DII Flames down Cincinnati, Davenport in showcase at Miami (Ohio) before falling to Sault (Ontario)
Liberty University’s ACHA Division II men’s hockey team, ranked No. 2 in the Southeast Region, won two out of three games in a weekend showcase at Miami University’s Goggin Ice Center in Oxford, Ohio.
The Flames (20-4) defeated Cincinnati, 3-1 on Friday, and Davenport, 8-1 on Saturday, before losing to Sault (Ontario) College, ranked fourth in the Central Region, 5-3 on Sunday, despite outshooting the Cougars, 47-32.
In Friday’s opener, goals by senior forward Peyton Nash and freshman forward Josh Harrell ended a scoreless tie in the second period before Nash added an insurance goal in the third.
Similarly, against Davenport, the Flames and Panthers were tied at 1 following the first period — after Trevor Granzow’s equalizer assisted by fellow sophomore forward Roman Lamoureux. Then, Liberty took complete control with four goals in the second and three more in the third.
Junior forward Josh Wagner started the four-goal, second-period flurry by finishing a feed from senior forward Tim Doe just 18 seconds after the opening faceoff. Barely a minute later, freshman defenseman Jared Matley scored off an assist from Harrell before Doe gave the Flames a 4-1 lead two minutes after that, assisted by Granzow. Nash continued the onslaught by putting away passes from sophomore defenseman Cameron Tobey and senior defenseman Charlie Wilkie.
In the third period, freshman forward Cooper Neal pushed the lead to 6-1 off an assist from senior forward Justin Barstead before Harrell scored off assists from Matley and fellow freshman defenseman Jared Meyer and Lamoureux capped the scoring with his team-high 14th goal of the season, assisted by Doe and Granzow.
Freshman goalie Lane Skon made 31 saves to improve to 7-1.
On Sunday, Sault College scored once in the first period, three times in the second — matching Liberty’s output — and once in the third, when it shut out the Flames.
Harrell tied the game at 1-1 with a power-play goal less than a minute into the second off assists from Tobey and Granzow (his team-high 32nd of the season) before Doe matched Lamoureux with his 14th goal, assisted by senior defenseman Maxx Mitchell. After Sault tied it at 2, Neal gave the Flames a brief 3-2 lead off an assist from graduate forward Josh Malin on a power play. But the Cougars knotted it back up on a shorthanded goal a minute and a half later, reclaimed the lead for good less than two minutes after that, and added another shorthanded goal in the third.
Liberty senior goalie Dakota Cyhaniuk made 27 saves in the setback.
The Flames will be back in action this weekend when they host Delaware on Friday at 2:30 p.m. and Saturday at 1:30 p.m. at the LaHaye Ice Center.