Penn State recorded their first tie of the season – and their first in two seasons in Division I play – against RIT Friday night when the two teams skated 3-3 over three periods and an overtime period to improve the team’s record to 1-2-1 for the season.
Penn State opened the score early off Dylan Richard’s first goal as a Nittany Lion. On 4-on-4 play after an interference penalty to Zach Saar at 4:57 then a RIT roughing call five seconds later, Richard received a Koudys pass and deked his way to the front of the net to fool RIT netminder Jordan Ruby in close. The lead didn’t last long for the Nittany Lions; however, as RIT tied it up a little over two minutes later on a wonderful looking tic-tac-toe goal on the power play from RIT Tiger Adam Mitchell. Then things started to get a bit chippier with about 4 minutes to go in the period. Penn State’s David Thompson and RIT’s Ben Lynch were in the box for four-on-four hockey – for hooking and embellishing, respectively – when the Nittany Lions committed another penalty, this time slashing on Taylor Holstrom, to give RIT a 4-on-3 power play for the rest of the period. Twelve seconds later, the Tigers would go up 2-1 on the 4-on-3 advantage for their first lead of the game. In the final 30 seconds of the period, Penn State took a minor elbowing penalty on Kenny Brooks and a five minute major and game misconduct on David Glen for kneeing which gave RIT a two-man advantage for the rest of the period and the first 4:31 of the second.
The penalty kill came up big at the start of the second period for the Nittany Lions, effectively killing the 5-on-3 penalty in the first five minutes of the period. In net for Penn State, Matt Skoff made some big saves as well to keep the team down by only one goal. Penn State got it back to a 2-2 tie on their own power play goal from David Goodwin with 4:39 remaining in the period on a 3-on-2 rush that Goodwin roofed past goaltender Ruby. The tying goal was Goodwin’s second goal of his freshman season. After a melee of penalties in the first, the Nittany Lions only committed one other penalty in the game at the end of the second frame to Ricky DeRosa for interference.
The intensity picked up in the third period, with more after the whistle pushing and shoving between the two teams and chippier hits. Curtis Loik swung the momentum the Nittany Lions way and gave them a 3-2 lead 8:47 into the third on what seemed like a normal dump in from Loik that RIT goalie Ruby tried to deflect away but it bounced in front of him to put Penn State on top. However, RIT came roaring back four minutes later with an even strength goal off a turnover in the Penn State defensive zone that beat Skoff on the backhand to tie the game once again, this time at 3-3.
When 60 minutes wouldn’t settle it, the teams headed to overtime. The extra period, a five minute sudden death frame, held good chances for both teams but no one could find the back of the net. Officially, the game ended in a tie after the five minute OT period – a fact that confused a good portion of the press box, as the score board in Pegula said the OT period was to be followed by a shootout to determine the winner but later it was discovered that it will only be for Big Ten hockey games – but the teams headed to a shootout that did not count for the standings, only for fun and for practice for Penn State’s upcoming Big Ten hockey games. RIT ‘won’ the shootout 2-0 but the teams came away with a tie at the end of the night.
Penn State went 1-5 on the extra man advantage, but allowed a dangerous RIT power play 2 goals of their own on 6 attempts. In the first period alone, the Nittany Lions had 25 total minutes of penalties acquired on 7 committed infractions. After the 7 in the first period, Penn State would only commit one more minor or major penalty all game. Skoff had a good start in net as well, stopping 22 of RIT’s 25 shots, but will probably not get the start in Philadelphia Saturday afternoon with the quick turnaround for the games.
The team travels to Philadelphia to play Vermont Saturday afternoon in the second annual Philadelphia College Hockey Faceoff in the Wells Fargo Center, the home of the Philadelphia Flyers. Last year, the team beat the Catamounts 4-2 in front of over 19,000 fans and will look to repeat the result on Saturday. Puck drops at 5 p.m. and television coverage will be picked up by The Comcast Network in the Philadelphia area only.