Friars spoil home opener - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

Friars spoil home opener

Friday, November 2nd

BURLINGTON, Vt. – Mark Jankowski scored 76 seconds after the Catamounts had tied the game at two in the third period, and it stood up as the game-winner as Providence defeated Vermont 3-2 on Friday night at Gutterson Fieldhouse. Vermont drops its home opener and falls to 0-2-2 (0-2-2 HEA), while Providence wins its third straight game and improves to 4-2-1 (3-1-0 HEA).

Providence took the lead four minutes into the first period as defenseman Alex Velischek took a low wrist shot from the left point.  Brody Hoffman made the initial save, but Derek Army crashed the net and poked it past the rookie to open the scoring. After a lengthy video review, the goal would stand.

In the second period, the Catamounts had the answer as a Tim Schaller penalty resulted in a lengthy 4-on-3 power play. Chris McCarthy held the puck along the goal line and dished the puck to Nick Luukko in the slot. Luukko faked a shot and fed Jacob Fallon in the right circle as he slapped a one-timer past Jon Gillies to tie the game at one.

Three and a half minutes later, Providence responded to retake the lead. Kyle Murphy touched a pass off the boards down the left wing to Brandon Tanev, who streaked into the Catamount zone. Tanev faked a pass to Army in the slot, deked to his backhand, and beat Hoffman with a low shot inside the right post.

Just 1:17 into the final frame, Kevin Hart was called for tripping to give the Cats their fifth power play of the night.  Nick Bruneteau fired a one-time slap shot from the center point and Gillies made the initial save at the top of the crease. The rebound tapped off McCarthy's skate, and Connor Brickely touched in the loose puck at the right post to knot the score at two.

After a turnover in the offensive zone, Providence came back on a 3-on-2 to score the eventual game-winner just 1:16 later. Murphy fed Jankowski in the right circle and he whipped a shot toward goal. The puck tipped off a UVM defenseman and hit the crossbar, then came off Hoffman's back and trickled into the net at the 4:19 mark.

The Catamounts played the final 1:21 a man down after Luukko was called for tripping, but they pulled Hoffman and nearly tied the game on a Kyle Reynolds chance with two seconds left. Vermont finished the night 2-6 on the power play and a perfect 4-4 on the penalty kill. Hoffman made 24 saves in his fourth career start, while Gillies stopped 23 shots at the other end.

The Catamounts and Friars complete their two-game Hockey East series on Saturday at 7:05 p.m. at Gutterson Fieldhouse.

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