CANTON, N.Y. — A third-period goal by St. Lawrence’s Kevin DeVergilio gave the Saints a 3-2 win over Rensselaer in ECACHL play Saturday night.
After receiving an up-ice pass from Shawn Fensel, DeVergilio put the moves on the RPI defense, shielding the puck as he cut in front of Mathias Lange. DeVergilio managed to get Lange down and slid it past him for the game-winning goal.
DeVergilio’s goal was the only one of the third period and it came with 6:39 remaining to play, at even-strength, which is something that neither RPI and St. Lawrence saw much of this weekend.
“I knew I had more speed than (Lange) did from post-to-post,” said DeVergilio. “I took it in there and that’s what did it.”
Friday night the Engineers were 2-for-11 on the power play against Clarkson, and Saturday they went 1-for-8 in their attempts. St. Lawrence was 4-for-14 against Union and 1-for-7 Saturday.
The odd thing? The third period was played without a single penalty.
“It was one of the better games that we’ve been involved with this season,” said Engineer head coach Dan Fridgen. “Both teams played to win the game in that third period and it came down to their guy making a heck of play for the goal. It ended up in the net, but a bounce here or a bounce there for us, it could have been different.”
“That was a highlight-reel kind of goal,” said Saints head coach Joe Marsh. “He’s got speed and he made a real nice play. That third period was the best period we have played this year. There was a lot of flow and it was against a real good RPI squad.”
The game’s scoring began at the tail end of a five-on-three power play. Alexander Valentin pushed the point to the top of the slot. He took a shot that bounced to the right of Justin Pesony, to where Kevin Croxton was waiting. Croxton tapped the bouncing puck and it trickled into the net.
A St. Lawrence power play tied the game with three minutes to go in the period. Max Taylor’s shot was deflected by Kyle Rank past Lange to make it 1-1.
Because of all the special-teams play, RPI’s line of Tommy Green-Tyler Eaves-Kurt Colling had not seen much ice time, but they gave RPI the lead with a workmanlike goal. Crashing into the net and looking for rebounds, it was Green who picked up the loose puck to slide it by Pesony.
“Any time that you can get that kind of play out of guys who haven’t played a lot because of special-teams ice time, that’s what you look for as a coach,” said Fridgen. “They got the opportunity and they performed well and that will lead to more opportunity.”
A clean faceoff win led to the Saints tying the game. Brock McBride won the faceoff cleanly and Jared Ross blistered one that Lange was late in reacting to.
“That was an absolute bomb,” said Marsh of Ross’ shot.
The Engineers (4-4-1, 0-1-2 ECACHL) will return home next weekend to take on Quinnipiac in its annual Black Friday game.
“We’ve got to build off this weekend,” said Fridgen. “We could look back and say we could have had two points, but we just have to build on the good third period that we had.”
The Saints (6-2-0, 2-0-0 ECACHL) will head to Yale and Brown next weekend.
“It’s a nice start to our season, it gives us something to build on,” said Marsh. “It’s a long season, but it’s nice to start at the top and not have to climb to begin the season.”