DURHAM, N.H. - Mike Sislo (Superior, Wis.) tallied a career-high six points on four goals and two assists, while Jerry Pollastrone (Revere, Mass., 2g, 3a) and James van Riemsdyk (Middletown, N.J., 1g, 4a) each recorded five points to propel the 15th-ranked University of New Hampshire men's ice hockey team to Thursday night's 9-4 victory against the College of the Holy Cross in non-conference action at the Whittemore Center.
UNH outscored the Crusaders 5-0 in the third period to win its third consecutive game and improve to 8-6-3. HC is 5-11-1. The Wildcats lead the all-time series 4-1-0, but the teams have met just twice (UNH 4-1 win in 1986) since the 1958 season.
The nine goals scored by the Wildcats are the most since a 9-1 win over Merrimack College on Jan. 23, 2004. That game was also the last time a player potted four goals in a single game (Steve Saviano).
The five points marked career single-game highs for Pollastrone and van Riemsdyk. Pollastrone's three assists are also a personal best, as are Sislo's four goals and the four assists for van Riemsdyk, who extended his point-scoring streak to 11 games.
Kevin Kapstad (Boxboro, Mass.) matched his career high of two assists and now has a point in five consecutive games. Danny Dries (Lake Orion, Mich.) and Thomas Fortney (Webster Grove, Mo.) were UNH's other goal scorers. Fortney's goal was his first of the season.
Matt DeGirolamo (Penilyn, Pa.) played the final 26:25 of the game and stopped all six shots he faced, including five in the third period, to earn his first career victory. Brian Foster (Pembroke, N.H.) exited the game at 13:35 of the second stanza with the score tied, 4-4; he was credited with 12 saves. HC netminder Adam Roy stopped 25 shots.
New Hampshire, which finished December a perfect 3-0-0, quickly broke the 4-4 tie in the third period with a goal 15 seconds after the opening faceoff. Blake Kessel (Verona, Wis.) played the puck into the zone for van Riemsdyk, who circled behind the net to the left side and sent the puck across the slot to an unmarked Sislo at the right post for the goal.
The 'Cats pushed the lead to 7-4 with tallies 82 seconds apart by Sislo and van Riemsdyk at 7:14 and 8:36. van Riemsdyk and Nick Krates (Palos Park, Ill.) set up Sislo's third strike of the night. Pollastrone and Phil Desimone (East Amherst, N.Y.) were credited with the assists on van Riemsdyk's power-play tally.
Dries, from Peter LeBlanc (Hamilton, Ontario) and Bobby Butler (Marlboro, Mass.) extended the advantage to 8-4 at 16:23 and Sislo capped the scoring at 18:12 with the assistance of Pollastrone and Kapstad.
UNH quickly built a 3-0 goal with three tallies in a 3 minute, 52 second span early in the first period. Pollastrone gave the Wildcats a 1-0 lead at 4:17 when, from the top of the crease, he redirected van Riemsdyk's centering pass from the right corner under the crossbar. Sislo was also credited with an assist.
Fortney tallied his first point of the season with a goal from a scrum in front of the net at 5:35 to extend the advantage to 2-0. Greg Collins (Fairport, N.Y.), with a pass across the slot, and Kapstad set up the goal.
Pollastrone potted his second goal of the night at 8:09 when his low shot from the right circle eluded the block attempt of the Crusaders' defenseman and Roy in net. Sislo netted a power-play goal at 13:01 to give the 'Cats a 4-0 lead. Pollastrone moved the puck from the right point down low to van Riemsdyk, who centered the puck to Sislo in the slot.
The Crusaders pulled within 4-1 on a Brodie Shehan power-play goal with seven seconds remaining in the first period. Ryan Driscoll won the faceoff in the left circle back to Mark Znutas, who slid a pass across the blue line and Sheahan's blast from the right point sailed into the net.
Holy Cross tallied three goals in the second period - in a span of 3:15 - to level the score, 4-4, heading into the final frame. Jordan Cyr (2g, 1a) and J.P. Martignetti (1g, 1a) struck 15 seconds apart - at 10:20 and 10:35 - to lift the visitors within 4-3. Peter Lorinser's initial redirection from the low slot sailed wide left of the cage, but Matt Celin collected the puck and centered a pass to Cyr, whose shot trickled across the goal line. Martignetti, with the assistance of Jay Sylvia and Cyr, scored when his shot from the right circle ricocheted off Foster's glove into the net.
Cyr's second goal of the night evened the score, 4-4, at 13:35. Foster stopped Silvia's initial shot from the slot, but Cyr swept in the rebound for the score. Martignetti was also credited with an assist on the play.
New Hampshire is idle until Jan. 4, 2009, when the Wildcats play at Maine (4 p.m.) The game will be broadcast live nationally on ESPNU. UNH’s next home game is Jan. 10 (7 p.m.) against UMass.