Berkstresser scores game-winner in OT for 3-2 RMU win
U.S.A.F. ACADEMY, Colo. -- Sean Berkstresser scored the game-winning goal in overtime to lift Robert Morris to a 3-2 win over Air Force in a College Hockey America game Friday night, Feb. 24, at the Cadet Ice Arena.
Robert Morris moved into fourth place with the win and improved to 10-17-3 overall and 5-10-2 in the CHA. Air Force's three-game winning streak ended with the loss. The Falcons fell to 9-18-1 overall and 6-11 in the league.
The Colonials got on the board with two goals in the first period. Jason Towsley opened the scoring at the 2:29 mark of the first period. His shot from the right faceoff dot hit off of Peter Foster's glove and trickled over the goal line for a 1-0 lead. RMU took a 2-0 lead when Doug Conley scored at the 12:46 mark. Conley and Berkstresser came down the ice on a 2-on-1 rush. Their give-and-go play gave the Colonials a 2-0 lead.
Neither team scored in the second period, despite the Falcons holding a 17-4 shot advantage. Most of the shots came from the outside as Christian Boucher was able to keep the net clean.
Air Force battled back in the third period to tie the game and force overtime. Just over three minutes into the period, Billy Devoney scored from Mike Phillipich and Andrew Ramsey. Devoney's fourth of the season came on a shot from the left point that got though a lot of traffic in front of Boucher. Three minutes later, Eric Ehn tied the game with his 12th of the season. Mike Phillipich made a centering pass from behind the net to Ehn at right post. Ehn made one quick move on Boucher and then flipped a back-hander over his shoulder stick side. The Falcons out-shot the Colonials, 16-6, in the third period. Boucher and Foster both same some big stops in the third period to force overtime.
With 1:32 left in the extra period, Berkstresser sent a pass toward the goal from the left boards. As players from both teams were skating down the slot, the puck deflected off of a skate and went under the pads of Peter Foster for the Colonial win.
Boucher made 40 saves in the game for RMU while Foster made 14 for the Falcons. Air Force out-shot RMU, 42-17, in the game. Just four penalties were called in the game as Air Force was 0-for-3 on the power play and RMU was 0-for-1.
"We didn't play with a lot of intensity in the first two periods," head coach Frank Serratore said. "We played perimeter hockey for two periods and you can't do that at this level. We were outstanding in the third period, but we waited too long. Robert Morris is a difficult team to play against. If you don't get a lot of bodies in front of the net, it is awful hard to score on Boucher."
The same two teams conclude the series Saturday, Feb. 25, at 7:35 p.m. MST. It is the final home game of the season for the Falcons and the final home game for three Falcon seniors. Matt Bader, Mike Knaeble and Brooks Turnquist will make their final appearance at the Cadet Ice Arena Saturday night.