PRINCETON, N.J. — Princeton and Rensselaer skated to a 4-4 overtime tie on Friday night at Baker Rink. Rensselaer jumped to a 2-0 lead in the game before the Tigers scored the games’ next four goals. Rensselaer scored the final two for the tie. Senior Patrick Neundorfer and junior Darroll Powe each had a goal and assist in the game.
Princeton is now 9-15-2 overall and 6-11-2 in the ECACHL, while Rensselaer is 13-14-5 overall and 7-7-5 in the league. Princeton is now in a three-way tie for ninth in the league standings with Yale and Quinnipiac. The trio sits four points behind eighth-place Clarkson and home ice in the playoffs with three games remaining.
Rensselaer opened the scoring with the game’s first two goals in the second half of the opening period. Oren Eizenman started things off when he scored on the power play at 8:27 from Keith MCWilliams and Kevin Croxton. Eizenman blocked MCWilliams point shot then picked up the puck and whipped it into the Tiger net for the goal.
The Engineers made it 2-0 7:01 later when Chris Hussey scored on a wraparound goal. MCWilliams picked off a Tiger pass and fed Hussey in the neutral zone who skated into the Tiger zone. He carried the puck behind the net, then stopped and came in front to score the goal and make the game 2-0.
Princeton came back 1:38 later to cut the lead in half and send the game to the first intermission with the Engineers holding a 2-1 lead. Freshman Brandan Kushniruk fed junior Darroll Powe with a touch pass in the neutral zone, and Powe carried into the RPI end before making a centering pass through the slot where senior Patrick Neundorfer directed it on net and by RPI-goaltender Matthias Lange for his seventh goal of the season.
Neither team pressured very much through the majority of the second period until Princeton had a late flurry and scored twice to take a 3-2 lead. First, at 17:15, junior Kevin Westgarth hammered a loose puck through Lange for his sixth of the season from sophomore Kyle Hagel and senior Seamus Young. Then, 1:18 later, Neundorfer sprung Powe on a breakaway and Powe scored through the five-hole for his sixth score of the season.
Princeton extended its lead to 4-2 early in the third period just as an Engineer penalty had expired when senior Sebastian Borza scored his first goal of the season. Junior Grant Goeckner-Zoeller and senior Brian Carthas assisted on the goal, which came at 2:03 of the period.
Rensselaer picked up its play after that and moved within a goal at the 8:48 mark with its second power-play tally of the night. MCWilliams scored the goal high to the upper right corner with assists from Eizenman and Kurt Colling.
The Engineers evened the score at 14:07 of the period when Colling sent Croxton in alone on the Princeton net. Croxton’s shot was deflected high into the air by Leroux and landed behind him and just trickled over the goal line to knot the score at 4-4.
Neither team was able to score in the final six minutes of regulation or the five-minute overtime period, and the game ended as a tie. Both teams had three shots in overtime.
Princeton senior goaltender Eric Leroux made 25 saves for the Tigers while Lange made 33 in the Engineer net.