HAMDEN, Conn. – Facing elimination for the first time this postseason, Union responded with a 3-2 victory over 11th-ranked Quinnipiac in ECAC Hockey Quarterfinals action from High Point Solutions Arena. The teams meet tomorrow at 4:00 p.m., for the third and deciding game.
Mike Pontarelli scored the game-winning goal with 3:53 left in the third period after Nick Cruice drove hard to the net and dropped a pass across the slot. The goal was Pontarelli’s second of the series.
Daniel Ciampini recorded a pair of assists, retaking the team scoring lead with 50 points while also tying Daniel Carr’s team record for points in a season.
Quinnipiac wasted little time getting on the board, opening scoring at 3:46 behind Sam Anas’ 23rd goal of the season. Union responded less than a minute later when Ryan Scarfo swiped at a rebound in mid-air, poking it past goaltender Michael Garteig.
The teams exchanged second period goals. Matthew Pecca cut between the circles and lifted a shot into the net at the 6:18 mark. Max Novak tied the game with a gem, jamming in his own rebound one-handed (on the stick) while sliding on his stomach.
Union goaltender Colin Stevens stopped 31 shots, none bigger than a sprawling glove save on Soren Jonzzon late in the second period that kept the game tied after two periods.
Union senior class improved its ECACH playoff record to 15-1 … the Dutchmen were 1-7 in their last eight games against Quinnipiac entering tonight’s game.