ASU hockey's historic season ended inside the PPL Center on Saturday.
Despite a late rally in Allentown, Pennsylvania, No. 3 seed ASU fell short against No. 2 seed Quinnipiac, losing 2-1 at a regional semifinal in the 2019 NCAA Ice Hockey Tournament as Quinnipiac held on late.
Quinnipiac (26-9-2) started quickly as sophomore defenseman Joe O’Connor was able to push the puck past junior goaltender Joey Daccord, who led the nation in shutouts this season, early in the first period. This put the Sun Devils down 1-0 in the first NCAA Tournament appearance in program history.
Throughout the matchup, ASU struggled to gain possession and take shots on net, especially in the second period as the Sun Devils were outshot 18-2 against Quinnipiac.
Then, freshman forward William Fällström added another goal to give Quinnipiac a 2-0 advantage against ASU as the match headed into the final period.
ASU searched for a rally in the third period, and junior defenseman Brinson Pasichnuk made the game interesting as he fired home a shot in traffic and into the net to cut the lead to 2-1 with just a little more than midway through.
ASU had a few close opportunities throughout the period, but with time winding away, the Sun Devils hoped to net an equalizing goal with an empty net.
There were a couple of scrambles late, but ASU ultimately couldn’t find a breakthrough as the final buzzer sounded.
This marks last game for Anthony Croston, Jakob Stridberg, Dylan Hollman, Jake Clifford and Jack Rowe. ASU finishes the season 21-13-1 and became the first independent – in just its fourth season as a Division I program – to play in the NCAA Tournament since Alaska-Anchorage in 1992.