BOSTON, Mass. - Northeastern scored a season-high four goals, led by a goal and two assists by Randy Guzior, but the Huskies couldn't stop the high-powered New Hampshire offense and took a 7-4 loss to the No. 4 Wildcats on Friday night at Matthews Arena. Northeastern freshman Wade MacLeod scored his first career goal and Dennis McCauley and Chad Costello also scored for the Huskies.
New Hampshire got goals from seven different skaters and was in points by senior Matt Fornataro and freshman James vanRiemsdyk, who had a goal and two assists each. Northeastern fell to 1-4-0 overall and 1-3-0 in Hockey East while New Hampshire improved to 4-0-0 and 2-0-0.
New Hampshire's Brad Flaishans scored the first goal of the game just 2:53 into the action and teammate Paul Thompson scored at 17:04 in the first period to get the Wildcats out to a 2-0 lead.
McCauley scored to get the Huskies on the board before the first period was over. As New Hampshire worked the puck in the Huskies' zone, Ryan Ginand disrupted the play and Guzior slid the puck ahead to a wide open McCauley. He broke away and shot it from the right circle, squirting one past New Hampshire goalie Kevin Regan at 18:05.
Northeastern came back to tie it at 2-2 when Guzior scored one of his own. He got assists from McCauley and Greg Costa on the score at 11:09 in the second period.
The Huskies had their chances to get a lead after Guzior's goal as three New Hampshire players took penalties, giving Northeastern a pair of 5-on-3 power plays, but NU couldn't get on the board. The game began to get away from the Huskies after Guzior's goal, as New Hampshire scored three unanswered goals to close out the second period.
With Louis Liotti in the penalty box for tripping, UNH senior Mike Radja scored a power play goal with help from Fornataro and vanRiemsdyk at 13:00 in the second. Just 42 seconds later, Jerry Pollastrone scored to make it 4-2 and Jamie Fritsch added a goal at 18:33 to make it 5-3 in favor of the Wildcats at the second intermission.
Northeastern replaced goalie Brad Thiessen with freshman Mike Binnington to start the third period. It was Binnington's first action of the season. Fornataro scored at 5:32 in the third period with assists from Radja and vanRiemsdyk to nearly put the game out of reach for the Huskies. However, NU came back with a pair of goals to make it interesting.
MacLeod's first collegiate goal came on a power play at 13:26 in the third period. Denis Chisholm passed the puck up from the Huskies' goal line to Joe Vitale. Vitale fed an open MacLeod from behind the net to make it 6-3.
Less than a minute later, Costello scored to make it 6-4. David Strathman took a shot from the slot that Regan saved. Guzior batted at it and his rebound went to Costello, who potted it for his first goal of the season at 14:08.
The Huskies put on the full-court press after head coach Greg Cronin called a timeout at 17:30 in the third. The Huskies pulled Binnington with 43 seconds to go but couldn't get another goal on the board. vanRiemsdyk put in an empty-netter with less than a second to go to make the final 7-4.
In his first collegiate game, Binnington stopped 13 of the 14 shots he faced. Thiessen made 17 stops on 22 shots in 40 minutes of play. Regan was solid in the highly offensive game, making 33 saves for the win.
Northeastern and New Hampshire rematch on Saturday night at the Whittemore Center at 7 p.m. The game will be broadcast on 890 ESPN Boston and WRBB Radio, will be televised on NHPTV and will have live audio and video on UNHwildcats.TV.