DII Flames demoralize Demon Deacons before CFAW crowd
September 29, 2017 | Lynchburg, Va.
Playing in front of a College For A Weekend (CFAW) crowd, Liberty University's ACHA Division II men's hockey team had a motivational advantage in a 7-0 shutout of Wake Forest, Friday night at the LaHaye Ice Center.
After cutting into the right crease, Liberty's Marshal King started the scoring with 10:21 left in the first period by one-timing a finish of a beautiful crossing feed from fellow senior forward Paul Lamoureux from the left corner.
Then, with 5:54 left in the period, Lamoureux sent short pass to sophomore forward Jamie Crane whose shot from inside the right circle was kick saved by Wake Forest goalie Corey Colangelo before sophomore forward Andy Clarke tapped in the loose puck left out in front for a 2-0 lead.
At the 3:31 mark, senior forward Robert Ward danced through defenders as he skated through the right circle before finishing with a wrist shot into the upper netting. The Flames extended their advantage to 4-0 with 45 seconds left in the opening period when freshman left wing Blake Flanders skated the puck behind the cage and sent a pass to freshman forward Michael Niederer out front. Niederer's shot was blocked by Colangelo but Flanders was in excellent position to lift a short-range putback top shelf for his first goal as a Flame.
"The sky's the limit for him and that line," Liberty first-year Head Coach Ben Hughes said. "That line has produced a lot of offense for us and they've been pretty dynamic so we've been pleased with them."
The Flames capitalized on a power play with 16:54 left in the second period, after Ward took an illegal check to the back, when Lamoureux capped an odd-man rush with a wrist shot from in the left circle into the top right corner of the net.
With Ward in the penalty box, the Flames increased their lead to 6-0 with a shorthanded goal with 4:12 remaining in regulation when sophomore defenseman Jackson Roy sent a cross-ice pass to freshman defenseman Kyle Martin, who ripped a wrist shot from the top of the right circle past Colangelo.
Then, with 36 seconds to go, Ward launched a wrist shot from the top of the left circle through a screen by Clarke, stationed in front, and through Colangelo's five-hole for the final score.
The Flames improved to 2-0 while the Demon Deacons slipped to 1-3-1. Junior goalie Jarrett Epp got the start in net and made 11 saves for the shutout, stopping an early breakaway opportunity that would have given Wake Forest the lead.
Liberty will embark on its first road trip of the fall over Homecoming Weekend, Oct. 13-14 at Louisville.
"We've left off at a good spot and have continued to get a little better in some areas that we wanted to improve in from last week," Hughes said. "We'll have plenty of practice time (over the next two weeks), plenty of time to watch video, too, so the guys can keep learning and getting better."