U.S. AIR FORCE ACADEMY, Colo. – Ryan Kruper’s power-play late in the third period broke a 2-2 tie and led RIT to a 3-2 win over Air Force in an Atlantic Hockey Conference game Saturday, Nov. 18, at the Academy’s Cadet Ice Arena.
Air Force (6-6-2 overall and 2-5-1 AHC) drew first blood as freshman Marshall Bowery scored his first career goal. Pierce Pluemer made a pass from behind to net and Erich Jaeger’s shot was saved. Bowery collected the loose puck in the slot, spun around, and put the Falcons up 1-0 at 3:57. Late in the period, RIT scored on the power play. Chase Norrish’s shot bounced off the skate of Myles Powell in the slot. The carom went right to Erik Brown on the back door who tied the game at 17:09.
The game remained tied until late in the second period when Jake Hamacher snapped a wrister from the right dot for a 2-1 Tiger advantage at 15:07.
Midway through the third period, the Falcons tied the game on the power play. Alex Mehnert took a pass from Phil Boje at the left point and his shot glanced off of an RIT defenseman in front. Jordan Himley was on the right post and scored his second of the weekend, fourth of the season, at 11:05. Late in the period, the Tigers went on the power play and scored with five seconds left on the man-advantage. Adam Brubacher’s shot hit Jordan Peacock in front and the puck bounced out to the bottom of the left circle. Kruper picked it up and went with the back-hand, high to the far corner at 14:59.
RIT (6-4-1, 6-2-0 AHC) outshot Air Force, 27-18. The Tigers were 2-for-6 on the power play while Air Force was 1-for-6. Billy Christopoulos made 24 saves for the Falcons while Logan Drackett made 16 for the Tigers.
“RIT gave it to us pretty good for the first two periods,” head coach Frank Serratore said. “They exerted a lot of energy early and Billy (Christopoulos) kept us in it. I really liked our third period. It was all about us in the third, but we needed to get a kill there at the end and didn’t. I thought maybe we could steal in a point in this one. Obviously, RIT has something to do with that. They are a good team. When you only win one of the three periods, the chances of you coming out on top are not very good.”
Air Force travels to Bridgeport, Conn., for a two-game conference series against Sacred Heart, Nov. 25-26.