FAIRFIELD, Conn. — Sophomore Bear Trapp scored two goals and Jason Smith made 16 saves for his first shutout of the season as Sacred Heart beat American International, 4-0, in the Atlantic Hockey quarterfinals Saturday night at the Milford Ice Pavilion.
The Pioneers advance to the AHA semifinals Friday night in Rochester, N.Y.
The win moved SHU to 21-10-4 on the season, tying the school record for wins in a season, set last year.
Sophomore Nick Johnson opened the scoring for the Pioneers 7:08 into the first period. Johnson took a pass from senior Peter Ferraro and crashed the net, sending the puck on goal.
The shot was stopped by Yellow Jacket goaltender Tom Fenton, but Johnson followed the play and was able to whack home the rebound for his fifth goal of the year.
The Pioneers opened up a 2-0 lead five minutes into the second period when Trapp scored a power-play goal. Senior Pierre-Luc O’Brien carried the puck into the offensive zone and dropped a pass back to Trapp, who snapped a shot into the back of the net for his 15th goal of the year.
Sacred Heart went up 3-0 midway through the third period. With 9:06 gone, O’Brien brought the puck into the offensive zone and handed it off to sophomore Kyle Tyll, who snapped the puck over the shoulder of Fenton, into the top left corner of the goal. Sophomore Dave Grimson registered one of his two assists on the night on Tyll’s seventh goal of the year.
Trapp iced the game for the Pioneers with 5:45 left in the third. Trapp and Ferraro broke up the ice on a two-on-one. Ferraro fed the puck through the goalmouth to Trapp, who tipped the puck past Fenton for the goal.
American International had several opportunities to get on the scoreboard but went 0-9 on the power play, including squandering two five-on-three advantages. The Pioneers were 1-8 on the power play and outshot the Yellow Jackets 28-16.
The Pioneers will face Air Force in the semifinal round Friday night at the Blue Cross Arena. Faceoff is scheduled for 4:00 p.m.