WATERTOWN, Mass. – Holy Cross defeated Bentley University 2-1 Saturday night to gain a split of the team's Atlantic Hockey series. Jake Youso and Evan Zych scored third period goals for the Crusaders to overcome a 1-0 deficit.
After Bentley won the series opener 4-1 in Worcester Friday night, the nation's second best scoring offense could only put one past Holy Cross goalie Matt Ginn on this night. Ginn made 31 saves to pick up his 12th victory of the season.
The first 35-plus minutes of the contest were scoreless, until Bentley's Alex Grieve (Calgary, Alberta/Westside Warriors) put them up 1-0 with a power play goal at 15:16 of the second period. Freshman Andrew Gladiuk (White Rock, British Columbia/Nanaimo Clippers) had the puck just inside the dot of the right face-off circle, and fed a cross-ice pass to Grieve on the far post. Ginn couldn't get back into position in time, and Grieve stuffed it in for his second goal of the series and ninth of the season.
Holy Cross though tied the score at 5:30 of the third period on the goal by Youso. Just over two minutes later at 7:41, Zych scored on the power play, beating Falcons goalie Branden Komm (Williamsville, N.Y./Nothfield Mount Hermon), who was screened on the play, up high with a wrist shot to give the Crusaders a 2-1 lead.
A penalty to Holy Cross' Karl Beckman with 2:48 remaining setup a frantic final few minutes. A shot from the point by defenseman Matt Blomquist (Blaine, Minn./Coulee Region Chill) hit the post, and moments later Komm was pulled to give Bentley a 6-on-4 advantage. Grieve then hit the post from close range to deny Bentley again.
Beckman's penalty expired with 48 seconds remaining and Bentley's net stayed open, but they could not find the tying goal. Blomquist got a shot off just before time expired, only for Ginn to make a pad save.
Bentley has its three-game winning streak snapped, dropping its record to 11-11-1 overall and 9-7-1 in Atlantic Hockey. The Crusaders improve to 13-9-2 and 9-6-2 in conference play.
The Falcons next get their crack at first-place Niagara, with the series taking place in Western New York. The first game of the series is Friday night at 7:05 pm.