Neufeld's 100th Lifts Siena Over Providence
from press release
PROVIDENCE, R.I. - Bryan Neufeld picked the
perfect time to score his 100th career goal. The junior attack
found the back of the net with just 20 seconds remaining in
tallying the winning goal as the Saints survived Providence 9-8
Saturday afternoon in Rhode Island.
Neufeld's score, his MAAC-leading fifth game-winning goal of the season, capped a furious fourth period finish in which the teams' combined to score 10 goals. Twice in the final period Siena (7-2) blew two-goal leads before ultimately prevailing for their sixth straight win.
The Saints harbored a 4-3 lead entering the final period before both teams' offenses erupted. Providence's (2-5) Jake Nolan garnered the equalizer with 13:28 remaining to bring the Friars all the way back from a 4-0 halftime deficit.
Siena would respond by taking its first of a pair of two-goal fourth period leads following scores from Neufeld and John Rogener which put the Saints on top 6-4 with 7:39 remaining. But the Friars battled back to tie things at 6-6 with a pair of goals over the next 2:28.
In a see-saw affair at the end, the Saints made the next move, once again scoring twice quickly on goals from Chris D'Alberti and Dan Lawson in a 21-second span to seemingly put things away as Siena took an 8-6 lead with 4:23 remaining.
But pesky Providence made one final push, posting their third comeback of the game from multiple goals down. Bryan Annecchino scored with 2:21 left and Evan Helda netted the game-tying goal with just 1:18 remaining as the Friars had yet another life.
With the game looking like it might be headed to overtime, Neufeld played the hero to make sure it didn't. After Zach Triner won the key faceoff following Helda's goal, the Saints held for the final shot. Neufeld made his run and beat Friars' goalie Jake Goodelman as the Saints finally delivered the knockout punch.
Triner, who was impressive once again in the faceoff X, won 13 of 20 draws including the final one following Neufeld's goal allowing the Saints to run out the clock.
Neufeld, who finished with a hat trick, becomes just the eighth player in program history to reach 100 career goals. Additionally, Neufeld extended the nation's longest active scoring streak to 44 straight games with his second straight three-plus goal performance and 19th in his brilliant career.
D'Alberti finished with two goals and Danny Martinsen added a goal and two assists for the Saints which have now won four in a row over their former conference rival after dropping 21 of the first 24 meetings.
Tom Morr added another solid game in net, posting nine saves while picking up a career-high nine groundballs for Siena which finishes the month of March a perfect 6-0. During the Saints' six game winning streak, Morr has been a stalwart between the pipes posting a solid 6.76 goals against average while saving 63.6% of the shots he has faced.
The Saints look to extend their winning streak into April when they return to action and MAAC competition Saturday against Detroit. Faceoff is set for 1 p.m. from Siena Turf Field.