BY: JOSH BROWN
Despite goals from Zach Aston-Reese and Kevin Roy, the #16 Northeastern Huskies started off the season on a sour note loosing to the Acadia Axemen 3-2 in the team’s only preseason game.
Northeastern scored the only goal of the first period on a Zach Aston-Reese penalty shot at 10:05 in the period. Aston-Reese, who had a breakaway was brought down by Stephen Woodworth from behind to earn the penalty shot. He beat Acadia goalie Brandon Glover 5-hole to give the Huskies the lead.
“I kind of wanted Kevin [Roy] to take it,” Aston-Reese joked. “I saw his legs open up so I just wanted to get it out as quick as possible.”
Acadia would come out with all the offensive momentum in the second period. Liam Heelis beat Huskies goalie Clay Witt over the left shoulder to tie the game at one 6:04 into the period. Witt would leave the game 5 minutes later finishing the evening with 9 saves on 10 shots.
The Axemen would take the lead with just 53 seconds remaining in the period when Boston Leier redirected a Matthew Pufahl shot by the glove of Derick Roy. The teams combined for 17 penalty minutes in the second frame.
Junior Kevin Roy would score the equalizer 8:19 into the third period on a power play goal assisted by Colton Saucerman and newcomer Garret Cockerill. Roy cleaned up a deflected Saucerman pass and shot it right over the glove of Brandon Glover for the score.
Unfortunately for the Huskies just 1:31 later the Axeman would take the lead for good when Alex Beaton beat Derick Roy blocker side to take the 3-2 lead. Despite a couple of power plays late in the game and an open net opportunity for Kevin Roy, which landed just wide, the Huskies could not find the back of the net and went home with a loss.
Derick Roy ended the day saving 13 of the 15 shots he faced after taking over for Witt. The Huskies were tacked with 19 penalty minutes on the afternoon.
“It was a fresh start, I just wanted to prove to everyone I was here to play as hard as I can,” said sophomore transfer Brendan Collier after his first action as a Husky. “I’m five minutes down the road from my old school [Boston University], and I’m five minutes still from my house. I’ve played in this building when I was in middle school, elementary school….I love playing here.”
Despite the loss Northeastern head coach Jim Madigan was happy with the focus his team showed Sunday afternoon.
“I was pleased with the effort, you can never sacrifice effort,” Madigan said. “I thought we got a little bit to loopy at times. We have a little more skill this year.”
The Huskies will begin the regular season Saturday night against Vermont, a game Madigan perceives as a big test early on for Northeastern.
“We know on Saturday with Vermont the way they play it’s up tempo, it’s fast paced, the tempo will be a lot faster,” Madigan said.
That game can be heard on WRBB with pregame beginning at 6:45 from Matthews Arena.