DIII Flames extend winning streak to six before trip to UNCW
January 20, 2018 | Radford, Va.
Ranked 14th in this month's South Region poll, Liberty University's ACHA Division III men's hockey team started 2018 by stretching its winning streak to six games with victories at No. 16 Richmond on Friday and No. 28 Radford on Saturday.
The Flames (11-7), who started the season by winning five of their first six games before losing six in a row over a brutal 10-day stretch from Oct. 27-Nov. 5, edged the Spiders, 5-4, in a shootout at the Richmond Ice Zone before tripling up the Highlanders, 6-2.
Senior center Jonathan Klakring and freshman defenseman Trevor Foley netted Liberty's two goals in the shootout at Richmond (15-1) while junior goalie Derek Guzik saved both shootout attempts by the Spiders.
In regulation, junior forward Luca Monacelli lifted the Flames to a 4-3 lead with just over three minutes to go before Richmond answered with the equalizer 30 seconds later to force the scoreless overtime.
"It was a fun game," Liberty Head Coach Rett McGibbon said. "Against Radford, we played well in the first period, but after that, we took the foot off the gas."
Freshman forward Scott Chisholm started the scoring against the Highlanders (1-9).
"We rolled off four lines and tried to play physical hockey," McGibbon said. "We got good efforts from Klakring, who has been a solid presence for us all season, and (senior forward) Zach Mitchell, who played on first line and filled in nicely with his physical presence and scoring production."
Mitchell scored one goal each against Richmond and Radford to help the Flames pull off the road sweep.
Liberty will travel to face UNC Wilmington (12-0-1) — the team that started the Flames' six-game losing streak by sweeping them by 8-1 and 4-3 scores Oct. 27-28 at the LaHaye Ice Center — this Friday at 10 p.m. and Saturday at 4:30 p.m.
"Obviously, we need to play our best two hockey games of the year," to upset the sixth-ranked Seahawks, McGibbon said.