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Clarkson Sweeps SLU

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CANTON — Credit Clarkson University with another inspired comeback against archrival St. Lawrence University.

In rallying for a 4-3 victory on Saturday night, the Knights continued their recent dominance over the Saints.

Clarkson erased an early two-goal deficit and Ben Zarbo scored the game-winning goal early in the third period to storm past St. Lawrence in the two rivals latest ECAC Hockey clash at Appleton Arena.

“Where there’s a will, there’s a way,” Zarbo said of Clarkson’s rally.

The Golden Knights (12-3-1, 6-2-0), ranked 10th in the nation, not only completed a sweep of a rare home-and-home series with the Saints (8-8-2, 2-4-2), they also extended their unbeaten streak against St. Lawrence in league play to eight games (7-0-1).

Clarkson’s senior class has also won all four games against St. Lawrence in Canton.

“It’s awesome, one of the goal we set for ourselves in our freshman year was to have success against them,” Clarkson senior captain Ben Sexton said. “I thought we did a good job tonight.”

Conversely, the Saints suffered another setback to the Golden Knights a night after Clarkson rallied for a 5-4 triumph in Potsdam.

“It’s almost like a dagger,” St. Lawrence senior Pat Raley said.

Clarkson has also fared 9-1-1 in its past 11 games against the Saints.

Freshman goalie Steve Perry stopped all 14 shots over the final 40 minutes to earn the win for the Golden Knights after replacing starter Greg Lewis.

“We’ve been in a lot of close games, so I think we’re comfortable in these situations,” Clarkson coach Casey Jones said. “ ... It wasn’t easy, but we persevered — we blocked shots when we needed to and we sacrificed to get those two points.”

Trailing 3-2 after the opening period, Clarkson drew even on Jeff DiNallo’s rebound goal 3 minutes, 4 seconds into the second just after St. Lawrence goalie Matt Weninger knocked away Allan McPherson’s backhand bid.

Zarbo then followed with the deciding goal 2:33 into the third period with a long-range blast over Weninger.

“We’re a resilient team right now,” Sexton said. “We got down early in the game, and we showed a lot of character to come back.”

The Golden Knights also executed timely penalty killing, particularly in overcoming a five-minute major penalty late in the third.

“That was the major turning point of the game — their penalty killing was real good,” St. Lawrence coach Greg Carvel said. “ ... I give Clarkson a lot of credit, they adjusted and their PK was very aggressive tonight.”

In all, the Saints was 2-for-8 on the power play, but were held scoreless on four opportunities over the last two periods.

“If you look at their statistics, they’re phenomenal on the power play,” Jones said of St. Lawrence. “They had their chances and I thought we made some big saves, I thought Steve came in and held down the fort for us.”

Zarbo added: “It definitely got interesting. We didn’t want to put ourselves in that position, but we did a good job killing off those penalties.”

Freshman Matt Carey scored a pair of goals for the second straight night for the Saints, and Greg Carey contributed a goal and two assists.

On Saturday, both teams again got off to flying starts on the power play.

After Greg Carey banged in a rebound of an Eric Sweetman drive from the deep left point only 33 seconds into the game, Matt Carey one-timed a cross-ice pass from Greg Carey for a power-play goal and a 2-0 St. Lawrence advantage at 1:59.

Clarkson followed by converting on their first two power-plays for the second consecutive night.

First, defenseman Sam Labrecque fired a long rebound past Weninger at 5:34 and Sexton closed in and scored on a rebound at 10:30 to tie the game at 2-2.

Then with Clarkson’s T.J. Moor off with a five-minute major and game misconduct for contact to the head, the Careys connected again as Greg Carey took an initial shot and Matt Carey was there to fire in the rebound with 10 seconds left in the penalty for a 3-2 Saints lead.

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