Sabres capture first Harris Cup in nearly 20 years

Marian swept the Milwaukee School of Engineering to win its first Harris Cup since 2002. (Photo courtesy of Marian athletics)

Nearly two decades have gone by since Marian last won an NCHA championship.

The wait ended on Saturday.

The Sabres are winners of the Harris Cup for the first time since 2002 after turning away the Milwaukee School of Engineering 4-1 to complete a championship series sweep. Marian won the opener Friday by a 3-1 score.

Marian scored twice in the second period and never looked back as it ended a challenging year on a six-game winning streak. They finish out 12-7. MSOE ends the year 10-7-2.

Ty Enns scored twice and goalie Colby Muise came away with tournament MVP honors after making 30 saves in the final.

Marian hadn’t played in the championship round since 2011 but it wasn’t going to let that drought continue, outscoring the opposition 21-9 in the postseason. 

Enns scored the first two goals of the night for the Sabres before the Raiders responded to slice the advantage to 2-1 in the third Eliot Friedow.

Blaine Caton pushed the Sabres in front 3-1 before Gianni Vitali added an empty netter to give the Sabres their third NCHA crown in program history.

Marian held a 44-31 advantage in shots, including a 14-6 edge in the final period. It forced MSOE to go 0-for-4 on the power play. 

Enns, Vitali, Parker Colley and Nathan Walker all earned NCHA All-Tournament team honors while Muise was named the MVP. He made 42 saves in Friday’s win.

The Sabres dropped four consecutive games at one point in February but bounced back, winning nine of their final 11 games during a season played amid the COVID-19 pandemic.