WALTHAM, Mass. – AIC's Nicolas Luka scored the go-ahead goal 7:58 into the 3rd period as the Yellow Jackets clipped the Bentley hockey team 3-2 on Saturday night on Senior Night at Bentley Arena in the final regular season game of the season.
Bentley got on the board just 3:40 in as Jonathan Desbiens (Montreal, Quebec) struck his 11th goal of the season on the power play. Desbiens was positioned in front of the net, and Luke Santerno (Smithers, B.C.) fed him a pass from the left face-off circle that Desbiens redirected past goalie Stefano Durante to give Bentley the early lead.
On AIC's next trip down the ice, Falcons goalie Aidan Pelino (Oakville, Ontario) made a great glove save off a shot by Kyle Stephan after a break down the ice to keep the lead 1-0.
Bentley led 1-0 after the first period, but just 29 seconds into the second period, AIC cashed in on a power play chance that carried over from the previous period, as right wing Martin Mellberg scored to tie the game.
The Yellow Jackets went up 2-1 just past the midway point of the period on a goal by left wing Jared Pike.
But towards the end of the period, Bentley scored again on the power play off the stick of Kyle Schmidt (Menomonee Falls,Wisc.) with just 41 seconds left in the period for his 13th goal of the season. Desbiens had an initial shot on goal that was saved by Durante, but Schmidt crashed the net from the right and put the rebound past Durante to knot the game 2-2.
The second period ended 2-2, but AIC went ahead 7:58 into the third period on Luka's goal. The defenseman drove in from the left wing and flipped a shot into the top corner of the net to put the visitors in front.
Late in the game, AIC was called for too many men on the ice to put Bentley on the power play with 1:26 left. Pelino was then pulled for an extra-attacker to give Bentley a 6-on-4 advantage, but they couldn't convert and AIC held on for the win.
Bentley will now head to Pittsburgh to take on Robert Morris next weekend in the first round of the Atlantic Hockey playoffs. During the regular season, Bentley went 2-1-1 in four games against the Colonials, including a sweep at home in late November. The two teams last played in the postseason in the 2016 quarterfinals.