North Andover, MA -- Senior Steve Saviano (Reading, MA) scored four goals and added an assist to lead New Hampshire (15-7-3, 7-3-3 Hockey East) to a 9-1 win over Merrimack (8-15-3, 3-10-3 Hockey East) in Hockey East action at the J. Thom Lawler Arena.
The Wildcats scored the games first four goals in 12 minutes and 30 seconds to take control of the contest. Junior Preston Callander (Regina, SASK) opened the scoring at the 4:16 mark and exactly two minutes later New Hampshire took a 2-0 lead as Saviano scored his first of the game. Senior Mike Mounsey (Concord, NH) scored his first goal of the season to give the Wildcats a 3-0 lead at the 11:23 mark of the opening frame. New Hampshire jumped out to a 4-0 lead just 1:14 later as senior Nathan Martz (Chilliwack, BC) ended the scoring for the Wildcats. Junior Sean Collins (Reading, MA) picked up an assists on Martz’s tally, giving Collins 100 points in his career. Freshman Jordan Black (Canton, MI) scored the Warriors’ lone goal of the contest, cutting New Hampshire’s lead to 4-1 just 1:05 after Martz’s goal, beating senior Mike Ayers (Hingham, MA) with a backhand on his stick side.
The Wildcats then added three more goals in the second period and a pair in the final frame. Saviano’s second goal of the night earned him 100 points for his New Hampshire career. The Wildcats out shot the Warriors by a 36-21 margin, including 18-5 in the opening 20 minutes of action.
Ayers picked up the win in net for New Hampshire making 16 saves and saw his scoreless streak end at 125:17 after Black’s goal. Sophomore Jeff Pietrasiak (Shrewsbury, MA) relieved Ayers with 7:56 left in the final period, stopping four shots for New Hampshire. Freshman Jim Healey (Holyrood, NWFD) was tagged with the loss for Merrimack, making 22 saves over the first 40 minutes of action. Junior Casey Guenther (Boissevain, MAN) played the last period for the Warriors stopping five shots.
Merrimack returns to action on Saturday, January 24 as the Warriors host the Huskies of Northeastern in a Hockey East contest at the J. Thom Lawler Arena with the opening face-off set for 7:00pm. New Hampshire will next play on Friday, January 30 as the Wildcats travel to Orono, ME for a Hockey East tilt with the Black Bears of Maine with the opening face-off set for 7:00pm.