HAMDEN, Conn. — Behind 24 saves by Jamie Holden — the first back to back shutouts by a goaltender in Quinnipiac history — the Bobcats beat Army in stellar fashion 3-0 to complete a weekend sweep.
“The team has been playing really well in front of me. Defensively we only gave up 24 shots tonight; it kind of reminded me of the New Jersey Devils and [Martin] Brodeur.
“He has 10 shutouts this year and a lot of that has to do with his team, and I think the two games this weekend had a lot to do with my team in front of me,” said Holden.
The Bobcats got on the board first when a delayed penalty led to a perfect chance for the Bobcats to take the lead.
They did. At 9:33 of the first period Chris White hit defenseman Dan Rossi at the blue line, and Rossi fired a shot on goal that was deflected by Ryan Morton just inside the post.
In the second period, the Bobcats added to the lead when Army went on their powerless power play. With the Army power play struggling the Bobcats seized the puck for a shorthanded goal. Craig Falite was aggressively forechecking in the Army end when he picked up the loose puck and fed to John Kelly, who was streaking toward the slot and buried the puck top shelf, to give the Bobcats a 2-0 advantage.
“Craig made a fantastic play, but I think the big part of that, not to take anything away from Craig, he did a nice job, but the big thing was we finished. John took it and snapped it upstairs and that was a big goal,” said Quinnipiac head coach Rand Pecknold.
Army had a five on three late in the second period but failed to score. Army was 0-for-7 on the night and has converted on only six of 107 opportunities this season with the man advantage.
“You can’t score, and you start to press and there is no confidence, were struggling we will just have to bounce back this week,” said Army head coach Rob Riley.
The Black Knights put themselves behind the eight-ball late in the second period by taking a costly penalty. The Black Knights’ Seth Beamer was called for roughing with 30 seconds left in the period.
Quinnipiac picked up some insurance on the power play, as it took 56 seconds into the third period for Matt Craig to find Ryan Morton in the slot for a shot that kicked back out for Matt Froehlich, who stickhandled around Army goalie Bill Moss to increase the Bobcats lead to 3-0.
“I really think the third goal that we got on the power play was big … Once the game was 3-0, the game was over,” said Pecknold.
Quinnipiac mustered 11 shots in the third period, but Moss made some big saves to keep the game close.
“He played pretty well for us, but you can’t win games if you can’t score, and we have not scored in a long time,” said Riley.
The Knights have been shut out in their last three contests, for a total of 216:13 of hockey since they scored last against Air Force last weekend.
Quinnipiac will travel to Erie this weekend to take on Mercyhurst. Army will host Canisius next weekend in West Point.