AMHERST, Mass. – A strong performance by the Mammoths in the first and third period led the team to victory as the Amherst College men's ice hockey team powered past Colby, 5-1 Saturday afternoon at Orr Rink.
With the win, Amherst improves to 9-7-4 on the season and to 6-4-4 in league play, while Colby falls to 10-10-0 (7-7-0 NESCAC). Amherst returns to action on Saturday, Feb. 10 when they host Tufts at Orr Rink. Puck is set to drop at 7:30 p.m.
Taking advantage of a forced turnover behind the net with 7:07 on the clock in the opening period, the Mammoths jumped out to a 1-0 lead. Stopping short in the corner to gain space from his defender, Max Roche '19 slid a perfect pass to Nick Bondra '21 on the left hash who one-time a shot over the pad of the sliding keeper and into the bottom right corner.
On the power play following a Mules slashing call, Noah Gilreath '20 tallied his second goal of the winter to double the Amherst lead to 2-0. Working the puck around the zone, Gilreath collected a dish from Phil Johansson '19 at the top of the point and powered a low shot on the ice off a defenders skate and over the goal line.
Colby returned the favor 7:30 into the second stanza, with Michael Decker netting a power play score to bring the Mules back into striking distance. One-timing a dish from Kienan Scott at the left point, Decker beat the Mammoth goaltender, five-hole.
Patrick Mooney '18 kicked off a three goal third period by the Mammoths at the 4:29 mark, as he faked the initial shot at the left point to juke out his defender before ripping a wrister into the nylon.
Extending Amherst's lead 14 seconds later, Jack Fitzgerald '19 made it 4-1 in favor of the home team. Crashing the net as the Mammoths raced into the zone on a 3-on-2, Fitzgerald buried his attempt on the rebound after a shot by Bondra was denied.
Corey Goldstein '21 first collegiate goal gave the Mammoths a 5-1 cushion, with the first-year beating his defender to a loose puck in front of the goal and stuffing a shot past the Colby netminder with 5:38 remaining in regulation.
The Mules upped their offensive pressure in the final five minutes in a bid to decrease the scoring margin, however Dan Dupont's shot at the 18:55 mark rang off the post and Connor Girard '18 stood strong in goal to make seven saves for the Mammoths with time winding down to seal the 5-1 victory.
- In between the pipes, Girard (6-4-4) racked up 20 saves in the winning effort for Amherst, while Sean Lawrence (9-6-0) made 25 stops for the Mules in the loss.
- The Mammoths owned a 30-21 advantage in shot differential, including a 12-4 edge in the opening period.
- Both sides converted on the power play, with Amherst going 1-for-3 and Colby finishing 1-for-4.