Victory on ice

Flames earn first home win of 2017

The Liberty University men’s hockey team defeated Oakland (MI) University 6-3 at the LaHaye Ice Center Jan. 20.

Liberty got on the board first by scoring two goals before the first five minutes
were finished.

Sophomore forward Owen Harris scored the first goal in the third minute during a power play with assistance from freshman forward Quinn Ryan.

Harris netted the goal from deep in the left circle off the fast break pass from Thompson.

The second goal was scored with even lineups at the fourth minute by freshman forward Andy Clarke.

skater — Freshman defenseman Matt Cruickshank moved the puck down the ice.  Photo Credit: Caroline Sellers

SKATER — Freshman defenseman Matt Cruickshank moved the puck down the ice.
Photo Credit: Caroline Sellers

He had assistance by sophomore forward Kyle Crane and junior defenseman Ben Hughes.

Just 35 seconds after the Flames first goal, Clarke scored out front from a wrist shot.

“We had a great start tonight, and it propelled us the rest of the game,” Flames Head Coach Kirk Handy said.

Clarke also scored the third goal in the ninth minute unassisted while short-handed.

After a steal deep on the opponent’s end of the ice, Clarke was able to score on Oakland freshman goalie Ian Dvorak with a wraparound blast from behind the net.

Oakland scored its first goal in the 13th minute during their power play, ending the first period with a score of 3-1.

Douglas Andrews scored on a power play for the Grizzlies off of a screen from in front of the goal.

Liberty’s fourth goal was scored in the third minute of the second period during a power play by freshman center Cody Clarke with assistance from freshman forward Josh Hamilton and senior forward Colt Steele.

“I expected a lot more dirty (play), but both teams showed quite a bit of character and held their heads,” Clarke said.

“It did not go as I expected. We normally don’t have good starts, but today we did.”

Oakland scored its second goal in the fifth minute of the second period with even players on the ice.

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Andrews scored his second goal of the game off a put back shot from the right side.

“Some guys kind of got down on themselves, but we were able to rally around them and have good teamwork,” Clarke said.

Liberty’s fifth goal was scored in the 10th minute of the second period by sophomore defender Zane Schartz from deep in the left circle with assistance from freshman defender Matt Cruickshank.

Oakland then came back to score a third time in the 17th minute of the second period on another power play.

Andrews recorded his hat trick for the Grizzlies, shooting the puck into the right post from the left circle.

The second period ended with a score of 5-3.

“I was not expecting their power play to be that strong,” Clarke said.

“We had trouble staying in the lanes and blocking shots, but we picked that up in the third period and had some good blocks.”

Liberty scored its final goal in the third period in the 16th minute, marking the final score at 6-3.

The goal was scored by sophomore forward Zechariah Roberts with assistance by sophomore forward Zak Hayes and freshman forward Josh Bergen.

Roberts scored a wraparound goal, bouncing the puck off Dvorak for the final score of the game.

The Flames will travel to play the University of Delaware in two games this weekend.

The puck drops first Friday, Jan. 27 at 9:15 p.m. and again Saturday at 5:15 p.m.

DEUTSCH is a sports reporter.

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