Jan. 21, 2012
WEST POINT, N.Y. - Jason Fabian scored two goals and Air Force never trailed in a 4-2 win over Army in an Atlantic Hockey Association game Saturday, Jan. 21, at a sold out Tate Rink in West Point, N.Y. The win ended a six-game winless skid for the Falcons and was the first win at Army since 2004.
Air Force, 11-7-5 overall and 9-4-4 in the AHA, opened the scoring at the 3:23 mark of the first period. Tim Kirby made a long outlet pass to John Kruse skating down the left side and the junior netted his second of the weekend and ninth of the season. Air Force dominated the first period with an 11-3 shot advantage and a 9-3 faceoff advantage.
Midway through the second period, the Air Force penalty kill came through. The Falcons killed seven minutes of Army power-play time to hold on to the one-goal lead. Late in the period, Cole Gunner forced a turnover behind the Army net and made a centering pass to the slot. Senior Paul Weisgarber came in with speed and scored his second of the weekend and fourth of the season with 3:01 left in the second for a 2-0 lead.
Early in the third period, Army (2-14-7 overall and 1-12-5 in the league) cut the Falcon lead to 2-1 as Kyle Maggard scored on a wrap around from Bill Day and Bryant Skarda at 2:32. Midway through the third period, Fabian took a pass in the neutral zone and skated down the left side. His wrister, short side, went off of the goaltender and into the net for a 3-1 lead at the 7:16 mark. Army pulled its goaltender with 2:10 remaining and then had a 6-on-4 advantage after a penalty was called on Tony Thomas. Weisgarber chipped the puck out of the zone and Fabian collected it in the neutral zone. His shot from the red line went in the empty net for a 4-2 lead with 25 seconds left. With one second remaining, Maggard tipped in a shot by Skarda to make the final margin 4-2.
Air Force out-shot Army, 19-6, in the first 40 minutes and, 28-18, in the game. AFA was 1-for-3 on the power play while Army was 1-for-6. Jason Torf made 16 saves for the Falcons while Rob Tadazak made 24 for the Black Knights.
"I couldn't be more proud of our guys," head coach Frank Serratore said. "We had to overcome some adversity and kill some penalties tonight and we did. We have been beating ourselves the last few weeks. It is tough enough to overcome your opponent and almost impossible to overcome your opponent and yourself. Tonight we didn't have to overcome ourselves. Last night, we took a step in the right direction and tonight we took another one. I liked what I saw tonight."
Air Force travels to Buffalo, N.Y., for a two-game league series with Canisius, Sunday-Monday, Jan. 29-30.