WATERTOWN, Mass. – Freshman Ben Danford scored a power play goal 2:19 into overtime as Canisius defeated Bentley 3-2 on Sunday afternoon in Atlantic Hockey action, giving the Golden Griffins a split of the series.
Danford scored the goal just 27 seconds into the penalty. After taking a pass from senior Vincent Scarsella on the point, Danford blasted a slap shot through traffic in front of the net for the winner, ending a hard fought game.
Danford had a huge game for the Griffs, with a hand in all three of their goals as he assisted on the first two.
Bentley had two good chances themselves in overtime, both off the stick of junior Aaron Stonacek (Basehor, Kan./Fairbanks Ice Dogs). Twice Stonacek deflected shots in front of the net, but both times he was denied by Canisius rookie goalie Tony Capobianco, who made 31 saves to earn the win.
Overtime games at home have been a bugaboo for Bentley in recent seasons. They have not won at Ryan Skating Arena in OT since the 2006 Atlantic Hockey quarterfinals against Army, going 0-2-7 since that game.
Bentley went into the third period trailing 2-1, but a power play goal by sophomore Joe Campanelli (Pierrefonds, Quebec/Westminster Prep) at 12:06 tied it up.
Scarsella got the scoring started, netting his sixth goal of the season at 9:58 of the first. He set up on the left post among traffic in front of the goal, and beat senior goalie Joe Calvi (New Lenox, Ill./New England Jr. Huskies) to the glove side with a nifty wrist shot.
Stonacek got Bentley even just past the midway point of the second after he deflected in a shot that defenseman Ryan Kayfes (Maple Grove, Minn./Fairbanks Ice Dogs) took from the left face-off circle.
Canisius took the lead right back at 2-1 just over four minutes later on senior Cory Conacher's eighth goal of the season.
The loss snaps Bentley's three game winning streak and drops its record to 5-6-1 overall and 4-3 in Atlantic Hockey. The Griffs improve to 6-6-4 and 5-5-4.
Bentley hits the road for its next three games, beginning next weekend with a two-game series in Pittsburg against Robert Morris.
At Watertown, Mass.
Canisius (6-6-4, 5-5-4 AHA) 1 1 0 1 -- 3
Bentley (5-6-1, 4-3 AHA) 0 1 1 0 -- 2
1st Period: C, Vincent Scarsella (Cory Conacher, Ben Danford) 9:58
2nd Period: B, Aaron Stonacek (Ryan Kayfes, Joe Campanelli) 11:41; C, PP Conacher (Taylor Law, Danford) 15:42
Overtime: C, Danford (Scarsella, Wes Love) 2:19
Shots: B, 33; C, 28
Saves: B, Joe Calvi 25; C, Tony Capobianco 31
Penalties: B, 7-14; C, 5-10
Power Plays: B, 1-5; C, 2-7