Tigers Win Playoff Opener

Photo by Beverly Schaefer
Photo by Beverly Schaefer
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PRINCETON (3/4/11) - The Princeton men's hockey team opened the postseason with a 4-1 win over St. Lawrence in the first game of a best-of-three ECAC Hockey first-round series on Friday night at Hobey Baker Rink. Andrew Calof opened the scoring 1:40 into the win and Matt Arhontas had the game winner six minutes into the second.

Calof and Kevin Lohry led Princeton with two points apiece in the win and Michael Sdao and Rob Kleebaum had Princeton's third and fourth goals.

St. Lawrence started the game with a flurry and had a few shots on Princeton's Sean Bonar in the opening minute but as often happens when the play went the other way Calof converted on Princeton's first chance of the night. Derrick Pallis gave him the puck in the neutral zone and Calof carried it into the Saint end, eventually pulling Saint netminder Robby Moss out of the crease before shooting it around him. The goal was his eighth of the season and it was his team-leading 31st point.

The teams battled through and even first period and the second started that way but Princeton got the separation it needed at 6:18 of the first on Arhontas' eighth goal of the season. Eric Meland took a shot from the left circle that Arhontas tipped in front of Moss and the puck bounced off Moss' shoulder and up and over him into the net.

Lohry had an assist on the goal and added his second helper just over a minute later when Princeton scored on the power play. Meland tied up his man on an offensive zone draw, allowing Lohry to knock the puck to Sdao at the point, where he waited for a screen and beat Moss for his third goal of the season.

St. Lawrence would add a power-play goal from Kyle Flanagan midway through the second, but Princeton capped the scoring in the third on Kleebaum 11th of the year after Calof sprung him on a breakaway. Mike Kramer also had an assist on the goal.

The rest of the night belonged to Bonar who made 22 saves for the win. Moss and Matt Weninger combined for 32 saves as Princeton outshot St. Lawrence 36-22.

Princeton is now 17-11-2 overall and will go for the series sweep on Saturday afternoon at 4 p.m.