CANTON, NY -- Three straight goals, including two in the first period, helped No. 11/12 Cornell to a 4-2 win over the St. Lawrence men's hockey team on Friday night at Appleton Arena.
Cade Gleekel and Jake Stevens scored for the Saints in the loss, while Zach Risteau and Philip Alftberg tallied assists.
St. Lawrence outshot Cornell 31-22, with a 17-3 edge in shots on goal in the third period. The Saints also finished 1-for-3 on the power play, while Cornell went 0-for-4.
Michael Regush opened the scoring for the Big Red with a back door finish on a rush with Cam Donaldson and Morgan Barron at 13:12 of the first period, before extending the Cornell lead to 2-0 just over two minutes later.
At 3:26 of the second period, Cornell's Connor Murphy won a draw back to Brendan Smith on the half wall. Smith's wrister trickled through the five hole for the eventual game-winning goal on starter Emil Zetterquist and made it 3-0 in favor of the visitors.
Zetterquist was pulled in favor of junior netminder Daniel Mannella after Murphy's tally and finished with nine saves in 23:26.
At 6:45 of the middle frame, Risteau was stopped on an odd-man rush by Cornell's Matthew Galajda, but Gleekel was trailing and the play and was able to backhand swing the puck out of midair on the near post for his eighth of the season to make it a 3-1 game.
In the final minute of the second period Cornell regained its three-goal lead with Cam Donaldson's 12th of the season on a backhand shot cutting through the slot for the team's fourth and final goal of the night.
Jake Stevens concluded the scoring with a power play goal at 13:27 of the third, as he picked up the loose puck after his first shot was blocked at the top of the circle and beat Galajda high on the glove side with a shot through traffic for his third of the season.
Galajda finished with 29 saves for the Big Red in the win, while Mannella stopped nine in relief of Zetterquist.
With the loss, the Saints drop to 4-27-2 overall with a 2-17-2 mark in conference play. Cornell improves to 17-8-3 and 13-5-3 against ECAC Hockey opponents.
The league playoff race is still too close to call, but Cornell clinched a first-round bye with its win on Friday night. St. Lawrence will travel to either Yale or Dartmouth next weekend, depending on Saturday's results to close out the regular season.
The Saints will finish their home schedule against Colgate on Saturday night at 7 p.m. with a celebration for the Class to 2019 to follow.