PITTSBURGH, Pa. – Bentley pressured Robert Morris late for the tying goal, but couldn't come up with it as the Colonials hung on for a 3-2 victory over the Falcons on Sunday night to win the first round Atlantic Hockey playoff series two games to one and advance to the quarterfinals.
Bentley had a erased a 2-0 deficit with power play goals from Kyle Schmidt (Menomonee Falls, Wisc.) late in the first period and defenseman Charlie Marchand (Calgary, Alberta) midway through the second period. But RMU's Daniel Mantenuto scored the go-ahead goal at 15:18 of the second period.
The Falcons through pressured the Colonials throughout the third period in search of the tying goal. They outshot RMU 14-9. One of their best chances came shorthanded and inside the final three minutes, when senior Andrew McDonald (New Brighton, Minn.) had an excellent chance from the left wing robbed by RMU goalie Francis Marotte with a blocker save.
Once they were back to full-strength, goalie Aidan Pelino (Oakville, Ontario) was pulled for an extra-attacker with 1:49 remaining. Bentley got four shots on goal, two by Jonathan Desbiens (Montreal, Quebec), but Marotte stopped all four to help the Colonials hang on for the victory.
Earlier in the game, RMU led 2-0 after goals a little more than four minutes apart in the first period by Michael Louria and Alex Tonge, at the 13:46 and 17:55 marks, respectively. But just 45 seconds after Tonge's goal, Schmidt fired in a power play goal, his 15th goal of the season, assisted by Desbiens and Tanner Jago (Brandon, Manitoba).
Just past the halfway point of the second period, Bentley scored its fifth power play of the series to tie the game 2-2. Luke Santerno (Smithers, B.C.) won a face-off in the offensive zone, and quick passing from Desbiens to Jago found Marchand on the point, who blasted a shot past Marotte for his second goal of the series at 10:57.
Mantenuto though would score the eventual game-winner at 15:18, after he got his stick on a rebound in front of the net off a shot that Pelino saved from Brandon Watt.
Bentley ended the game with a 33-28 edge in shots.
With the win, Robert Morris has advanced to the quarterfinals next weekend, where they will face Holy Cross, while the Falcons have been eliminated.