CANTON, N.Y. — Freshman forward Sean Flanagan scored one goal and set up the game winner for his first two collegiate points as St. Lawrence snapped Quinnipiac’s eight-game unbeaten streak with a come-from-behind 3-2 win in ECAC Hockey League action Saturday afternoon.
The Saints ran their own win streak to five games and won back-to-back ECACHL series for the first time in six seasons.
The Saints swept their second straight league series and improved to 6-3-0 overall and 4-0-0 in the ECACHL. Quinnipiac, 5-3-2 overall and 2-1-1 in league play, sustained its first league loss. The 4-0 league start for the Saints is the best since the 1999-2000 season which also won its first four league games.
Flanagan rushed into the Quinnipiac zone off the Saint bench with 6:40 to play in the third period and beat a Bobcat defender to the puck in the corner. He snapped a quick pass to classmate Travis Vermeulen, who was all alone in front of Quinnipiac goalie Bud Fisher and Vermeulen buried his second of the season at 6:44 to give the Saints the eventual game-winner.
“The goal obviously fired Sean up and he went into the corner after the puck like he was shot out of a cannon,” said Saint coach Joe Marsh. “He made a great play all the way around and Travis made a great play to finish it off. Our young guys have really stepped in and contributed and it has been someone different just about every time out.”
It took a 12-save period from junior goaltender Justin Pesony and some anxious moments in the final 1:21 with the Bobcat net empty in favor of an extra attacker as the Saints held on for their fifth straight win.
“Quinnipiac is an outstanding team and very skilled offensively. We needed a big night from Justin and we got it. I thought he did an excellent job tonight. Our penalty killing was also outstanding … it was an excellent weekend all the way around,” Marsh added.
The Bobcats scored the only goal of an even first period when junior Dan Travis tipped the puck out of the air and under the crossbar on a power play with 45.6 seconds to play in the period. Brandon Wong took the puck from defenseman Reid Cashman and sent it sailing toward the net before Travis tipped it for his third of the season.
The Saints had two great chances earlier in the period, but Fisher came up with a big save on Saint Flanagan and Saint senior defenseman Drew Bagnall had the puck roll off his stick before he could tuck it past Fisher on a two-on-one with seven minutes to go in the period.
SLU came back to tie the game at 6:26 of the second period as freshman Mike McKenzie sent classmate Flanagan in alone on Fisher and Flanagan, a Canton native, scored his first collegiate goal on a tuck-in.
The Bobcats retook the lead on freshman Brandon Wong’s eighth of the year on a wrist shot just under the crossbar at 11:37, but the Saints tied it again when junior Charlie Giffin jammed home a power play shot from right in front for his fifth of the season at 13:33.