COLUMBUS, Ohio Clarkson snapped No. 2-ranked Miami’s eight-game winning streak with a 4-2 win Friday night in the first round of play of the fifth-annual Ohio Hockey Classic in Value City Arena. The RedHawks (12-4-3; 10-2-2-1 CCHA) outshot the Golden Knights (3-10-4; 1-6-1), 42-19, for the game, but Clarkson’s power-play squad produced two goals and CU goalie Paul Karpowich had 40 saves to secure the win. The Golden Knights were victorious in their last meeting with the RedHawks, a 4-2 win in Potsdam Nov. 25, 2006.
Clarkson advances to the Ohio Hockey Classic final, set for 5:05 or 8:05 p.m. Saturday in VCA. The RedHawks, the tournament’s defending champion, will play in the consolation game.
Despite being outshot, 15-4, Clarkson jumped ahead in the opening period of the first game of the OHC. Golden Knight senior Shea Guthrie took a pass from freshman Nick Tremblay and jammed the puck low past Miami goaltender Cody Reichard 1:39 into the first stanza. Freshman Julien Cayer had the second assist. In the first, Reichard made three saves while Clarkson freshman Karpowich recorded 15 saves. Miami was 0-2 on the power play while Clarkson had no power play chances.
The RedHawks got on the board at 11:16 of the second period with a 4-on-3 power-play goal from Miami sophomore Carter Camper. Clarkson’s Karpowich saved the initial shot but Camper finished the play, sending the puck top shelf into the Golden Knight net. RedHawks Pat Cannone and Tommy Wingels were credited with the assists. Clarkson regained its lead at 13:05 on a power-play goal of its own. Freshman Julien Cayer tallied his second goal of the year to give the Golden Knights a 2-1 lead heading into final period of play. Sophomores Brandon DeFazio and Lauri Tuohimaa recorded the first and second assists, respectively. For the period, Clarkson recorded eight shots while Miami had seven. Karpowich made six saves for the Golden Knights while Reichard made seven stops in front of the RedHawks net.
Clarkson produced two goals early in the third stanza. Bryan Rufenach scored the eventual gamewinner from the right side circle 1:28 into the period, picking up a rebound from teammate Cayer. Again skating with a man-up two minutes later, DeFazio notched his first goal of the game to put the Golden Knights up, 4-1, 3:36 into the stanza. Miami cut the lead to two 7:56 into the third with the game’s fourth power-play tally. Senior Raymond Eichenlaub sent the puck into sophomore Justin Vaive who sent the puck to the back of the net from the top of the crease. Sophomore Andy Miele had the second assist for the RedHawks. Despite outshooting Clarkson, 20-7, Miami’s third period efforts were thwarted by Karpowich’s 19 stops. The freshman ended the game with 40 saves while Reichard recorded 15 saves for the RedHawks.
George Roll, Clarkson head coach
On the game
“In the first period, Miami was the better club. Our goalie won the game for us. In the second and third period we settled. Right from the start Paul (Karpowich) came out strong and when Shea (Guthrie) scored the first goal, it helped build our confidence. We’ve been behind so much and always trying to come from behind, that I really think it was a psychological thing.”
On coming back from break
“For everyone it was just good to get some time away from the rink. When you’re on a winning streak, you want to keep playing and conversely, when you’ve been down, you want some time away. I have to say, it would be easy for these guys to get down, but they came back and continued to work hard.”
On the game tomorrow
“I haven’t seen either team, so I don’t know what to think of either team. We’re going to watch them tonight and that will be fun, now that the weight is off our back. We know it will be a battle no matter who we play, but after tonight we’ll hopefully play a little looser and with more confidence.”
Shea Guthrie, senior left wing
On goaltender Paul Karpowich
“He had some big saves. It gave us energy and momentum in the first period. We knew he was back there playing hard for us. That gave us a boost to play hard for him.”
On the team’s momentum
“The first goal was our momentum. Many times when we lose or tie we get down early and it hurts our confidence. It really helped us out tonight to have the first goal.”
On returning to play after winter break
“The time away from the rink was good for the team. We haven’t won in 11 games, but we still work hard everyday. The time away from the rink made us think about what we have to do and that was important for us.”
Enrico Blasi, Miami head coach
On the game
“I thought we played well in the first. We had a few break aways but their goalie (Paul Karpowich) was big on saves. We didn’t execute in front of the net. When we had second chances, they played defense well. The times we did have point black chances their goaltender came up big.”
On preparing to play Clarkson
“We don’t look at records or NHL prospects. We play our best every night. Clarkson just played two goals better and that is the bottom line. We respect everybody and we respect what we do as well.”