Axemen make it a perfect weekend, downing Northeastern

Acadia knocks off No. 16 Huskies in exhibition play, 3-2

Axemen coach Darren Burns believed the weekend was a building block for his team saying, “It was a great weekend for our program. The team worked very hard, we played two very good teams in Northeastern and Quinnipiac. We need to make sure we use this to help us prepare to play next weekend.”

Athletics - ABOSTON – Zach Aston-Reese and Kevin Roy both scored for the No. 16 Northeastern men’s ice hockey team, but an Acadia goal midway through the third period sealed the victory for the Axemen in exhibition play on Sunday afternoon at Matthews Arena, 3-2.

The Huskies fought back in the final period to tie the game with 11:41 left in regulation, but Acadia fired right back with the eventual game-winning goal from Alex Beaton less than two minutes later.

Clay Witt (nine saves) and Derick Roy (15 saves) split time in goal for NU, which outshot Acadia 34-27 in the game. NU converted on one of its five power play opportunities in the game while holding the Axemen to an 0-of-4 showing on the man advantage.

NU came out and took control of the game early, outshooting the Axemen 11-7 and scoring the period’s lone goal midway through the frame. Aston-Reese created Northeastern’s first scoring chance of the afternoon when he broke through the Acadia defense and went in alone on Glover. Stephen Woodworth raced to catch up, and hauled down Aston-Reese in the act of shooting, resulting in a penalty shot being awarded to the Huskies.Β  Aston-Reese took the penalty shot, beating Glover five-hole for the score.

Acadia had a chance to tie the game on their lone power play of the frame when the power play unit collapsed in on Witt, but the NU defense stood tall in the final seconds of the minor penalty to Jake Schechter.

Garret Cockerill nearly put the Huskies up two late in the period with NU on the power play when he fired a shot through traffic that rang off the crossbar.

The Axemen knotted the score at one six minutes into the second period during four-on-four play following an NU turnover in the offensive zone. After Tyler Ferry got a stick on a Husky centering bid, Liam Heelis scooped up the loose puck, went coast to coast and tossed a backhand over Witt’s left shoulder to make it 1-1.

Both offenses hit a lull during most of the period as penalties took over the game, with a combined 17 minutes of infractions called between the two teams.

With the Huskies on an abbreviated power play with two minutes left in the frame, Colton Saucerman fired a shot off the post off a pass from the right side, NU’s best chance of the middle stanza.

Acadia would take a one-goal lead into the dressing room with less than a minute left in the period as Boston Leier redirected a shot from Matthew Pufahl at the point past Roy, who replaced Witt midway through the frame.

Northeastern maintained puck possession during the opening minutes of the third period in search of the game-tying goal. It wasn’t until the 8:19 mark of the third when Kevin Roy found the back of the net with NU on the power play. After Cockerill dished down to Saucerman at the left dot, Saucerman spotted Roy across the zone. An Axemen defender poked Saucerman’s pass on its way to Roy, but the junior forward quickly settled the puck and slung it under Glover for the score.

Acadia struck back less than two minutes later, however, when Alex Beaton beat Derick Roy inside the right post to make it 3-2 Axemen with 10:10 left in regulation.

The teams traded penalties throughout the remainder of the frame, and the Huskies pulled Roy in favor of the extra skater with less than two minutes to play. NU nearly tied the game and forced overtime in the final seconds when a loose puck fell on to the stick of Kevin Roy, but his shot on the bouncing puck went just wide, allowing the Axemen to escape with the win.

Acadia now travels home to Wolfville and will spend the week preparing for their season opener on Saturday night, when they head to Halifax to take on the Dalhousie Tigers at 7pm at the Halifax Forum.

Article submitted in part on http://www.gonu.com