The ninth try wasn’t a charm for Colorado College.
Winless in its previous eight weekend openers, No. 10 CC continued an awful streak and lost momentum from Sunday’s victory over No. 4 Minnesota by tying Sacred Heart 2-2 on Friday before an announced crowd of 5,991 at World Arena.
After CC (10-6-5) erased a 1-0 deficit on second-period goals by Brian McMillin and Brian Connelly, Matt Gordon scored the equalizer 36 seconds into the third to drop the Tigers to 0-5-4 in their past nine opening games of weekends.
It’s the closest Sacred Heart, of the Atlantic Hockey Association, has come to a win in Colorado. The Pioneers (4-9-3) lost at Denver last season, and they’re 0-4-2 at Air Force the past 10 seasons.
“A loss would have really hurt,” said CC coach Scott Owens, who will replace goaltender Richard Bachman with Drew O’Connell for the series finale at 7:07 p.m. today. “A tie keeps it in there, but it was a wasted opportunity.”
Gordon caught Bachman out of position on the game-tying goal, blasting a wrist shot low to the stick side after Dave Grimson sent a shot off the boards behind the net.
Bachman said he “didn’t know where (the puck) went. I heard it hit the boards. Then I saw it on the guy’s stick, but he had time to turn around and fire.”
The Tigers, with a 42-26 shot advantage minus injured players Jake Gannon, Scott McCulloch and Matt Overman, hardly solved their reoccurring problems.
Hampered by sloppy passing, CC converted one of five power-play chances against a Sacred Heart penalty kill that’s 75.8 percent, the third-worst mark among 58 Division I teams, and couldn’t rattle Stefan Drew, who is giving up 3.64 goals per game.
Mike Testwuide remained scoreless. Andreas Vlassopoulos saw his scoreless streak extended to 13 games. And Eric Walsky went scoreless for the eighth straight game.
“It’s a team that’s out of sync. It’s a team that’s confused,” Owens said. “I didn’t think we worked hard enough in the interior to make good plays, I thought we were easy to play against and I think you’ve got to credit them.”
Bachman stressed the need for a turnaround, considering CC is 20th in the College Hockey News PairWise rankings used to predict the 16-team NCAA Tournament field.
“We’re throwing our season away on these Friday nights,” he said. “Every weekend, it’s the same story, and we’re not getting anywhere.”
COLORADO COLLEGE 2, SACRED HEART 2
Sacred Heart 1 0 1 0 – 2
Colorado College 0 2 0 0 – 2
First period – 1. Sacred Heart, Grimson 2 (Giosa, Jarman), 16:26 (pp). Penalties – Jarman, Sacred Heart (hooking), 11:32. Schultz, CC (holding the stick), 15:29.
Second period – 2. CC, McMillin 1 (Civitarese, Lowery), 8:43. 3. CC, Connelly 2 (Prosser, Sweatt), 16:12 (pp). Penalties – Connelly, CC (roughing), 0:28. Johnson, Sacred Heart (slashing), 1:31. Johnson, Sacred Heart (hooking), 10:54. Jarman, Sacred Heart (slashing), 15:19.
Third period – 4. Sacred Heart, Gordon 2 (Grimson, Jarman), 0:36. Penalties – Knowlton, Sacred Heart (roughing), 1:42. Johnson, CC (roughing), 1:42. Tyll, Sacred Heart (roughing), 1:42. Johnson, CC (tripping), 17:59.
Overtime – None. Penalties – None.
Shots on goal – Sacred Heart 9-6-8-3-26. CC 16-15-9-2-42. Power-play Opportunities – Sacred Heart 1 of 3. CC 1 of 5. Goalies – Sacred Heart, Drew 16-13-9-2 (42 shots-40 saves). CC, Bachman 8-6-7-3 (26 shots-24 saves). A – 5,991. T – 2:18. Referees – Pete Friesema, Tim Walsh . Linesmen – Greg Rockenback, Stephen Stankevich.