CANTON Two of the top five scorers in the nation played in Wednesday nights ECAC Hockey game at Appleton Arena.
But Clarkson University junior Will Frederick, with just two goals this season, wound up recording the top statistical game, matching his season total and added an assist as the Golden Knights beat the rival St. Lawrence University Saints 4-1 before a sellout crowd of 2,622.
SLUs Kyle Flanagan, a Canton native, leads the nation in scoring and teammate Greg Carey is tied for fifth.
Frederick, who is more of a physical forward, doubled the two goals he had this season by the end of the opening period, scoring twice in the first period for the Golden Knights (3-7-5 overall, 3-3-1 conference) to give Clarkson a lead it would never relinquish.
It was a good start for our team, that was the biggest thing, Frederick said. We were trying to come out of the gate on the road and get the upper hand. Points on the road are hard to come by.
Fredericks first goal came at 6 minutes, 1 second of the opening period on a play where he just kept whacking at the puck until it squeezed past Saints goalie Matt Weninger. His second goal came at 15:54 when he redirected a slap shot from defenseman Andrew Himelson.
I just kind of threw it to the net, followed the puck, and put in the rebound, Frederick said of his opening goal. You kind of silence the crowd a little bit. It was rocking before the game there.
After Wednesdays game, Frederick improved his career statistics against the Saints to four goals and two assists in six games.
We told Freddy he should play all his games against St. Lawrence, because hed have quite the goal-per-game ratio, Clarkson coach Casey Jones said. Freddys a big boy (6-foot-3, 218 pounds), and hes physical and he took pucks to the net. Thats what a big man should do. He brought the puck hard to the net and he got rewarded for it.
LEWIS SHINES IN DEBUT
Clarkson freshman goalie Greg Lewis has experienced an up-and-down first half of the season, but the 21-year-old likely gave some St. Lawrence fans bad memories of former Clarkson goalie Paul Karpowich on Wednesday as they saw another Clarkson goalie wearing No. 33 denying chances.
Lewis, a native of Mars, Pa., stopped 34 of 35 shots in his debut game in the Clarkson/SLU rivalry, a .971 save percentage. One of his saves was on a breakaway by Flanagan, the nations leading scorer, during a second-period power play.
I was aware of him, Lewis said. (The shot) just kind of hit me I guess.
When Lewis has been able to stop at least 90 percent of the shots he faces, hes been successful this season, with a 3-1-2 record in those games. In the other games hes gone 0-5-2.
I thought he was real good tonight, Jones said. He showed a lot of composure.
SLU had only eight shots against Lewis in the first period, but came out inspired at the start of the second and peppered the net and finished with 27 shots in the final two periods.
We figured they would come out hard in the second, Lewis said. We did a good job keeping all the shots to the outside and making it hard on them in the (defensive) zone.
Heading into Wednesdays game it looked like Clarkson would be in trouble if SLU received a lot of power-play chances. The Golden Knights ranked last in the nation in the penalty kill and SLUs power-play ranked ninth.
But Clarkson killed five of six penalties Wednesday, and SLU did not score until its second-to-last chance.
We just tried to take time and space away from them on the kill, Himelson said. We focused on our keys and blocking shots.
Said Jones, We were getting a little bit concerned that we werent being aggressive enough and we went back to the fundamentals the last couple days. We were giving them way too much zone time. When teams are in your zone thats when you get scoring chances.
ODDS AND ENDS
Clarkson and SLU will meet in a nonconference game Saturday night at 7:30 in Lake Placid. ... Clarkson has now won five straight ECAC Hockey games against the Saints and is 3-0-2 in its last five games in Appleton Arena. ... Clarkson sophomore Joe Zarbo scored a goal in the second period, giving him a goal in each of the last four games hes played. ... Wednesdays loss was the first time this season the Saints have lost two straight games, and it also kept SLU from winning its 1,000th career game.