Oct. 14, 2006
NIAGARA FALLS, N.Y.- Niagara's Vince Rocco scored the game-winning goal 1:51 into sudden death overtime as the Holy Cross men's hockey team fell to Niagara, 5-4, on Saturday night at the Dwyer Arena in the Crusaders' season-opener. The Crusaders start off the year with a 0-1 record, while the Purple Eagles improve to 2-2 overall. Holy Cross had four separate goal scorers, while senior captain James Sixsmith (Alexandria, Va.) posted three assists.
The Crusaders jumped out to a 3-0 lead in the first period as junior Dale Reinhardt (Livingston, N.J.), senior Jon Landry (Lexington, Mass.) and sophomore Dewey Thomson (Northbridge, Mass.) each scored goals. Reinhardt's goal came at just 2:53 into the game on a power play with an assist by Sixsmith.
Landry then netted a goal just less than three minutes later as Sixsmith earned his second assist of the game. Thomson increased Holy Cross' lead to 3-0 at the 19:35 mark while on the power play with an assist by junior Cal St. Denis (Freelton, Ontario). The Crusaders outshot the Purple Eagles by an 18-8 margin in the period, while Holy Cross went 2-3 on the man-advantage and Niagara went 0-3.
At the 17:54 mark of the second period, Niagara cut the Holy Cross lead to 3-1 when Rocco scored his first goal of the game. The Crusaders answered right back when senior Sean Nappo (Northville, Mich.) scored a goal at 19:04 to give the Crusaders back their three goal lead. Sixsmith and Reinhardt were credited with assists.
The Purple Eagles would then go onto score four straight goals staring with a goal by Matt Caruana with just eight seconds left in the second period. For the period, Niagara outshot Holy Cross, 14-9.
Ted Cook made it a 4-3 game when he scored his third goal of the season at 12:12 into the third period, while just 54 seconds later Les Reany tied the game at 4-4 with his third tally of the year. The game remained tied until Rocco scored his second goal of the game to give the Purple Eagles the victory in sudden death overtime.
Holy Cross freshman goaltender Ian Dams (Manotick, Ontario) made 34 saves in his collegiate debut, while Juliano Pagliero stopped 30 shots for Niagara. The Crusaders had 34 shots and went 2-5 on the power play, while the Purple Eagles had 39 shots and went 1-10.
The Crusaders will return to action when they host Mercyhurst for a weekend series at the Hart Center on Friday and Saturday, October 20-21. Friday night's game will be at 7:00 p.m. and it will mark Holy Cross' home and Atlantic Hockey opener, while Saturday's contest will start at 4:00 p.m.