BOSTON - Freshman forward Thomas Fortney (Webster Groves, Mo.) scored his first two collegiate goals, including the game-winner with 14:46 in the final period to guide the No. 12 ranked University of New Hampshire men's hockey team on Friday night in Hockey East action against Northeastern University, 6-4 in front of 3,628 fans at Matthews Arena.
With the win, the 'Cats even their record to 3-3-1 on the season and 2-1-0 in Hockey East play, while NU drops to 0-5-1 and 0-2-1 in conference action. Fortney gave UNH a 5-4 lead with a scramble at the Huskies netfront to put the game away for the 'Cats. Freshman Jerry Pollastrone (Revere, Mass.) also tallied his first collegiate goal as a Wildcat to provide UNH a two-game cushion at the 7:24 mark of the third stanza.
"It was a good hockey game, Northeastern played well, we jumped out and they took it away from us in the second period," said UNH coach Dick Umile. "We gave up three and so they battled back. The guys came out a played a solid third period to get a solid win. It was a good road win for us. I thought the Fortney kid did a good job tonight. That line was effective and we had some balance in our line-up. Winnik's line also played well tonight."
Junior forward Brett Hemingway (Surrey, B.C.) put UNH up 4-3 to start the third period scoring just 29 seconds into the period with his team-leading sixth goal of the year, while NU added a goal by Joe Vitale to tie the game 4-4 at 2:38 of the final session. Junior forward Daniel Winnik (Mississauga, Ontario) notted the game at 3-3 with 1:21 remaining in the second period. Hemingway and junior forward Jacob Micflikier (Winnipeg, Manitoba) assisted on Winnik's fourth goal of the season. Winnik ended the night with three points (1g, 2a).
The Huskies scored the first three goals of the second session to take the lead on a hat trick by freshman forward Ryan Ginand with scores at 3:56, 5:34 and 16:30, all in the second frame.
Fortney posted his first collegiate goal for the Wildcats at 17:53 of the opening period. Junior forward Josh Ciocco (Atco, N.J.) carried the puck up the ice and dished the puck to Fortney in the slot and his wrister beat NU goalie Doug Jewer glove side. Ciocco notched two assist in the win, while Micflikier tallied two helpers.
Senior captain Brian Yandle (Milton, Mass.) opened the game scoring with a power-play goal at 10:46 in the first period on a slapshot from the left point to put UNH on the scoreboard, 1-0. Winnik fed the puck to Yandle through the slot coming off the right half board. Sophomore Craig Switzer (Peachland, B.C.) earned a secondary assist on Yandle's first goal of the season.
Senior goaltender Jeff Pietrasiak (Shrewsbury, Mass.) posted 39 saves in the victory, which was five short of a career-high, including 16 saves in the second period. Jewer stopped 34 shots for NU, including 12 in the opening period. UNH registered one power play goal on eight chances, while the Huskies were 3 of 8 with a man up. NU had two 5x3 plays in the game, scoring on one of them.
The Wildcats are 11-0-2 in the last 13 meetings against Northeastern.
New Hampshire returns to action on Saturday, Nov. 5 against the Huskies. Game time at the Whittemore Center in Durham is 7 p.m.