OXFORD, Ohio - Junior assistant captain Charlie Kelleher (Longmeadow, Mass.) posted one goal and two assists for three points, while junior forward Kohei Sato (Nishitokyo, Japan) and sophomore forward Jackson Pierson (Zionville, Ind.) each scored two goals as the University of New Hampshire men's hockey team defeated Miami, 6-2, on Friday night at the Steve "Coach" Cady Arena in the season opener for the Wildcats. The Wildcats start the season 1-0-0, while the RedHawks fall to 0-2-0.
UP NEXT: The Wildcats conclude the two-game series at the Steve "Coach" Cady Arena versus Miami on Saturday, Oct. 12 at 7 p.m.
Score: New Hampshire 6, Miami 2
Location: Oxford, Ohio (Steve "Coach" Cady Arena)
Date: Friday, Oct. 11, 2019
Time: 7 p.m.
HOW IT HAPPENED
- At 9:47 of the first period, Sato scored the first goal of the season for the Wildcats as he sent a one-timer to the upper stick side corner of the net off a pass from junior forward Eric MacAdams (Salem, Mass.). Junior defenseman Max Gildon (Plano, Texas) also posted an assist.
- The Wildcats then increased their lead to 2-0 just 1:06 later at 10:53 when Kelleher sent Pierson on a breakaway as he fired a shot past the glove of Ryan Larkin for the goal. Sophomore defenseman Will MacKinnon (Plymouth, Mich.) also tallied an assist on the goal.
- At 13:31, junior defenseman Benton Maass (Elk River, Minn.) blasted a slap shot from the slot to the upper glove side for a power play goal. Freshman forward Chase Stevenson (West Kelowna, British Columbia) and senior forward Liam Blackburn (Prince George, British Columbia) each recorded an assist on the goal.
- With just 18.3 seconds left in the first period, Phil Knies knocked in a loose puck from in front of the goal to cut the UNH lead to 3-1.
- UNH outshot Miami, 13-6, while the Wildcats went 1-2 on the power play and the RedHawks went 0-2.
- At 9:05 of the second period, Sato scored his second goal of the game to give the Wildcats a 4-1 advantage as he stole the puck in the UNH zone and went on a breakaway pushing the puck past the stick of Larkin.
- But just 36 seconds later, the RedHawks scored their second goal of the game as Gordie Green found the back of the net.
- With just 0.3 seconds left in the second period, Kelleher scored a power play goal sending a wrist shot to the upper stick side corner of the net as the Wildcats led 5-2 after the second period. Junior assistant captain Patrick Grasso and Gildon each posted an assist on the goal.
- UNH outshot Miami by a 12-7 margin, while the Wildcats went 1-2 on the man-advantage and the RedHawks went 0-2.
- Pierson scored his second goal of the game at 9:47 of the third period, when he sent a loose puck to the back of the net. Kelleher and sophomore defenseman Ryan Verrier (Reading, Mass.) each tallied an assist.
INSIDE THE NUMBERS
- UNH outshot Miami by a 34-20 margin.
- Junior Mike Robinson (Bedford, N.H.) made 18 saves to earn the win. Larkin made 20 saves over the first two periods, while Ben Kraws made eight in the third period.
- The Wildcats went 2-6 on the power play and the RedHawks went 0-4.
BEYOND THE BOXSCORE
- UNH is now 8-5-2 all-time versus Miami.
- The Wildcats are 51-37-3 all-time in season openers and 24-28-0 when they open on the road. Last time the Wildcats won a season opener on the road was the 4-3 win at No. 5 UMass Lowell on Oct. 6, 2017.
- The last time the Wildcats scored six or more goals during the season-opener was when they defeated AIC, 7-3, on Oct. 10, 2015.
- Kelleher posted his third career three-point game.
- Sato and Pierson each tallied their first career two-goal game.
- Verrier posted his first collegiate point with an assist.
- The assist by Stevenson was his first collegiate point.
- Maass now has two career game-winning goals.
- The last time the Wildcats scored six goals was when they defeated UConn, 6-0, on Jan. 26, 2019 at the Whittemore Center.