Published October 21, 2011
Sweet Victory
The RIT Men's Hockey team salutes the Corner Crew after the thrilling Brick City Homecoming game at Blue Cross Arena in Downtown Rochester. RIT won the game, scoring 14 seconds into the sudden-death overtime after keeping themselves alive with a goal in the last ten seconds of regulation.
Josh Barber

Compared to a lengthy battle over three periods of play, 14 seconds seemed like a tiny speck of time. But in this speck , the uphill battle of the previous 60 minutes was forgotten as something happened that brought joy to every RIT hockey fan’s heart a game-winning goal.

Tied at 5-5 and heading into sudden-death overtime against the St. Lawrence Saints, there was clearly tension in the crowd. You could see the nervousness in their faces, and there was much doubt that RIT would pull out a win. But when second year Business Management major Adam Mitchell scored the goal that would seal the Tigers’ first victory of the regular season, the sellout crowd of 10,556 packed into Blue Cross Arena burst into cheers. This was the kind of win parents and alumni had come to see.

RIT goal tnder Shane Madalora deflects a Saint Lawrence shot sending the puck flying high over the net during the third period.
Josh Barber
A major event of Brick City Weekend, the homecoming game started quickly as the Tigers scored not four minutes into the game. The goal came when fourth year Marketing major Cameron Burt, who proved to be a star of the game, scored off a rebound shot fired by fourth year Environmental Sustainability major Daniel Spivak. Burt would go on to achieve an RIT Division I team record with five points on two goals and three assists. It is the second time in his career he has reached that milestone; both times at Blue Cross Arena.

Five minutes after Mitchell’s first goal, the Saints answered back when Kyle Flanagan stole the puck in the defensive zone and fed it to Jacob Drewiske, who played the give-and-go, getting the puck back to Flanagan for the score.

RIT players (from bottom to top) Adam Mitchell, Daniel Sivak and Brad McGowan watch a face off during the first period.
Josh Barber
Coming into the game, RIT head coach Wayne Wilson had a very simple strategy for his team: “We wanted to move our feet, get the puck deep, and create excitement and momentum. The strategy was to get a few points early on, get the crowd involved and keep them involved with as many goals as we could.”

And that’s exactly what they did. The crowd, loud and orange-clad, was tuned to the Tigers’ every move. Every goal was celebrated with screams of surprise, and “ohhs” were heard with every missed opportunity and bad penalty.

The two teams maintained a close score throughout, with each period ending in a tie. In the third period, St. Lawrence jumped ahead as Patrick Doherty scored twice in a span of 1:41 early in the period to give them the lead, one they would hold for nearly half the third period.

The Tigers’ comeback run began when third year Criminal Justice major Bryan Potts scored his second goal of the game on a power play, after an attempted centering pass went off the skate of a Saints defender and past Weninger. Second year Packaging Science major Greg Noyes and Burt assisted on the goal.

The game was tense at 5-4 in the third period with nine seconds left in the game when Burt leapt toward the puck to keep it in within shooting distance, and fired a shot that deflected off a St. Lawrence defensemen and the skate of Noyes. Third year Business Management major Adam Hartley, who was alone in tight, shot it past Weninger on the open right side, and sent the crowd into a frenzy and an already exciting game into overtime.

Brian Potts and Matt Garbowsky embrace as Ryan McReynolds skates to join them in celebrating Potts' second period goal.
Josh Barber
Immediately after the face-off in overtime, Spivak forced a turnover in the neutral zone, leading to Burt carrying the puck into the St. Lawrence zone and skirting around a forward. Burt passed the puck to first year Business major Brad McGowan, creating a 2-1 match-up with Mitchell, who was able to slide the puck past Weninger.

After the game, Burt acknowledged that St. Lawrence really tested the Tigers. “It was a very offensive game, they played hard and kept on us and they really gave us a chance to learn. All of the team stepped up to do their parts. We know they have some dynamic forces and can score at any point; we really had to contain them and play hard man-on-man defense.

While Burt was pleased with the offensive effort, he also acknowledged there was a lot that could’ve been done better. “We got the win today but we’re not going to win many games letting in 5 goals... and we have to try to stay out of the penalty box.”

Coach Wilson mirrored Burt's comment: “We scored on the power plays, but we need to do a better job not giving up those shorthanded opportunities ourselves.” With the win the Tigers are 2-7-0 against the Saints, with their last win against them occurring on October 28, 2005.

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