Panthers hang on for 3-2 win over X-Men

Photo credit Bryan Kennedy, STFX Athletics
Photo credit Bryan Kennedy, STFX Athletics

Antigonish, NS – The UPEI Panthers defeated the STFX X-Men 3-2 Saturday night at the Charles V. Keating Centre in AUS men's hockey action.

Special teams were the difference as four of the five goals in the game were scored on the power play.

UPEI opened the scoring 5:28 into the game as Cole Kowalski (Morden, MB) intercepted a STFX clearing attempt in their zone and made a quick pass over to Josh Currie (Pickering, ON) who beat Joseph Raaymakers (Chatham, ON) in the X net.

The X-Men had a few key scoring chances but couldn't solve Panthers netminder Jonah Capriotti (Charlottetown, PE) in the opening period as UPEI held onto the 1-0 lead after 20 minutes.

Shots favored the X-Men 13-9 in the first period.

The teams came out hard hitting in the second period. STFX had a power play opportunity midway through the period – the first for either team at that point – but couldn't connect.

The Panthers then went on their own man advantage and capitalized when Elias Cohen (Toronto, ON) grabbed the puck from the corner and passed to Marc Richard (Clinton, PE) in front of the X net who one-timed it under the pads of Raaymakers.

UPEI went back on the power play and scored their third goal of the game two minutes later as Richard scored his second of the night, tipping in a shot from Kurtis Henry (Niagara Falls, ON). Noah Sedore (Sharon, ON) picked up the second helper on the play and his second assist of the game.

It was the Panthers turn to get into penalty trouble as Kowalski was sent off for a high sticking double minor late in the period. They held off the X attack to take their 3-0 lead into second intermission.

The X-Men had a 5-on-3 advantage that carried over for 74 seconds into the third period. Matthew Philip (Ilderton, ON) tucked the puck in after Capriotti let a rebound loose after a Jacob Hudson (Antigonish, NS) shot. The goal came 38 seconds in.

Hudson then pulled the X-Men to within a goal as he pounced on a Philip rebound, also on the power play, at 4:24.

STFX pressed for the equalizer and pulled Raaymakers with 1:23 left in the game but were unable to score as the Panthers held on for the one-goal victory.

Final shots were 35-26 for the X-Men as Capriotti posted 33 saves in the Panthers net for the win.

STFX forward Philip earned first star and player of the game honours. UPEI's Richard was the second star and STFX's Hudson the third star.

The Panthers are back in action Wednesday night when they travel to Moncton for a game against the Aigles Bleus. The X-Men will host Saint Mary's on Friday, January 19th in a 7 p.m. game.


Recap courtesy Krista McKenna, STFX Athletics