Five-minute major changes game for Army in loss to Canisius
And then in a flash it all went wrong.
Army dominated the first six minutes of their hockey game with Canisius tonight, but one play changed all that as the Golden Griffins took the momentum and went on to a 5-1 victory in front of a near sellout crowd on a cold and snowy night at Buffalo State College.
“I thought the first six, seven minutes we were kind of feeling each other out,” stated Army coach Brian Riley after the game. “The bottom line is that (five minute major) gives them momentum and it seems like we could never recover from that. It seemed from that point on we were chasing them all night”
The play in question happened with just over six minutes gone in the first period.
After a dump in, the play was whistled dead and Canisius forward Patrick Sullivan hit the Army player. That prompted Army freshman Andrew O’Leary to go in to the pile and crosscheck Sullivan.
The crosscheck to the face by O’Leary earned the Norwich, Vermont native a five minute major and a game misconduct.
The Golden Griffins would use the momentum to score once on the power play, on a nice give and goal in which Ryan Bohrer scored. And again three minutes later when Matthew Grazen scored off a faceoff.
What was a close game early on, all of sudden saw Canisius dominating and Army put back on its heals.
“Andrew just decided to go in a crosscheck a kid it’s unacceptable,” explained Riley. “And we paid the price for it. And it was the right call.”
After Canisius made it 3-0 early in the second, the Black Knights tried to fight back and was able to cut the lead to 3-1 when senior defenseman John Clark’s shot from the point somehow eluded all the bodies in the front and beat Canisius goaltender Tony Capobianco high to the glove side.
Any inkling of a comeback however was short lived as Canisius scored once more in the second and again in the third for the final score.
One of the problems for the Black Knights was the fact they couldn’t get any rhythm as they sat in the penalty box. And the other was they just couldn’t get pressure on Canisius in their zone.
“This kid is a very good goalie and if he sees the shot he is going to save them all night,” said Riley. “You have to try and get some traffic in front of him. You have to have guys willing to get in front of the net. And we didn’t do that tonight.
Game two of the series will be at 7:05 p.m. Sunday night at Buffalo State College.