HANOVER, N.H. -
Holding a one-goal lead midway through the third period wasn't enough for the 12th-ranked Dartmouth men's hockey team Friday night at Thompson Arena.
St. Lawrence's top line of Greg Carey, Kyle Flanagan and Jeremy Wick scored three times in the final frame to stun the Big Green, handing them their first ECAC Hockey home loss of 2012-13 and just the second overall in 10 games (8-2-0) played in Hanover.
Despite a late push with two extra players in the waning minutes, the Green (10-7-2, 6-5-1 ECAC) were unable to find the equalizer, falling to the Saints, 4-2.
"I thought it was a good game and we were well prepared," head coach Bob Gaudet
said following the loss. "I think we played well, but St. Lawrence is a very good team that took advantage of key situations. That was really the difference."
"You have to give them a lot of credit for scoring those goals in the third period, but at the same time, our guys battled really hard and to the very end," he added.
Making his first start since a Jan. 5 loss at Princeton, freshman goaltender Charles Grant
finished the night with 22 saves for the home team, while Saints' goaltender Matt Weninger was tasked with turning aside 31 in the winning effort.
What seemed like a game that was in Dartmouth's control for roughly 45 minutes slipped away in the third. However, the night's scoring began with one of the season's most unlikely markers.
With 1.4 seconds remaining in the first period, sophomore Andy Simpson
threw a last-ditch effort shot through a crowd from the right halfboards that redirected off Weninger's left skate and into the net for a power-play marker.
St. Lawrence (10-10-3, 3-5-3 ECAC) defender Pat Riley batted a puck into the corner with a high stick, but the play continued after Simpson beat everyone to the boards and swung around for the ice-level shot that somehow went untouched through a sizeable crowd at the bottom of the circle.
Jeremy Wick answered back early on in the middle frame, capitalizing on a Dartmouth penalty with a power-play goal at 3:48 to tie the game at one apiece.
Continuing the trend of late-period Big Green heroics, Dustin Walsh
scored with 50 seconds left in the second. Stepping out of the penalty box, sophomore Matt Lindblad
hit the winger in stride to set up a breakaway that Walsh finished by sliding a backhander along the ice between Weninger's pads for the 2-1 lead.
Flanagan, ECAC Hockey's leading scorer, pulled his team even with a shortside one-timer on a rush up the right boards at 6:46. That tie lasted less than two minutes as linemate Carey knocked a loose puck beyond Grant's reach in a scrum while stationed just outside the crease to give the visitors their first lead of the night at 3-2.
Wick's second of the contest came with just 7:10 left in the third and all but sealed the win for the Saints, who remain unbeaten at Thompson Arena in the last two seasons (2-0-1).
Special teams seemed to play a major role in this game as a combined 12 power plays littered the 60 minutes of action. Two of the least penalized teams in the league and country together posted 48 minutes of penalties on 16 different infractions.
The Green and White were 1-for-7 with the man-advantage, while the opposition cashed in on one of its five power plays.
"We're a young team that's very resilient. We'll be back and ready for tomorrow night," Gaudet remarked of the team's short turnaround before taking on Clarkson fresh off a 4-1 win at Harvard Saturday night at 7 p.m.