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by Joe Ray / Buffalo Sabres

CANISIUS GOLDEN GRIFFINS (4-5-3 overall, 3-3-2 Atlantic Hockey)

RIT TIGERS (3-6-2 overall, 2-4-2 Atlantic Hockey)

The Golden Griffins and Tigers clashed in two games at HARBORCENTER in a battle of upstate opponents. The two sides skated to a 3-3 tie on Friday night as RIT rode the scoring prowess of Atlantic Hockey Player of the Week Matt Garbowsky, who had all three goals for the Tigers. After RIT tightened up the defense for Saturday’s game, their 3-0 win extended Canisius’ winless streak to six games while ending their own six-game winless streak.

** Garbowsky’s hat trick was the seventh in RIT’s 10-year D-I history ... Garbowsky now has a point in 10 of 11 games this season and is riding a nine-game point-scoring streak with nine goals and five assists during that span. He also leads the nation with 185 face-off wins. Overall, Garbowsky is tied for the D-I lead with nine goals and tied for sixth with 15 points. **

The scoring took a while to heat up Friday before Cody Freeman struck for Canisius with under two minutes to play in the first period. RIT retaliated quickly in the next stanza, as Garbowsky scored twice in a span of 2:31 to open the second.

Canisius regained the momentum quickly as Braeden Rigney scored the tying goal with assists from Doug Beck and Chris Rumble at the 6:54 mark of the second. Rumble gave Canisius a 3-2 lead with a power-play tally just over four minutes into the third.

As Canisius closed out the third period, RIT stole the win from their grasps. Garbowsky scored with just 2:52 to play to complete the hat trick and send the game to overtime, where neither team could find the back of the net. RIT thoroughly outshot Canisius in the tie, but Keegan Asmundson stood strong with 37 saves for the Griffs. Jordan Ruby started for the Tigers and collected 22 saves.

Canisius had even more trouble getting shots on Ruby when they met on Saturday. The senior goaltender made 19 saves for the Tigers in the 3-0 shutout victory at HARBORCENTER. Ruby stopped 41-of-44 shots in the 1-0-1 weekend for the Tigers, earning Atlantic Hockey Goaltender of the Week honors. Ruby is now 2-2-2 this season with a 2.29 GAA and .916 save%.

Neither side could break through for the entire first half of the game, as Asmundson and Ruby matched each other’s perfect play. At the 11:22 mark of the second period, it was Garbowsky who broke the scoreless tie with the eventual game-winning goal, his fourth goal of the weekend.

RIT stretched their lead with two more third-period goals while outshooting Canisius 11-5 in the final period. Danny Smith scored his second goal of the season just over a minute into the third period. In the closing minutes, Garbowsky and Alexander Kuqali set up Brad McGowan for the insurance goal that gave RIT their first win since October 24.

The Griffs have not won a home game since the October 10 season opener at First Niagara Center against Western Michigan. They have three more chances to impress the home crowd in November hosting conference opponents Mercyhurst and Air Force.

Likewise, the Tigers have not won at the Gene Polisseni Center since opening night against St. Lawrence. They now return home to host Sacred Heart before traveling to Yale the following weekend.

Upcoming Games (Canisius)

Upcoming Games (RIT)

  • Friday, November 21 vs. Sacred Heart (7:05 p.m., Gene Polisseni Center)
  • Saturday, November 22 vs. Sacred Heart (7:05 p.m, Gene Polisseni Center)
  • Saturday, November 29 @ Yale (7 p.m.)

NIAGARA PURPLE EAGLES (1-9-0 overall, 1-5-0 Atlantic Hockey)

Niagara had the weekend off after picking up a bit of momentum with their first win of the season at Bentley. With an injury-riddled roster now just about back to full health, the Purple Eagles prepare for a series with the Army Black Knights before getting the Thanksgiving weekend off.

Upcoming Games

  • Friday, November 21 vs. Army (7 p.m., Dwyer Arena)
  • Saturday, November 22 vs. Army (7 p.m., Dwyer Arena)

BUFFALO STATE BENGALS (1-3-2 overall, 1-3-2 SUNYAC)

The Bengals’ seven-game road stretch got off to a rocky start this past weekend, as Buffalo State suffered two tough losses in Plattsburgh and Potsdam.

On Friday, Buffalo State dropped a 6-1 contest with the Plattsburgh Cardinals, who entered the weekend ranked fifth in NCAA Division III hockey.

Plattsburgh opened the contest with two goals in the opening 10 minutes, forcing Buffalo State to replace starting goaltender Mike Delavergne with freshman Ian Sylves. Plattsburgh would up their lead to 5-0 before Jake Rosen scored Buffalo State’s only goal at 11:32 of the second period.

Sylves made 28 saves on 32 shots over 48:53 of action in his first appearance for the Bengals.

Buffalo State fared much better against the Potsdam Bears on Saturday, but fell short in a 5-2 defeat. Down 2-0 five minutes into the second period, Scott Roy cut the deficit in half with his first goal of the season for Buffalo State.

Buffalo State was able to tie the game in the third period courtesy of a quick goal from Jason Zaleski. The tie did not last long, as Potsdam broke through with two goals in the next six minutes, adding an empty-net goal with 22 seconds to play for insurance. Sylves was stellar in net for the Bengals, making 44 saves.

After playing in Fredonia on Friday, the Bengals will travel to De Pere, Wis., to face the top-ranked St. Norbert College Green Knights on Thanksgiving weekend.

Upcoming Games

  • Friday, November 21 @ Fredonia (7 p.m.)
  • Friday, November 28 @ St. Norbert (7 p.m.)
  • Saturday, November 29 @ St. Norbert (7 p.m.)
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