ASU men's hockey ties 3-3 with Holy Cross in a successful road series

The Sun Devils' perfect series penalty kill helps them tie to finish off the weekend

ASU men’s hockey (3-8-3) tied its second game with Holy Cross (5-4-6) 3-3 after a back and forth battle that still could not be decided after an overtime period. 

“We came here with eight losses and we’re leaving with eight losses,” head coach Greg Powers said. “We want to win games, obviously and again, I hate ties. I think it’s completely just un-American — you should just play until somebody wins. It is what it is and our guys finished really strong and that’s all you can ask of your team.”

The Holy Cross Crusaders struck first as junior forward Mitch Collet scored nine seconds into the game with an assist from senior forward Brett Mulcahy off of the opening faceoff.  

The Sun Devils responded in the first minute with a lot of traffic around the net that enabled freshman forward Johnny Walker to score from the blue line for his second goal in two games. 

With the game tied 1-1, the Sun Devils spent the first period shutting Holy Cross down. ASU did not generate a lot of offense as the team had to kill multiple penalties, similar to last night. 

“Kill was really good and we battled through a ton of adversity, and probably didn’t come out as hard as we wanted. ... That is a really good team with a lot of upperclassman leadership,” Powers said

Holy Cross went 0-2 on the power play in the first period to follow their 0-5 performance from last night. 

Neither team started the second period very well, but Holy Cross took advantage of the lull when senior forward Danny Lopez scored with an assist from junior forward Peter Crinella with 13:02 remaining in the second period. 

Less than two minutes later, Holy Cross senior forward Scott Pooley scored off of a rebound with assists from senior forward  T.J. Moore and sophomore forward Kevin Darrar.

However, the Sun Devils were able to respond as sophomore defensman Brinson Pasichnuk scored with an assist from sophomore forward Tyler Busch

ASU then tied with a goal from sophomore forward Brett Gruber, assisted by freshman defenseman Jacob Wilson

In the last minutes of the second period, ASU had to kill a five-minute penalty that first turned into 4-on-4 play as the period expired. 

Then, the third period began on the 4-on-4 and Holy Cross regained the man-advantage. 

Nonetheless, the Sun Devils killed all of the penalties and kept the score tied throughout the third.  

“Really proud of our guys. I thought the officiating, unfortunately, was a little lopsided in their favor,” Powers said. “I thought we did play an undisciplined game, but we found ourselves on the kill quite a lot and our kill was unreal.”

ASU could not capitalize on any of its power plays, but Holy Cross didn't either. ASU had three power plays compared to the ten Holy Cross had. ASU tested its penalty kill and held up very well against a team that went into this game with a 14.5 percent success rate

"Just intensity, desperation. Playing selfless hockey, which we have to play,” Powers said. “Just blocking shots and clearly, like I said last night, if you’re best killer is your goalie, you’re in good shape.”

Sophomore goalie Joey Daccord had 39 saves this game, topping the 30 he had last night. 

In overtime, the Sun Devils domination of the five-minute period was to no avail. The game ended in a tie, but this is the first series in which the Sun Devils did not lose a game. 

“Then, we found a way to match it over the course of sixty minutes and we completely dominated the overtime, and really just put our foot on the gas and just couldn’t quite find the one to put us ahead for good, but we're really proud of the guys,” Powers said.

After another bye-week, the Sun Devils are set to take on Princeton at home on Dec. 8 and 9 for their next games. 

Reach the reporter at or follow @paige_burnell on Twitter.   

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