PROVIDENCE, R.I. -- A 38-save shutout by sophomore goaltender Jon Gillies (South Portland, Maine) helped lift the Providence College Men's Ice Hockey team to a 3-0 win over No. 11/11 Minnesota State on Saturday, Oct. 12 at Schneider Arena. The No. 14/14 Friars' improve to 2-0-0 to start the season following their weekend sweep over the Mavericks.
Despite being outshot in the first period, the Friars entered the second period in a scoreless tie with the Mavericks, largely thanks to 20 first period saves by Gillies. Only 17 seconds into the second, junior Ross Mauermann (Janesville, Wis.) grabbed the lead for the Friars as he scored what would prove to be the game winner for Friars - his second game winner in as many nights. Providence added two more goals as freshmen Anthony Florentino (West Roxbury, Mass.) and Conor MacPhee (Windham, N.H.) both tallied their first career goals.
Following the 20-save effort by Gillies, including 11 saves while the Friars were shorthanded, the Friars responded in the second period with three goals.
"Guys were clearing lanes unbelievably well in front of me," said Gillies after the game. "Our defensemen did a really good job so I could see pucks and square-up and they just made it pretty easy for me."
After Junior Shane Luke (Dauphin, Manitoba) fired a shot on goal that was stopped by Maverick goaltender Stephon Williams, Mauermann managed to collect the rebound and put the Friars ahead when he sent a backhand shot from the slot into the back of the net.
Florentino doubled the Friars lead with a 5-on-3 goal at the 10:16 mark of the first period with an unassisted goal. The freshman defenseman's first career goal was the result of a failed Maverick clearing attempt that Florentino held in at the blue line and then blasted through traffic and past Williams.
Then at 15:33 of the frame, MacPhee finished off a 2-on-1 play up the ice with sophomore Nick Saracino (St. Louis, Mo.). Saracino slid a pass to MacPhee under the Mavericks defenseman who was sliding back on the play. The perfect pass allowed MacPhee to put the puck into a wide open net to seal the win.
Gillies remained perfect in the final period of the game, making 13 saves, to earn his sixth career shutout, as he stopped all 38 shots the Mavericks sent his way. Gillies moves to second all-time in career shutouts in Friar history with six. Williams also played a strong game for the Mavericks as he stopped 35 of the 38 shots he faced.
"I thought both goaltenders played excellent tonight," said Head Coach Nate Leaman. "It was a good weekend for us and now we can see what we need to improve upon moving forward. But anytime you score eight and give up one, it is a good weekend."Special teams play was extensive as the Friars were whistled for 11 penalties (22 minutes) and the Mavericks were called for 14 (58 minutes), including two game misconducts. All told, Providence went 1-for-10 with the man advantage, while Minnesota State finished 0-for-10 on the power play.
The Friars return to the ice next Saturday, Oct. 19 for a game against American International, a non-conference opponent. The game is set to start at 7:00 p.m. at Schneider Arena.
Notes: The Friars are now 4-0-0 vs. Minnesota State at home ... Conor MacPhee scored his first career goal in his second game played ... Anthony Florentino scored his first career goal in his Friar debut ... Ross Mauermann now has a two-game goal scoring streak streak ... Shane Luke had an assist in both win this weekend ... Jon Gillies registered his sixth career shutout, moving into sole possession of second place all-time in Friar history for career shutouts, behind only Tyler Sims' seven ... The only time Gillies had more saves in a shutout was 1/12/2013 when he made 44 saves in a 2-0 win over Massachusetts.