Falcons blank AIC, 5-0; clinch third seed in AHA Tournament
March 1, 2008
U.S.A.F. ACADEMY, Colo. - Andrew Volkening made 19 saves and five different Falcons scored in a 5-0 win over AIC in an Atlantic Hockey Association game Saturday night, March 1, at the Cadet Ice Arena. The game was the regular-season finale for both teams.
With the victory, Air Force finished in third place in the AHA. The Falcons improved to 17-11-6 overall and 14-9-5 in the league. AIC finished in 10th place in the league, 8-21-5 overall and 8-17-3 in the league.
As the No.3 seed, Air Force will host the Bentley Falcons in the AHA quarterfinals at the Cadet Ice Arena. The best two out of three series begins Friday, March 7, at 7:05 p.m. MT. The teams play Saturday, March 8, at 7:05 and, if necessary, Sunday, March 9, at 7:05 p.m. AIC is the No. 10 seed and will travel to West Point to face top-seeded Army in the quarterfinals.
The Falcons jumped out early and never looked back against the Yellow Jackets. Derrick Burnett scored at the 3:53 mark to put the Falcons on the board. Matt Fairchild made a pass from the behind the net to Jeff Hajner. His shot was saved, but Burnett batted the rebound out of the air for his fifth of the season. Five minutes later, Sean Bertsch scored his first career goal for a 2-0 lead. Josh Schaffer led a rush down the left wing and his centering pass was on the tape as Bertsch scored from the slot. Owen Kelly gave the Falcons a 3-0 with a short-handed goal, his second of the season. Blake Page intercepted a pass from the AIC goalie behind the Yellow Jacket net and fed Kelly in front. With 13 seconds left in the period, Hajner scored on the power play for a 4-0 lead. Michael Mayra gave Hajner the puck in the neutral zone and the sophomore from Las Vegas split two defensemen at the blue line. His wrister beat Dan Ramirez on the short side right under the cross bar.
Brent Olson was the next Falcon to light the lamp with his 14th of the season. With 1:43 left in the second period, Olson scored from Scott Kozlak and Josh Frider. Kozlak knocked down a clearing attempt by AIC with his stick and fed Frider in the slot. Frider slid the puck to a wide open Olson at the bottom of the left circle.
Air Force outshot AIC in every period and 38-19 in the game. The Falcons were 1-for-8 on the power play while AIC was 0-for-4. Ramirez started the game in goal for AIC and allowed five goals while making 21 saves in the first two periods. Tom Fenton made 12 saves for AIC in the third period. Volkening made 19 saves in the game for his third shutout in his last five starts.