Saturday, January 26, 2008
Merrimack Blanks Canisius 4-0
Braithwaite Notches First Career Shutout
NORTH ANDOVER, MA. - Andrew Braithwaite (Kingston, Ontario) stopped 18 shots for his first career shutout as the Merrimack hockey team blanked Canisius College 4-0 Saturday night at Lawler Arena.
With the victory, the Warriors finish unbeaten (6-0-1) for the first time in non-conference play in the regular season since they joined Hockey East in 1988.
Eleven different Merrimack players picked up points as the Warriors converted twice on the power play in the second period on goals from Matt Jones (Kentwood, MI) and Fraser Allan (North Battleford, Sask.) to take a 2-0 lead.
Jones' goal, his 11th of the season, snapped a six-game scoreless streak, as Francois Ouimet (Lorraine, Quebec) and Adam Ross (Red Deer, Alberta) picked up assists. Allan blasted a shot past Griff goaltender Taylor Anderson on a two-man advantage with Grant Farrell (Calgary, Alberta) and Rob Ricci (Brampton, Ontario) notching helpers.
Freshman Kurtis Astle (Port Coquitlam, B.C.) tipped a shot from Matt Moulakelis (Hawthorne Woods, IL) into the net at 2:56 of the third for his second of the season, extending Merrimack's lead to 3-0. Playing in his first collegiate game after missing the first 22 games with a lower body injury, Moulakelis was a +1, centering the fourth line and earned his first collegiate assist.
J.C. Robitaille (Des Ruisseaux, Quebec) continued his hot hand, tallying his eighth of the season on a breakaway with 5:12 to play, firing one over the glove of Anderson. Ricci and Chris Barton (Calgary, Alberta) notched assists on the Warriors' fourth goal.
Merrimack's defense killed off all 10 power plays they faced, including two two-man advantage situations.
After not scoring four goals in any single game in 2006-07, Merrimack has scored four or more goals seven times this season, including the last three games and five of the last six. This victory, the Warriors' second straight, is the 10th of the season, equaling the most since finishing 10-20-6 in 2003-04.
Merrimack (10-11-2, 4-11-1 HEA) returns to Hockey East play next week and will visit Boston University next Friday (7 p.m.) and host Providence College Saturday (7 p.m.).