Men's Hockey Defeats AIC, 6-2, In Season-Opener

Brandon Nunn

WEST SPRINGFIELD, Mass. – Senior Brandon Nunn (Fairport, N.Y.) scored the game-winner to break a 2-2 tie early in the third period as the Holy Cross men's hockey team defeated American International, 6-2, at the Olympia Ice Center on Tuesday night in Atlantic Hockey action. The Crusaders open the season 1-0-0 overall (1-0-0 AHA), while the Yellow Jackets fall to 1-2-0 overall (0-1-0 AHA). The Crusaders remain undefeated in Atlantic Hockey season-openers as they are now 9-0-1.

The Crusaders took a 1-0 lead just 1:01 after the opening face-off when sophomore Jake Youso (International Falls, Minn.) sent a wrist shot to the right side of the goal off a pass from senior Rob Linsmayer (Winnetka, Ill.) for his first career goal. The Crusaders outshot the Yellow Jackets, 14-6, while AIC went 0-1 on the power play.

The Yellow Jackets tied the game at 1-1 at 1:31 of the second period when Jon Puskar found the back of the net off a breakaway for his second goal of the season. At 7:56, Puskar again went on a breakaway and fired the puck to the upper right corner of the net for his second goal of the game and his third of the season. The Crusaders tied the contest at 2-2 at 12:11 when sophomore Nilan Nagy (Canonsburg, Pa.) scored on a slap shot from the blue line for his first career goal. Nunn and senior Evan Zych (Kilbride, Ontario) posted assists on the goal. Each team took 13 shots, while the Crusaders went 0-1 on the man-advantage.     

Nunn gave the Crusaders a 3-2 lead just 31 seconds after the third period started with his first goal of the season. Senior Kyle Fletcher (Kanata, Ontario) and senior Erik Vos (Carlisle, Ontario) tallied assists. Just 16 seconds later, Linsmayer found the back of the net for his first goal of the season. Freshman Castan Sommer (Shrewsbury, Mass.) and Youso each posted an assist on the goal. The assist was Sommer's first collegiate point. Junior Mark Williamson (Centennial, Colo.) extended the lead to 5-2 at 13:19 when he stole a clear attempt and then sent the puck to the upper right corner of the net for his first career goal. Fletcher found the back of the net with 55 seconds left for the 6-2 final. Linsmayer and Nunn posted assists on the goal.   

Sophomore goalie Matt Ginn (Lindsay, Ontario) made 39 saves to earn the win, while Ben Meisner posted 41 and is now 1-2-0. The Crusaders outshot the Yellow Jackets, 47-41, while each team went 0-2 on the power play.

The Crusaders return to action when they will then travel to Potsdam, N.Y., to play Clarkson at Cheel Arena at 7:00 p.m., on Saturday, Oct. 20.