CHARLESTOWN, Mass. – A three-goal second period proved to be enough for Suffolk men's hockey as the Rams rolled past Salem State, 4-1, Tuesday afternoon at Emmons Horrigan O'Neil Memorial Rink.
SCORE: Suffolk 4, Salem State 1
RECORDS: Suffolk (2-1-0) | Salem State (0-2-0)
HOW IT HAPPENED
Suffolk played down a man for six minutes of the first frame and Michael Levine kept Suffolk in the game over that 8:36-minute span. The senior from Clarendon Hill, Illinois picked up half of his 12 first period saves over that stretch to keep zeros on the scoreboard.
The one-goal game remained until the final three minutes of the second period when the Rams lit the lamp twice in 2:09. Jack Kelly struck first at the 17:42 minute mark on feeds from Sean Montgomery and Joseph Mortillaro. Then with seven seconds left in the period and Salem's Billy Hickey in the box, Mortillaro found the back of the net to give the Rams' a 3-0 advantage. Nick Abbene and Joe Feeney both assisted on the powerplay goal.
Suffolk came out of the locker determined to stretch its lead further and commanded the opening portion of the third period. Neither team was able to capitalize on its chances though until Salem State found its grove just after the midway point and Ryan Tierney fed Matt Yianacopolus to erase the shutout.
The Rams were able to regain the three-goal advantage as the game approached the final two minutes. With the Vikings' Brody Heleno in the box for holding Tommy Bishop picked up LJ Fellows wide shot off the boards and tucked the puck under Lacroix's pad to make it a 4-1 Suffolk game with 1:48 left on the clock.
- Levine turned aside 28 shots to improve to 2-0-0 on the season.
- Lacroix stopped 23 shots in the setback.
- Salem State held a slim edge in shots, 29-27, and won the battle in the face-off circle, 37-34.
- The Rams had a well-balanced off with 11 different skaters recording a point.
- Mortillaro led the charge with a two-point effort behind one marker and one helper.
- Bishop, Bryan and Kelly all scored once for Suffolk.
- Suffolk and Salem met for the first time.
- The Rams defeated the Vikings for the first time in the all-time series.
- The four-goal output against Salem State matches the most goals by Suffolk in the all-time series with the Rams scoring four times three times with the last coming in 4-4 draw in 2016-17.
- Suffolk has scored on the powerplay in back-to-back games and put away a pair of man-up opportunities for the first time since netting two against then-No.9/10 Endicott Feb. 2, 2018.
- Levine opened the season with 111:41 minutes of scoreless action.
- Kelly has recorded at least one point in all three of Suffolk's games this season, recording four goals and two assists in the process. The sophomore has found the back of the net in each of the Rams' games this year as well.
- Bryan has contributed at least one point in all three of Suffolk's games this year as well and has scored in back-to-back games.
- Mortillaro matched a career-high two points.
- Montgomery dished out the first assist of his collegiate career.
- Brooks has contributed one point in back-to-back games, tallying at least one point in both contests he has appeared in this year.
- Feeney matched a personal-best one point off one assist.
- Fellows registered his first point of 2018-19.
Suffolk lifts the lid on its NEHC slate as it heads to New England College and Southern Maine this weekend. The Rams will first visit the Pilgrims Friday, Nov. 9 for a 7 p.m. tilt before venturing for a Saturday, Nov. 10 showdown with the Huskies.