2014 Pulitzer Prize Winner

Providence battles back to forge 2-2 tie

Published: January 17, 2014, 8:24 pm, by Joe Paisley

Krusher 2Colorado College hockey came tantalizingly close to securing a big-time win over a ranked foe.

But during a 2-15-4 season, the Tigers could not hold on.

Providence sophomore Mark Jankowski knocked in a rebound in front with 19.8 seconds left to force overtime, when the two foes skated to a 2-2 tie on Friday.

The goal tied the game after CC had scored the greasy goal it was hungry for it gave the Tigers a 2-1 lead with only 2:39 remaining.

Junior Charlie Taft backhanded in a pass to the front by senior Alexander Krushelnyski,  slipping the puck past Providence sophomore goalie Jon Gillies to delight the crowd.

Overtime ended with Gillies (27 saves) stopping Taft as the clock expired.

“It’s been the story for most of our season so far. We come close but we let it slip through our fingers,” Taft said. “That could have been a big win for us.”

The crowd got a lift when CC won the exhibition shootout afterward on scores by Krushelnyski, Scott Wmsganz, and DiGiando.

Earlier, Krushelnyski gave the Tigers offense the spark it needed when he recorded his second shorthanded goal this season, eighth of his career, off a perfect pass by junior defenseman Peter Stoykewych.

CC senior Eamonn McDermott started the play, collecting the puck and passing over the Stoykewych who passed from the CC zone out past center ice where Krushelnyski collected the pass in stride. He split the Friars defenders and raced in, firing a shot that went in off the inside of Gillies’ right leg with 16:59 left in the second.

But the lead would last only 2:17 when Providence defenseman Steven Shamanski fired a short-range shot that sped past Tigers senior goalie Josh Thorimbert’s glove attempt and went in off the near post to make it 1-1.

But instead of hanging their heads, the Tigers stepped up their play. They held the Friars to nine shots in the second after allowing 18 in the first period and flirted with scoring the go-ahead goal.

Colorado College nearly scored on the power play but a shot by Krushelnyski from between the circles clanged off the crossbar with 7:25 left.

“We played a good second and third periods,” Tigers coach Scott Owens said. “I was happy to see that front-of-the-net goal. But we still have to learn how to close things out. It’s tough on the guys. We played decent in the overtime and it was good to win the (exhibition) shootout for the guys and the fans.”

Fittingly for a tightly contested game, the second period ended with junior forward Scott Wamsganz tying up the puck along the boards against two Friars

The Tigers survived a dangerous power play for Providence that included 10 shots on goal midway through the opening period to keep the nonconference game scoreless early. It was all Thorimbert, who threw himself all over the crease to make the 10 stops, finishing with 18 for the period.

“That could have been disastrous for us,” Owens said. “There were a couple big-time saves in there. It is disappointing he couldn’t get the win.”

The Tigers defense in front of him performed well the rest of the period, making six blocks to keep the shots margin at 18-7.

No. 7 Providence 2, Colorado College 2 OT

Providence       0          1          1          0          –1

Colorado College         0          1          1          0          –1

First period – No scoring. Penalties – PC, McParland, holding, 5:49; CC, Fejes, hooking, 8:33; CC, Olofsson, tripping, 11:29; PC, MacPhee, cross-checking, 17:33.

Second period – 1. CC, Krushelnyski (Stoykewych, McDermott) 3:01 (SH); 2. PC, Shamanski (Jankowski, Mingoia) 5:18. Penalties –  CC, Fejes, holding, 1:25; PC, McParland, tripping, 11:58; CC, Hanson, high-sticking, 17:57.

Third period – 3. CC, Taft (Krushelnyski) 17:21; 4. PC, Jankowski (Aciari, Gilmour) 19:40 (EX). Penalties – PC, Saracino, checking from behind, :42; CC, Rothstein, tripping, 7:32; PC, Shamanski, interference, 9:01.

Overtime – No scoring.

Exhibition shootout – CC 3 (Krushelnyski, Wamsganz, DiGiando), PC 1 (Jankowski).

Power play – PC 0-4, CC 0-4. Shots on goal – PC 18-9-8-2 – 37; CC 7-11-8-3 – 29. Saves-minutes – PC, Gillies 7-10-7-3 – 65:00; CC, Thorimbert 18-8-7-2– 65:00. Referees – Patafie, Sullivan. Linesmen – Mousseaux, Mukai. Attendance – 5,542 (7,380 capacity).