MHKY: Penn State Peppers Canisius with Plethora of Shots in Way to Victory
UNIVERISTY PARK, Pa. - Friday night marked the beginning of a 10-game home stand for the Nittany Lions in the run up to Big Ten play. Coming off of a victory of then No. 3 Notre Dame, Penn State returned home with plenty of momentum. Penn State head coach Guy Gadowsky was wary, however, of a post-upset letdown.
“We absolutely transferred that to the captains. I think what really helped was the lesson against St. Lawrence where we didn’t come out well at all. I’m pretty sure that was mentioned in the locker room by the leaders.
Canisius was coming off of a weekend at Robert Morris in which they went 1-0-1 to open up their conference slate.
Brandon Biro tallied his first collegiate goal to put the Lions in front on the power play at 8:06 of the first period. The Lions being on the power play became a trend as they finished the period with five power plays.
Vince Pedrie doubled the lead with only three seconds remaining in the period also on the power play. Penn State led the period in shots 31-5. Head Coach Guy Gadowsky spoke to the importance of Pedrie’s goal in his post-game press conference.
“Vince Pedrie’s power play goal at the end of the period was huge, because we were getting a lot of shots, but not a lot of goals. I thought that was a really big goal.”
At the conclusion of an early second period power play, Chase Berger capitalized on a two-on-one to push the Nittany Lions ahead 3-0. The Golden Griffins then got one back with a minute remaining in the period as Dylan McLaughlin scored on a shot through traffic.
Penn State was largely in control during the period, at one point having 16 shots to zero. But the late goal had a chance of changing the momentum as teams headed back to the ice for the start of the third period.
Canisius started the third strong, playing with an increased physicality. This clearly affected the Lions who had trouble establishing possession of the puck in the attacking zone. The physical play continued as Trevor Hamilton committed a major charging penalty, giving the Golden Griffins a five-minute-long power play with 11 minutes to go in the third period.
The Lions killed off the penalty and then headed onto their seventh power play of the game with 6:34 remaining in regulation. It would, however, be quickly negated by a penalty on Andrew Sturtz, providing fans with the first and only stint of four-on-four play they would see that night.
Penn State committed another penalty resulting in a brief five-on-three play for Canisius. With only four minutes remaining, this would be the best chance of the game for the Golden Griffins to close the gap. Canisius once again failed to capitalize, ultimately dooming them.
With two minutes remaining, captain David Goodwin set up freshman Denis Smirnov for an empty net goal, concluding the night’s scoring at 4-1. The shots would finish at 65-22, two off of the program record.
Penn State is back in action this Saturday at 7 when the squad takes on Canisius again to finish the weekend series.
Zach Green is a junior majoring in broadcast journalism. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.