PROVIDENCE, R.I. - The Providence College men's hockey team was defeated by No. 8/7 New Hampshire, 5-2, Friday night in a Hockey East game played at Schneider Arena. Paul Thompson scored twice and added one assist, while Mike Sislo had one goal and two assists to lead the way for UNH.
After a scoreless first period, UNH (14-5-4, 12-2-2) and Providence (7-11-5, 3-9-4) combined for six goals in the second period as the Wildcats took a 4-2 lead into the third period. Following a Friar power play, Phil DeSimone played a long pass to Thompson who skated in on a breakaway before lifting a wrist shot past PC junior goalie Justin Gates (Cranston, R.I.) at 4:02. The Friars responded 2:57 later when junior Andy Balysky (Randolph, N.H.) netted his fourth goal of the season. Sophomore Chris Rooney (Canton, Mass.) forced a turnover in the UNH end and Balysky was the beneficiary as he rifled a shot from the slot past UNH goalie Matt DiGirolamo to even the score at 1-1.
Thompson gave the Wildcats the lead for good 41 seconds later with his second goal of the night and 20th of the season. Nick Sorkin scored at 11:19 and Sislo added another goal at 18:22 to increase UNH's lead to 4-1. It marked Sislo's 100th career point. With 18 seconds remaining in the period, the Friars cut the lead to 4-2 on a goal by freshman Derek Army (North Kingstown, R.I.). Junior Matt Bergland (Faribault, Minn.) made a rush down the left wing and slid the puck to Army whose shot from the slot found the back of the net. It marked Army's fifth goal of the season.
In the third period, the Friars outshot the Wildcats, 13-7, but could not get any closer as Dalton Speelman added an empty-net goal to seal the win. PC finished with a 37-27 advantage in shots as DiGirolamo had 35 saves. Gates totaled 22 stops for the Friars.
The two teams will complete the weekend home-and-home series on Saturday, January 29 at 7:00 p.m. at the Whittemore Center in Durham, N.H.).