The St. Thomas Aquinas College Club Ice Hockey team scored four consecutive goals en route to a hard fought 6-4 come from behind victory over the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy Kings Point Mariners on Wednesday evening at Sport-O-Rama, in the Spartans final home game for 2017.
Kings Point got the scoring started early in the opening period, when Brandon Gyrion was able to put the puck past STAC netminder Peter Gianatiempo, making 1-0. Just 2:33 later the Spartans tied things up at one goal apiece on a Douglas Harrison tally. However, the Mariners were not done scoring and were able to net two more goals by Anthony Testa and Joe Gramegna, making it 3-1 with just under thirteen minutes left. STAC was not going quietly on this evening and cut the deficit to one, as defenseman Andrew Rafferty was able to deposit the puck behind Lawrence Balsamo with just over five and a half minutes remaining in the first, and USMMA held a slim 3-2 lead at the end of one.
In the second period, Kings Point was once again able to regain their two goal lead, when Patrick Hegarty scored shorthanded, giving the Mariners a 4-2 advantage with ten and half minutes to go in the middle stanza. Before the next face-off, Head Coach Matt Schuster decided to make a change between the pipes, as Carl Lorenz entered the game for the Spartans. St. Thomas Aquinas then cut into the lead again late in the period, as Matthew Briante put one home, making it 4-3 USMMA after two.
The third period was one for the ages, as the Spartans were able to tie things up at four, when Alex Ordonez put the biscuit in the basket and awakened the members of the Spartan Army in attendance. With the raucous crowd now on their feet, St. Thomas Aquinas was awaiting their chance to pounce, and did so with just 2:20 left in regulation as Patrick Burns took a pass from linemate Harrison and rifled it by Mariner goaltender Balsamo giving STAC the lead at 5-4. A quick time out by Kings Point and the decision to pull their goalie in favor of an extra attacker, saw a helter skelter last two minutes. However, St. Thomas Aquinas was able to seal the deal on another Pat Burns goal, this one an empty netter, as he was fouled from behind on a breakaway, giving the Spartans the 6-4 come from behind victory.
Spartan Goalie Carl Lorenz (W, 3-7-1) stopped all 18 shots faced to pick up the win in relief.
Shots on goal for the game were 29 for St. Thomas Aquinas and 35 for Kings Point.
The Spartans conclude the Fall Semester portion of their schedule with back-to-back road games at Fordham University (December 8th, 10pm), followed by Hofstra University (December 9th, 7pm).