Stonehill Clinches Share Of NE-10 Title With 2-1 Win At Franklin Pierce

Senior Chris Tasiopoulos made 29 saves as Stonehill clinched a share of the regular season NE-10 title with its 2-1 win at Franklin Pierce tonight.

Skyhawks will host a semifinal round contest in next weekend's NE-10 Tournament

WINCHENDON, Mass. (February 12, 2015) – The Stonehill College ice hockey team clinched a share of its second consecutive Northeast-10 Conference regular season championship tonight with a 2-1 victory over Franklin Pierce University at the Jason Ritchie Ice Arena.

With tonight's win, Stonehill secures one of the top two seeds and a home game in next weekend's NE-10 Tournament semifinal round. The Skyhawks, who will finish the regular season tied atop the conference standings with Saint Michael's College, will have their seed decided tomorrow morning when the league conducts a tie-breaking coin flip.

Juniors Anthony D'Elia (Stamford, Connecticut/Gunnery School) and Tom Jenkins (Canton, Massachusetts/Williston Northampton) provided the offense for Stonehill this evening with second period goals, while senior netminder Chris Tasiopoulos (Norwell, Massachusetts/Thayer Academy) made 29 saves in 30 opportunities between the pipes.

Senior Stephen Balsamo (Atkinson, New Hampshire/Brewster Academy), juniors Travis Army (Englewood, Colorado/Worcester Academy) and Willy Baker (Suffern, New York/Hill School), and freshman Tommy Newton (Hollis, New Hampshire/Portland Jr. Pirates) chipped in with one assist each.

Senior Bryan Gillentine (Atlanta, Georgia/Kents Hill) scored Franklin Pierce's lone goal, while junior goaltender Kyle Moran (Marshfield, Massachusetts/Marshfield) made 29 saves in net. 

Gillentine staked the Ravens to a 1-0 lead 14:16 into the opening period, when he cleaned up a loose puck in front of the net for his first goal of the season. Freshmen Jonathan Haun (Buffalo, New York/Syracuse Stars) and Evan Marek (Enfield, Connecticut/Washington Jr. Nationals) were credited with assists on the play. The Ravens carried their one-goal lead into the first intermission despite being outshot 15-9.

Stonehill equalized just 13 seconds into the second period, as D'Elia snuck a shot from the right circle past Moran following a feed from Army. The Skyhawks then pulled ahead midway through the period when Balsamo and Newton set up Jenkins for a goal that struck the post before finding its way into the net at the 10:19 mark.

Tasiopoulos made ten of his 29 saves in the third period to seal the win as Stonehill improved to 18-0-2 in its last 20 regular season conference contests.

Neither team was able to convert with a man advantage tonight, as Franklin Pierce went 0-for-3 on the power play and the Skyhawks were 0-for-2. Stonehill held a slim 31-30 edge in shots, despite being outshot 21-16 over the final two periods.

Stonehill (13-5-4, 7-0-2 NE-10) will be on the road for the third time this week on Saturday night at Assumption College, while Franklin Pierce (3-18-1, 2-6-1 NE-10) returns to action on Monday night at home against Assumption. Stonehill will host Franklin Pierce next Wednesday night in the regular season finale for both teams on senior night at the Foxboro Sports Center.

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