Yale tops Sacred Heart, snaps a four-game winless streak
NEW HAVEN — It took a couple weeks, but Yale is finally in the winning column in 2019.
The Bulldogs (8-5-3 and ranked 19th in the USCHO poll) had been 0-2-1 in the 2019 portion of their schedule going into Saturday night. However, Yale took advantage of a foe it has now beaten in five of six all-time meetings with a 3-1 victory over Sacred Heart at Ingalls Rink.
Yale had lost to both UConn and Maine, while tying New Hampshire before Saturday night’s victory broke an overall fourgame winless streak. The Bulldogs had last posted a win Dec. 8 against Union.
Yale was helped by the return to the lineup of defensemen Phil Kemp and Jack St. Ivany, who helped the United States to a silver medal at the World Junior Championships in Vancouver, earlier this month.
Sacred Heart scored the lone goal of the first period. On a faceoff to the left of Yale goalie Corbin Kaczperski, Marc Johnstone fed Josh Kaplan with a perfect pass in front of the net, which Kaplan converted with a wrist shot into the top right of the net.
Yale’s best chance of the first period came 14 minutes into the game when Joe Snively’s shot from the left circle went over the left shoulder of Sacred Heart goaltender Josh Benson and clanked off the top of the left post.
Yale finally tied it up at the 7:27 mark of the second period when Dante Palecco fed Andrew Gaus right in front of the net and he beat Benson with a shot over his left shoulder.
Two and a half minutes later, Yale took the lead for good, 2-1, when left wing Justin Pearson scored his fourth goal of the season from the right circle as he popped the puck past Benson’s glove side.
Snively had a chance to collect an insurance goal with 5:54 remaining in the contest, but Benson stopped him on a breakaway.
Snively put the game on ice with 38.3 seconds to play go with an open net goal.
Sacred Heart fell to 5-11-2 with the loss. The Pioneers only win against Yale came back on Nov. 22, 2011 when they took a 7-6 decision.
Yale had 34 shots, while Sacred Heart had 30.
Kaczperski recorded 29 saves for Yale, while Benson had 31 saves for the Pioneers.
Saturday night’s game was part of a benefit for the Connecticut Hockey Foundation, a non-profit established in the memory of the late Jason Pagni, a wellknown area youth coach who died in 2014.