COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — Yale completed a memorable road trip through Colorado, following up a 2-1 overtime win on Friday over No. 2 Denver with a 6-5 victory in the extra frame at Colorado College on Saturday before an announced crowd of 6,654 fans at Colorado Springs World Arena.
Yale senior Josh Balch scored his first goal of the year, firing a hard shot that went between CC senior goalie Joe Howe’s leg pads with 1:39 remaining in overtime to end it.
“They have been good for us haven’t they?” Yale coach Kevin Allain said. “Coming back in the third period and winning in overtime is a real testament to our fitness level and the work of our strength and conditioning coach.”
No. 14 Colorado College led unranked Yale, 5-4, entering the third period after Tigers freshman Jared Hanson banged home his first goal as a Tiger with 6:23 left in the second. Hanson knocked the puck in before Yale goalie Jeff Malcolm controlled the rebound with his glove, the referees ruled after a video review. The assists went to forwards Jeff Collett and Scott Wamsganz, who picked up his first point this season.
“We have to close out games at home,” said Tigers coach Scott Owens. “We got a good goal by Jared for a lead going into the third period and couldn’t finish.”
CC took its first lead since Nov. 10 (a 6-3 home win over Bemidji State) when Scott Winkler’s power-play slap shot forced its way in between Malcolm’s leg pads to make it 4-3. That lead lasted only 45 seconds before Yale’s Trent Ruffolo scored with 9:07 left.
“The key is when they got ahead, we didn’t quit,” Allain said.
The fireworks started early, especially with CC giving up 48 shots on goal, a night after allowing a season-high 49 in a 4-4 tie against No. 3 New Hampshire. Howe took the loss despite making 42 saves. Yale backup Nick Maricic made nine saves in relief of Malcolm, who was pulled after Hanson’s goal.
“He made a couple huge saves,” Allain said. “We wouldn’t have won it without him.”
The biggest came with 18.3 seconds left in regulation when CC captain William Rapuzzi collected a loose puck behind the net and passed in front for a one-timer by Archie Skalbeck. The low shot went off Maricic’s right leg pad and bounced wide of the net.
Yale and Colorado College scored a combined three goals in 39 seconds to knot the nonconference game at two with 14:48 left in the opening period.
Yale took a 1-0 lead only 57 seconds into the contest when Antoine Laganiere skated across the face of the Tigers’ net to beat Howe.
CC answered when a hard shot by senior Rylan Schwartz went off the Yale right post and then bounced back in off the senior forward’s left hip with 15:27 left. The ECAC-member Bulldogs attacked quickly off the resulting faceoff, banging in the second rebound to make it 2-1 only 13 seconds later.
The Tigers tied it up 26 ticks later when defenseman Eamonn McDermott’s shot went off the boards and in off the back of Yale goalie Jeff Malcolm’s right skate as he slid over the cover the post with 14:48 left.
Yale took a 3-2 lead when defenseman Tommy Fallen popped free in front after Kenny Agostino, Friday’s hero against No. 2 Denver, fell down along the boards with the puck under him. He righted himself and sent a pass out front to Fallen, who was unmarked while the Tigers looked for the puck.