TROY, N.Y. — Tyler Burton scored two of the Raider’s three goals in the second period to take a 4-1 lead, and then kept the Engineers at bay in the third to come away with a 4-2 victory.
It was a game of special teams, as the Raiders scored two shorthanded goals and a power-play goal, while the Engineer’s lone goals came on five-on-three power plays.
“They capitalizes on our mistakes and we didn’t capitalize on theirs,” said Engineer coach Dan Fridgen.
“We took advantage of our opportunities,” said Raider coach Don Vaughan.
An Engineer mistake led to the Raiders getting on the board first with a shorthanded goal. Jon Smyth took control of the puck at the Engineer blueline that was left by itself and found himself in a two-on-one with Dave Thomas. A quick pass to Thomas saw him beat Andrew Martin to his stick side as he caught Martin moving.
It was then the Engineer’s turn to take advantage of Colgate miscues. After Colgate went down another man on that same power play to make it an RPI five-on-three power play, Jake’s Luthi’s hard shot from the top of the right faceoff circle blazed past Steve Silverthorn.
The Engineers had chances to break the 1-1 tie with several offensive opportunities in the second period, but mistakes continued for the Engineers as the Raiders retook the lead on another defensive miscue by the Engineers. As the Engineers were breaking out of their own zone, a backpass was intercepted by Zac Tataryn. Tataryn fed Burton, who deked Martin and put it past him with a backhand for his first of the game.
Burton would score his second of the period on a five-on-three situation. As the puck was moved around Jon Smyth took the initial shot, which Martin saved, but put the soft rebound to his left and a waiting Burton.
Colgate’s second shorthanded goal of the game made it 4-1. Adam Mitchell stole the puck from the Engineer power play and came in close on Martin. His momentum saw him shove the puck past Martin as he was checked by Luthi.
“I thought Adam’s goal was huge,” said Vaughan. “Those are the kind of goals that we need to score more of. He took it to the net and the rebound was laying there and he banged it in. We got a couple of good chances on the power play and took advantage of them.”
The Engineers got their second five-on-three power-play goal in the third period with a Brad Farynuk blast from the left point, but it wasn’t enough.
Despite the loss, the Engineers generated more opportunities than the previous weekend, including a few missed empty-nets and a few posts, but it still wasn’t enough.
“We kept our legs going, we were physical and created opportunities,” said Fridgen. “We just have to keep plugging away. I’m confident that sooner or later we’ll turn things around.
“When you don’t do the little things against a good team, they come back to haunt you. I take responsibility, we’ve tried to do everything possible, and we’re just not getting the breaks right now.”
The Raiders moved into a first-place tie with idle Vermont with the win.
“It’s a funny game, right now it’s bouncing for us,” said Vaughan. “It’s tough to win on the road and we’re pleased with what’s happening here the past couple of weeks, but there’s a lot of hockey left, and you still have to win a few in March.”
The Raiders (16-5-0, 8-1-0 ECACHL) will travel to Union tomorrow night while the Engineers (9-13-2, 2-8-1).