Theatrical affair ends in tie for ASU and Brown in Desert Hockey Classic

After six different lead changes, the Sun Devils' dramatic contest with Brown ended in a tie.

The Sun Devils came into their first game of the Desert Hockey Classic in Prescott Valley on Friday with the chance to extend their winning streak to four games and get their first-ever win in their own tournament.

Instead, ASU hockey tied with Brown University by a score of 8-8.

The game was far from concise. Brown (3-9-1) continued to answer ASU’s goals and eventually forced an overtime. For conference purposes, the teams settled the game with a 3-on-3 second overtime, which Brown won. But officially, the game counts for both squads as a tie.

The lead changed hands six different times.

“It was just a crazy game," head coach Greg Powers said. “It was one of those games. I don’t even know how to comment on it because I’ve never been part of a game like that.”

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The second period was less than three minutes old when Brown’s top-line junior forward, Charlie Corcoran, completed a hat trick to make it 3-2. Soon thereafter, a Brown shorthanded goal brought the score to 4-2.

ASU responded well with four unanswered goals in the second period to make it 6-4, but Brown tied things up later – over and over again – every time ASU looked to have a decisive lead.

Still, ASU kept fighting.

“If they get one, we’ve got to get one or two,” said sophomore forward Louie Rowe, who had two goals and an assist in the tie. “That’s our identity, we’re never going to give up, we’re never going to let off the gas. We just didn’t have enough tonight.”

The Sun Devils’ special teams didn’t help matters, as they allowed two power play goals and a shorthanded goal (on a positive note, they scored two power play goals of their own).

“Our special teams were below average, for sure,” Rowe said. “Penalty kill, we were a little off on our detail and executing.”

Brown’s Corcoran was also a challenge for ASU. Though he already had a hat trick less than halfway through the game, he wasn’t finished: Corcoran ended the night with four goals, two assists and nine shots on goal.

“I’ve got to be captain obvious, we’ve got to figure out our D-zone (defensive zone) here,” Rowe said. “We can’t take any offensive penalties. We’ve just got to come together collectively, as a group.”

Senior goaltender Robert Levin allowed all eight of the official goals – as well as the ninth one in the unofficial 3-on-3 overtime – making 28 saves on 37 shots. Powers said the game was not decided by goaltending and didn’t want to throw in a replacement with little time remaining.

At the game’s end, many Sun Devils went to give Levin a pat on the back for his effort.

In the news of positive individual performances for ASU, sophomore forward Anthony Croston notched five assists.

For the second straight year, the Sun Devils will play in the consolation game on Saturday for day two of the Desert Hockey Classic in Prescott Valley, Arizona. They’ll face No. 18 St. Cloud State, which UConn upset before ASU’s game on Friday.

Meanwhile, UConn will play Brown on Saturday for first place.

“We obviously can’t play for the championship in our tournament tomorrow, which is really disappointing,” Powers said. “But we’ve got a great opportunity against a really good team tomorrow in St. Cloud, and we’re going to hit the reset button and come back and see what we can do.”


Reach the reporter at matthew.layman@asu.edu or follow @Mattjlayman on Twitter.

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