Niagara Gazette

Sports

February 22, 2014

NU ties AHA leader

Niagara Gazette — The Niagara Purple Eagles battled back from two goals down and earned a hard-fought 3-3 tie with Atlantic Hockey Association-leading Mercyhurst on Friday night in conference action at the Mercyhurst Ice Center.

The Lakers (17-12-6, 15-4-5 AHA) jumped out to a 2-0 lead after 20 minutes of play, but the Purple Eagles (10-16-5, 10-9-5 AHA) were able to fight back into the contest first from a pair of goals down, and then from a goal down in the third period to send the contest into extra time.

The Lakers had a power play opportunity in the opening minutes of overtime, getting five looks on net, but the NU penalty killing unit kept its opponent at bay while a man-up for the third consecutive game.

“We weren’t happy with our first period. We told the guys after during intermission that it wasn’t a good effort from us despite getting 11 shots on goal,” said NU coach Dave Burkholder. “After challenging the team after the period they came out ready to go in the second. If we play like we did in the last 40 minutes can win every game in Atlantic Hockey. The work ethic was there. The hitting was there. Second opportunities were taken advantage of. It was a very good hockey game from both ends. I’m very pleased with the effort.”

Starting Niagara goaltender Jackson Teichroeb pushed his record to 4-10-3 on the season with 33 stops on the evening. For the second consecutive game NU was able to muster a 40-shot effort, firing a season-high 47 shots on Mercyhurst goaltender Jimmy Sarjeant.

Niagara went 0 for 1 on the power play, and stopped all three Mercyhurst man-up opportunities.

“I told Teichroeb at the start of the game that it was his net,” Burkholder added. “I think this team could jump on his back for the rest of the season. I thought he made a few huge saves, especially during Mercyhurst’s power play in overtime. That’s exactly what we need back there.”

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