When and Where: December 8, 2017 – South Burlington, Vt. (C. Douglas Cairns Recreation Arena)
Score: Southern New Hampshire University 5, Saint Michael's College 0
Records: SNHU 4-3-2 (3-2-1 Northeast-10), SMC 4-4-1 (3-2 Northeast-10)
Senior Ryan Slatky (Manchester, N.H.) turned in a 24-save performance for his first shutout of the season, and freshman Kyle Galloway (Sugar Hill, Ga.) tallied a pair of goals to lead the Southern New Hampshire University ice hockey team past Saint Michael's College, 5-0, in Northeast-10 Conference ice hockey action on Friday night.
The win moves the Penmen into first place in the NE10 with a record of 3-2-1, while the Purple Knights are now a half-game behind SNHU with a 3-2 mark in the league.
The Penmen used a scoring flurry late in the first period to build a 3-0 cushion through 20 minutes of play. Senior Kyle Valliere (Goffstown, Mass.) started the barrage with his fourth off the season at 16:11 of the frame, as he converted a rebound opportunity off a shot from sophomore Brett Strawn (Wareham, Mass.). Strawn knocked down a dump-in attempt by the Purple Knights at the red line and carried it into the offensive end, where he snapped a shot from the top of the right faceoff circle to the far post that was initially stopped, but the rebound caromed off the blocker and onto the stick of Valliere, who tucked it into the back of the net.
The lead doubled less than a minute later when junior Joseph Berardi (Burlington, Mass.) redirected a shot through traffic for his first. Berardi started the play by forcing a turnover in the Saint Michael's end just beneath the rightwing faceoff circle. After maintaining possession around the back of the net, he slid a pass back for senior Matt McLelland (Reading, Mass.), who then went across the blueline to junior Anthony Gandolfi (Nutley, N.J.). Gandolfi unloaded a slapper from the point that Berardi tipped to the upper left corner to make it 2-0 with 2:59 left before the intermission.
Southern New Hampshire capped its outburst with its third marker in a span of 1:29 after Galloway collected his second of the season. Galloway gained control of a loose puck just inside the Purple Knights' blue line before cycling it down the leftwing boards to freshman Griffin Connor (Manchester, N.H.) at the faceoff circle. Connor hit Galloway with a return feed in the slot, and he toe dragged around a defender before ripping a shot past the blocker of the SMC netminder at 17:40.
After a scoreless second, the Penmen went back to work in the third with a pair of goals to put the game away. Junior Artem Efimov-Barakov (Khimki, Russia) struck first when he grabbed the rebound off senior Alec Cochran's (Sanbornton, N.H.) shot and punched it home on the man advantage at 4:56. Galloway capped the game's scoring with 12:46 to go in regulation, as he forced a turnover in the neutral zone and walked in on goal before finishing on the backhand.
- Slatky's shutout was the third of his career and first since February 13, 2016, a 1-0 win over Stonehill College to secure a postseason berth for the Penmen.
- Southern New Hampshire outshot Saint Michael's, 35-24, which included a 14-7 edge in the first period. The Penmen were 1-for-6 on the man advantage while holding the Purple Knights scoreless on their two powerplay chances.
- Galloway's two goals pushes his career total to three, while Strawn's assist increased his point total to a team-best 10 through nine games.
The Penmen are off until 2018 when they open the second half of their schedule with 7:30 p.m. tilt against Becker College on January 9 at the Ice Den.
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