AMHERST, Mass. – Phil Johansson '19 netted what stood as the game-winning tally 6:45 into the second period as the Amherst College men's ice hockey team held on to upset archrival and No. 14 No. 14 Williams College, 1-0 Friday evening at Orr Rink.
With the win, Amherst improves to 3-1-3 on the season and to 1-0-3 in NESCAC play, while Williams suffers their first loss of the year and fall to 5-1-0 overall (4-1-0 NESCAC). Amherst returns to action tomorrow, Saturday, Dec. 9 when they host Middlebury College in a conference matchup beginning at 3 p.m.
Testing the Eph netminder 24 seconds after the opening faceoff, Stephen Morrissey stood strong early in the contest, turning away Patrick Daly's' 20 deke to his backhand on a breakaway and his ensuring attempt on the rebound.
Jack Fitzgerald '19 had another scoring chance for the Mammoths with 14:14 on the clock. Forechecking in the right corner, Max Roche '19 forced a turn over and sent a drop pass to a wide-open Fitzgerald on the face off dot, but his wrist shot rang off the crossbar as the score remained deadlocked.
Williams best chance of the period came just under a minute later as Jack McCool set up in front of the goal and got his stick on a shot by David Italiano, however the puck sailed inches wide of the net.
Roche drilled the second post of the tilt for Amherst at the 17:40 mark in the second stanza, picking the pocket of a defender at the right dot and powering a shot off the near bar.
Breaking through 6:45 into the period, Johansson netted his fourth goal of the winter to give the Mammoths a 1-0 lead. Corralling the loose puck at center ice, Johansson raced into the offensive end and slid through the keepers five-hole.
Wyatt Glover and McCool each had an opportunity for the Ephs in the final 6:35 before intermission, however Connor Girard '18 came up with the clutch stop on Glover's breakaway and turned away McCool's snap shot following a 2-v-1.
Earning a point-blank opportunity from the low slot with 11:41 remaining in regulation, Bobby Beniers nearly registered the equalizer for the Ephs, but Girard proved up to the task and logged the kick save.
Calling a timeout and pulling their goaltender with 2:02 on the clock, Williams pushed to even the battle with time winding down, however the Mammoths held their archrivals to just one shot attempt to hold on to the 1-0 victory.
- Girard (1-1-3) racked up 27 saves in between the pipes for Amherst in the winning effort, while Morrissey (2-0-0) made 34 stops for the Ephs in the loss.
- The Mammoths owned a 35-27 advantage in shot differential, while both sides finished 0-for-4 on the power play.