NEWARK, N.J. – Merrimack College once again had to come from behind, twice, to tie Connecticut, 2-2, on Friday afternoon at the Prudential Center in the opening round of the Liberty Hockey Invitational Tournament.
The game will go on record as a tie; the Warriors lost a shootout, 2-0, to determine advancement in the tournament, and will play in Sunday’s consolation game at 1 p.m. against either Princeton or Yale.
On the power play in the second period, Vinny Scotti was able to direct a Brian Christie centering feed past Rob Nichols for Merrimack’s first goal of the game. Spencer Naas scored in the first period to give the Huskies a 1-0 lead.
After Kasperi Ojantakanen scored to give UConn a 2-1 lead just 23 seconds into the third period, Merrimack defenseman Dan Kolomatis snapped a wrist shot from the point that found its way through traffic and past Nichols.
Merrimack was the recipient of two five-minute power plays, and later in the third, the Warriors would be down two men after back-to-back slashing and tripping minors, but Merrimack’s penalty kill wasn’t solved.
Final shot attempts in the game were 70-41 Merrimack, and final shots on goal were 40-22 Merrimack, including a 21-4 edge in the second period.
Rasmus Tirronen made 20 saves in goal for Merrimack while Nichols stopped 38 saves at the other end for UConn.
John Leahy’s pregame interview with Merrimack head coach Mark Dennehy
Intermission with JR F John Gustafsson
Intermission with College Hockey News Managing Editor Adam Wodon
Postgame with Warrior of the Game SR D Dan Kolomatis
Postgame with JR F Vinny Scotti
Postgame with head coach Mark Dennehy
Mike McMahon covers Merrimack College for The Eagle Tribune and is the founder and managing editor of The Mack Report as well as on staff as a senior writer at College Hockey News. Follow him on Twitter @MikeMcMahonCHN