, though, was there for the rebound, flipping a backhander over the sprawled goalie from the left side of the slot.
That goal turned out to be the game winner, as Miami’s Todd Grant added a fifth RedHawk goal — his second of the game — at 14:08 before Princeton’s Darroll Powe scored on a five-on-three power play at 18:27 to produce the final margin.
“Our effort was the same [as Saturday],” said Miami coach Enrico Blasi. “We came out and played hard. I thought the difference was that we executed in front of the net.”
One day after being manhandled by Minnesota, Princeton played Miami tighter early on, and the RedHawks’ lone goal of the first period came off the stick of Matt Christie at 14:02. Assists went to Christie’s linemates, Edwardson and Marty Guerin.
The RedHawks turned on the afterburners in the second period, but saw Princeton match them on the scoreboard despite a 20-4 differential in shots on goal. Miami’s Matt Davis scored at 3:41, assisted by Kompon (his first of three helpers), and Grant tallied his first goal of the game at 17:43.
But those goals were sandwiched by two Tiger scores, the first by Seamus Young at 3:14, and the second off the stick of Mark Masters with just 28 seconds to go in the period.
Masters’ second goal of the season brought Princeton back within one going into the third, but the Tigers could not tie the score and the RedHawks pulled away late.
Leroux stopped 40 shots for Princeton. Brandon Crawford-West made 15 saves for Miami, which rebounded well from a close loss to New Hampshire the previous afternoon.
“We’ve got a one-point lead in the CCHA,” said RedHawk defenseman Ben Tharp, a Minnesota transfer who was making a bit of a homecoming this weekend. “It’ll be a nice break for us.”
The Tigers (5-11-0) open their second-half schedule Jan. 2 and 3 against Hockey East opponent Merrimack, while the RedHawks (11-7-2) resume CCHA play at Northern Michigan the following weekend.