BOSTON, Mass. – Sophomore Jake Bolton (Ellington, Conn.) netted his second career goal and an assist, but the Holy Cross men's hockey team fell to Northeastern, 5-2, at Matthews Arena on Saturday evening in non-conference action. With the loss, the Crusaders fall to 0-3-0 overall, while the Huskies advance to 4-0-0 overall.
Given a power play opportunity less than two minutes into the game, the Huskies' Kevin Roy came out with the first goal of the night four seconds into the chance. Roy's shot came from just outside the circle on the right side of the net. The Huskies added another goal at 9:31 when Mike Szmatula caught the pass in the neutral zone, came up the glove side of junior goaltender Matt Ginn (Lindsay, Ontario) and scored top shelf, stick side from the middle of the ice. Northeastern's third goal came when Josh Manson received a cross ice pass at the blue line and took a shot from the point through traffic that made it through Ginn's five-hole. With just under two minutes remaining in the period, the Crusaders capitalized on a 5-on-3 opportunity to score their first of the night. Sophomore Castan Sommer (Shrewsbury, Mass.) swung around the boards to junior Mike McNamara (Chestnut Hill, Mass.) in the corner behind the Northeastern goal. McNamara passed the puck to a waiting Bolton at the blue line. Bolton rifled a shot from the middle of the ice on the blue line that beat goaltender Clay Witt over his stick side shoulder.
Trailing 3-1 entering the second, the Crusaders came back to bring the score within one at 2:10. Freshman Logan Smith (Littleton, Colo.) passed the puck across the blue line to defensive partner Bolton. Bolton settled the puck and fired a shot from just inside the line. Sophomore Sean Gustin (Stoneham, Mass.) redirected the shot over the stick side shoulder of Witt. The assist marked Smith's first collegiate point. Within two minutes of Gustin's goal however, the Huskies' Zac Aston-Reese came back to and passed the puck across the crease to John Stevens who netted Northeastern's fourth of the night. Ginn made 20 saves during the second period.
Northeastern took a shot to attempt their fifth goal and pulled Ginn out of the crease. Junior defenseman Nilan Nagy (Canonsburg, Pa.) blocked the attempt, keeping the game within two goals. Braden Pimm netted the fifth of the night when he redirected a shot that was rifled by Szmatula from the blue line on a Husky powerplay. The Crusaders could not rally after the fifth goal and the game ended 5-2. On a last chance effort senior assistant captain Adam Schmidt (Warrington, Pa.) shot the puck just wide of the stick side of Witt.
Both the Crusaders and the Huskies were able to take advantage of at least one power play opportunity. Holy Cross went 1-for-5 on the power play, while Northeastern went 3-for-7. The Huskies outshot the Crusaders 53-29 during the contest. Ginn tallied 48 saves, the third most by any Division I Crusader goalie.
The Crusaders return to action on Friday, Oct. 25 when they host Quinnipiac at 7:00 p.m. for the first game of a home-and-home series.