This past weekend the UNH Men’s Hockey team flew over to Colorado Springs, CO to take on the Colorado College Tigers in their second two-game weekend series. The first game, which was held on Friday, October 19 at the Broadmoor World Arena in Colorado Springs, CO started at 9:30 p.m. A total of 3,312 people attended the game between the Wildcats and Tigers.
During the beginning of the game, the Wildcats killed off two penalties while the game remained tied at 0-0. Then, with just one minute remaining in the first period, Colorado College Tiger first-year forward Grant Cruikshank hit a one-timer slapshot into the back of the net. Westin Michaud shot the faceoff over to first-year defenseman Bryan Yoon who then passed the puck to Cruikshank during the power-play. It was Cruikshank’s power-play goal that brought the game to 1-0.
UNH’s sophomore goalie Mike Robinson had a career-high 34 saves during the game, while the Tigers’ Alex Leclerc recorded 39.
In the second period, the Wildcats came back and tied the game at 1-1. Gildon, assisted by sophomore forward Charlie Kelleher and freshman defenseman Will MacKinnon, took a shot from the blue line to the glove side of the net. Not only was it the first goal for the Wildcat’s during the game, but it was also Gildon’s first goal of the season.
Junior forward Alex Berardinelli of the Tigers scored at 6:08 in the third period on a rebound, bringing the game to 2-1 with the Tigers leading. Two minutes and two seconds later at 8:09, Colorado College went up 3-2 after redshirt junior forward Chris Wilkie put a one-timer into the back of the net on a power-play. UNH Junior forward Liam Blackburn scored the equalizer when he knocked in the puck in front of the net. Gildon and sophomore forward Joe Sacco both recorded an assist in Blackburn’s first goal of the season. Neither team scored again that period, and the game went into a scoreless overtime. The final score for the Friday game in the Broadmoor World Arena was 3-3.
The following day UNH faced Colorado College once again, this time with only 2,984 people in attendance. The Tigers took an early lead scoring their first goal in just 1:43 of the first period when senior forward Trey Bradley scored. Yet, the Wildcats came back just a little over five minutes into the period when freshman forward Jackson Pierson passed the puck over to senior forward Ara Nazarian who sent a one-timer to the lower stick side of the net during the powerplay. Said powerplay goal was assisted by sophomore forward Charlie Kelleher.
First-year forward Ty Pochipinski came back at 7:52 with his first collegiate goal, bringing the Tigers up to 2-1. At 10:37 junior forward Nick Halloran brought the game to a 3-1. It was at this point that UNH replaced first-year goaltender Ty Taylor with Mike Robinson in net.
UNH brought the score up to 3-2 at 13:17 when the puck found the back of the net. The Tigers concluded the first period at 17:49 when Yoon scored a goal. Neither team scored during the second period.
With 2:55 left in the third period, the Wildcats abandoned their net for an extra skater. Nazarian and Gildon passed the puck to Vela and with just 2:31 left, Vela knocked the puck to the lower right side of the net. The UNH Wildcats were unable to score an equalizer, resulting in 4-3 as the final score of the second game against the Colorado College Tigers.
UNH’s next game will be their home opener at the Whittemore Center this Saturday, Oct. 27 versus Vermont at 7:00 p.m. The first 1,000 fans will receive the official game day t-shirt.