WATERTOWN, Mass. - Senior Derek Bacon (Calgary, Alberta/Okotoks) scored two third period goals as part of a hat trick to help Bentley pull away from Sacred Heart in the 3rd period for a 5-4 victory over the Pioneers in game one of the Atlantic Hockey first round Friday night.
With the game tied 3-3 going into the 3rd period, Bacon struck with goals a little over four minutes apart in the early part of the period to send Bentley to the game one win.
He first scored at 2:26 on a shot in the slot after taking a pass from Michael Reardon (Norwood, Mass./South Shore) to give Bentley a 4-3 lead. He then finished his hat trick with another goal at 6:48, this one from Reardon and Tyler Deresky (Flemington, N.J./Amarillo).
The Falcons held that lead for most of the period, until an extra-attacker goal by SHU's Justin Danforth with 1:44 remaining made it a one goal game and set up a frantic finish. SHU again pulled goalie Brett Magnus for the final 1:05, but Bentley was able to hang on for a 1-0 series lead.
Bentley jumped out to 1-0 lead at 16:39 of the 1st period on a nice effort by Max French (West Kelowna, B.C./West Kelowna) for the goal. After taking a pass from Andrew Gladiuk (White Rock, B.C./Nanaimo) into the offensive zone, French skated in a lifted a backhand shot over Magnus' glove for the lead.
Bentley then grinded out a power play goal at 7:48 of the 2nd frame for a 2-0 lead. A shot on goal by Kyle Schmidt (Menomonee Falls, Wisc./Sioux City) hit the post and a pile up in front of the net ensued for the loose puck, but French was able to get his stick through the traffic to poke it in.
The Falcons then went up 3-0 at 10:05 as Bacon and Reardon combined on a nice goal. Reardon broke down the right wing with plenty of space and Bacon streaking down the left, separated by a lone Sacred Heart defender. Reardon feathered a pass over, and Bacon slammed it into the back of the net to light the lamp.
Sacred Heart though finished the period strong with three goals in the final 5:43 of the period. After a 5-on-5 goal for left wing Zack Luczyk, Sacred Heart scored twice on a 5-on-3 opportunity just 36 seconds apart to send the game tied 3-3 heading into the final period.
Luczyk scored on the far post with the two man advantage at 19:10, followed by center Justin Danforth finishing the power play with the tying goal at 19:46.
Game two will be tomorrow night at the JAR as Bentley looks to advance.