MINNEAPOLIS The Clarkson University mens hockey team answered its first loss of the season by defeating Mercyhurst, 5-2, in the consolation game of the Ice Breaker Invitational the University of Minnesotas Mariucci Arena on Saturday.
Clarkson (3-1 overall) opened the season with four straight games away from Cheel Arena and is now 3-0 against teams it had lost to a year ago.
Weve competed hard in all four games, Clarkson coach Casey Jones said. Were anxious to play at Cheel (7 p.m. Friday against RIT) in front of our crowd. Were looking for the fans to come out and give us a chance to build something.
Clarkson lost 4-1 to New Hampshire on Friday, but on Saturday the Golden Knights built leads of 2-0 and 4-1 before eventually winning by three goals.
I thought we played a good game, Jones said. We bounced back after the loss yesterday. I thought we played well yesterday, but didnt get much to go our way. It was a character game to bounce back and play at 4 p.m.
Sophomore Jeff DiNallo struck first for Clarkson, scoring off a pass from Minnesota native A.J. Fossen, a freshman, at 4 minutes, 43 seconds of the first period.
Freshman Perry DArisso extended Clarksons lead to 2-0 at 6:10 of the second period with assists from Jarrett Burton and Ben Sexton.
The Lakers (0-2) responded less than a minute later with a goal from Anthony Mastrodicasa.
But Clarkson struck twice in the last two minutes of the second period to build a 4-1 advantage. James Howden scored at 18:05 off assists from T.J. Moor and Sexton, and Sexton scored a power-play goal at 19:51 off passes from Burton and Paul Geiger.
Mastrodicasa scored another goal for the Lakers, this one on a power play, at 9:34 of the third period, and Simon Bessette closed out the scoring for Clarkson with an empty-net goal with 49 seconds remaining.