HAMDEN, Conn. — On Friday night, the St. Lawrence Saints took a 4-1 decision over the Quinnipiac Bobcats to capture the ECAC regular season title Friday night at the TD Banknorth Sports Center.
The Saints came marching into the contest with two early goals in the first period.
Max Taylor scored the first goal at 51 seconds into the game. Drew Bagnall sent a shot at Bud Fisher, where he was unable to control the rebound. Taylor picked up the loose puck and put it through Fisher’s five-hole for the 1-0 Saints (20-11-2, 16-4-1 ECACHL) lead.
Under four minutes later, Alex Curran scored an unassisted goal. From the bottom of the circle, Curran threw the puck at the net to take a 2-0 lead at 5:22.
“We had three kids on one,” said Quinnipiac head coach Rand Pecknold. “That shot should never have gotten off.”
The Bobcats (16-12-5, 10-7-4 ECACHL) would be even with the Saints at eight shots a piece after one period but had difficulty getting the puck past Alex Petizian.
Heading into the second period, the Bobcats still could not Petizian who would make nine saves in the period. The Bobcats would have quality scoring chances, but Petizian would stay strong to preserve the shutout through two periods.
“Their goalie made saves when he needed to make saves,” said Pecknold.
On the other side the Saints would look to extend the lead, but the best they would do was hit two posts on three power play chances.
The Saints would take a three goal lead on Kyle Rank’s power play goal. In a scrum in front of the net, Rank would find a loose puck and bang it home for a three goal lead.
“They [St. Lawrence] are a committed to playing a team game,” said Pecknold. “It’s a learning curve for us in year two.”
The Bobcats were not to be shutout and :16 seconds later Bryan Leitch would cut the lead back to two. On the face-off after the Saints goal, Nelson would win the puck to Leitch would go in and beat Petizian’s blocker side.
St. Lawrence would make the final 4-1, on Kevin DeVergilio’s goal. On a three-on-one, Brock McBride would pass over to Taylor, who would shoot on net. Fisher would make the save but the rebound would lie in the crease. DeVergilio was trailing the play and put the motionless puck in the net.
The Bobcats went zero for eight on the power play in the contest.
“They did a good job of stacking on the blue line,” said assistant captain Jamie Bates.
Quinnipiac is 2-4-1 in their last seven league contests heading into tomorrow regular season finale.
Quinnipiac will claim a first round bye if they can defeat Clarkson tomorrow evening. The Bobcats hold the tie breaker with Cornell, if they should happen to finish with the same amount of league points.