BOSTON – The Suffolk men's hockey team came up short against Lebanon Valley, dropping a 4-2 decision to open action at the Boston Landing Tournament Friday afternoon at Warrior Ice Arena.
SCORE: Suffolk 2 | Lebanon Valley 4
RECORDS: Suffolk (4-8-0) | Lebanon Valley (6-3-2)
HOW IT HAPPENED
Suffolk maintained possession of the puck for the majority of the first frame, but was unable to lite the lamp as Matt Forslund turned aside all 11 shots sent his way.
Despite the lofty 25-15 shot advantage in the blue-and-gold's favor, the Dutchmen took advantage of one of their six shots on target. On a fast break, Billy Roche made a huge defensive block on Skyler Pugh. Tyler Romel was there to pick up the pieces for Lebanon Valley and found Travis Acker, who sailed the rock past Michael Levine stick side to give the Dutchmen a one-goal edge with 3:46 remaining in the period.
Lebanon Valley carried its late momentum from the first into the opening portion of the second and stretched its lead to two less than five minutes in behind an unassisted score from Brett Johnson.
Suffolk took over from there, hammering Forslund with multiple attempts. When Danny Galvez was whistled for Boarding, the Rams took advantage and found their way on the scoreboard. Jack Kelly rebounded Mikhail Bryan's turned aside shot, wrapped around the pipes and snuck the puck past Forslund glove side to slice the deficit in half at the 11:22 minute mark. Nick Abbene had a hand in the goal.
The Rams continued to pepper Forslund with shots, finishing the period with 19 shots on goal, but the Dutchmen's goaltender stood tall to insure the 2-1 lead in Lebanon Valley's favor after two periods.
Throughout the third period Suffolk attempted a comeback, but it never came. Lebanon Valley, meanwhile, tacked on an insurance tally with just under two minutes remaining as Brian Hovanec etched his name on the scoresheet with a set-up from Johnson to lengthen the Dutchmen's cushion to 3-1.
Chris Glionna pulled Levine from the pipes in the hopes of giving the Rams a last second chance. The extra skater worked with Joseph Mortillaro, who returned to the ice after a handful games due to injury, found the back of the netting with 34.1 seconds left on the clock.
After the faceoff Levine headed to the bench once again. This time the Dutchmen took advantage of the empty net and slid the puck in with 5.4 seconds to go for the final 4-2 margin.
- Levine picked up 21 saves in the setback.
- Forslund had 39 saves to his credit to backstop Lebanon Valley to victory.
- Kelly and Mortillaro were responsible for Suffolk's strikes.
- Bryan was the lone skater in blue-and-gold with multiple points to his credit, assist on each of the Rams' markers.
- Abbene recorded one assist in the outing.
- Suffolk commanded the shot advantage, 41-25.
- The Dutchmen won the battle in the face-off dot, 33-31.
- Suffolk and Lebanon Valley renewed a rivalry, meeting for the first time since 2004 and seventh time overall.
- Bryan is on a three-game point streak. Over the stretch he has recorded eight points on two goals and six assists.
Suffolk will compete in the consolation contest of the Boston Landing Tournament tomorrow, Saturday, Jan. 5 at 2:40 p.m. versus the tournament host Nichols.