RPI Tripped Up by No. 16 Yale in Overtime

TROY, N.Y. ­­– The 16th-ranked Yale University men's hockey team scored three goals in a span of 3:22 seconds to beat Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI), 3-2 in overtime, on Saturday night at the Houston Field House. With the win, the Bulldogs improve to 2-1-0 overall (1-1-0 ECAC Hockey), while the Engineers drop to 2-6-1 (1-3-0 ECAC Hockey).

Trailing 2-0, Yale pulled to within a goal on a power play tally by senior Frankie DiChiara (Ronkonkoma, NY/Dubuque) with 2:59 remaining in the third period. Sophomore Adam Larkin (Clarkston, MI/Muskegon) and freshman Chandler Lindstrand (Medina, MN/Des Moines) picked up the assists.

Senior John Hayden (Greenwich, CT/US National Dev. Team) then tied the game in the final minute, with junior goaltender Patrick Spano (Montreal, PQ/Cowichan Valley) pulled for an extra attacker. Junior Ryan Hitchock (Manhasset, NY/US National Dev. Team) took a shot from the left circle and the rebound popped to Hayden for the easy finish from close range.

The game then went to overtime and the Bulldogs converted on the power play again, as Hayden chipped the puck over RPI sophomore goaltender Chase Perry (Andover, MN/Wenatchee Wild) for his second goal of the game. Helpers went to sophomore Joe Snively (Herndon, VA/Sioux City) and Hitchcock.

Following a scoreless opening frame, in which Yale held a 11-4 edge in shots, it was the Engineers who got on the board first. Junior Drew Melanson (Paramus, NJ/Waterloo Black Hawks) netted his third goal in two nights at 15:25 of the frame, ripping a shot from the right circle that deflected in off the left post. Sophomore Evan Tironese (Qualicum Beach, BC/Alberni Valley Bulldogs) and senior captain Riley Bourbonnais (Rochester, NY/Lincolns Stars) had the assists.

RPI then took a 2-0 lead, 14:33 into the third period. A shot from the point by junior Mike Prapavessis(Oakville, ON/Toronto Patriots) was redirected home by classmate Viktor Liljegren (Stockholm, Sweden/Fairbanks Ice Dogs), with the second helper going to freshman Jacob Hayhurst (Missassauga, ON/Cedar Rapids Roughriders).

Spano (2-1-0) finished with 19 saves, while Perry (1-5-1) had 35, including all 14 shots he faced in the second period. Yale was 3 for 6 on the power play, while RPI went 1 for 6.

The Engineers return to action next weekend, when they host Clarkson and St. Lawrence on Friday (7pm) and Saturday (7pm), respectively. Yale hosts Colgate and Cornell next weekend.