WATERTOWN, Mass. – Freshman Justin Breton (Fitchburg, Mass./Boston Jr. Bruins) scored the tiebreaking goal and netminder Kyle Rank (Islip, N.Y./Markham Waxers) made 31 saves to lead Bentley University to a key 4-2 win over Atlantic Hockey rival UConn Friday night at Ryan Skating Arena.
With the score knotted at two close to the midway point of the third period, Breton put the Falcons in front for good with a tremendous individual effort. Breton won a loose puck in the neutral zone and had a step on a UConn defender as he entered the offensive zone. As he closed on net he was being hooked down the ground, but still managed to backhand the puck past Huskies goalie Garrett Bartus. That gave the Falcons a 3-2 lead with just over 11 minutes remaining.
In search of the tying goal, UConn pulled Bartus with one minute remaining. They had several chances to score, none better than a shot in the crease from Billy Latta, but Rank denied him with a spectacular glove save to preserve the lead.
Freshman Brett Gensler (St. Charles, Mo./Youngstown Phantoms) sealed the win with an empty-net goal with seven seconds remaining. Erik Peterson (Shorewood, Minn./Sioux Falls Stampede) helped set the goal up by blocking a shot and earned an assist, the last of his three points on the night.
After senior Dustin Cloutier (Berkley, Mich./Mahoning Valley Phantoms) staked Bentley to a 1-0 lead in the first period with a power play goal, the team's went back-and-forth in an entertaining second period.
Justin Hernandez tied the game for the Huskies at 5:03 of the second, but the Falcons struck again on the power play at 14:16 to take a 2-1 lead. Gensler set Peterson up inside the right face-off circle and he beat Bartus to the glove side with a wrist shot.
Less than two minutes later however, UConn tied it right back up on Brant Harris' sixth goal of the season.
With the win, Bentley is now tied with the Huskies for second place in the East pod with three games to play, and has clinched the season-series with two wins. The final game of the season-series is Saturday night in Storrs, Conn.
At Watertown, Mass.
UConn (10-17-4, 10-12-2 AHA) 0 2 0 -- 2
Bentley (10-15-5, 9-11-4 AHA) 1 1 2 -- 4
1st Period: B, PP Dustin Cloutier (Erik Peterson, Brett Gensler) 6:38
2nd Period: UC, Justin Hernandez (Billy Latta, Andrew Olson) 5:03; B, PP Peterson (Gensler, Mike Switzer) 14:16; UC, Brant Harris (Cole Schneider) 15:49
3rd Period: B, Justin Breton (Unassisted) 8:44; B, EN Gensler (Peterson) 19:53
Shots: B, 32; UC, 33
Saves: B, Kyle Rank 31; UC, Garrett Bartus 28
Penalties: B, 4-8; UC, 6-12
Power Plays: B, 2-6; UC, 0-4