Photo courtesy of Justin Berl/Robert Morris Athletics
NEVILLE TWP.,Pa- Freshman forward Cameron Garvey picked the perfect opportunity to collect his first two collegiate goals on Friday night as two, third period tallies helped turn a 3-2 Robert Morris Colonial deficit into a win against the visiting Bentley Falcons at Clearview Arena. Meanwhile, in the Colonial net, graduate senior Chad Veltri turned in yet another solid performance, stopping 51 of the 54 shots he faced while collecting his second win of the season in the process as Robert Morris collected a crucial Atlantic Hockey win in regulation.
“We found a way to win,” Robert Morris head coach Derek Schooley said. “It was another lackluster performance but we found a way to get three points instead of two.
It took the Colonials just over three minutes to light the lamp following the puck drop as senior forward Cameron Hebert crossed the blue line and drove to the front of the net where he was rewarded with a perfect pass from George Krotiris and buried it past starting Falcon netminder Connor Hasley to open the scoring. It remained a 1-0 Robert Morris lead heading into the dressing room following a first frame that saw both teams create chances with the Falcons taking a 10-9 lead on the shot counter before the whistle.
Falcons Turn Game in Middle Stanza
Bentley managed to play on even terms with the Colonials in the first frame, but in the second period, the Falcons unleashed a 28 shot onslaught that saw the game turn decidedly in their favor. From the drop of the puck Bentley won the races to loose pucks and kept the puck in the Colonial end for shifts at a time while generating scoring chances. Veltri was no longer able to with stand the steady parade of puck as Chase Davis tallied at the 13:35 mark to tie the game, then just over a minute later, Nik Armstrong-Kinkade scored to give his side the lead with a power play tally. The Colonials finally came to life in the nick of time as former Ferris State forward and graduate senior Dallas Tulik beat Halsey while falling to the ice at 19:24 to restore the tie for Robert Morris, despite being out shot 28-5 for the period.
“We need to be better,” Schooley remarked. “If we didn’t have a really good goalie we would have been in some big trouble. We’ll have to watch video and make some assessments. That was winning ugly.”
Garvey’s Goals Highlight a Resilient Colonial Third Frame
The Falcons would not go away quietly however, as Jonathan Bendorf beat Veltri from the lower left circle to put his side back in front 3-2 with a power play tally just 5:45 into the third period. The faith on Colonial bench never wavered though, and with good reason as there was every reason to believe more timely goals were to come. This time, they came off the stick of Garvey who with less than four and a half minutes remaining, came off the wall behind the net, positioned between the circles down low and buried a pass from Luke Johnson past Halsey to tie the score. Garvey wasn’t finished though as threw puck past Halsey from between the circles while falling to the ice for the game winning tally with just 2:45 remaining.
“I think the first one was just a good overall forecheck from our line,” Garvey said regarding his goals on the night. “I was fortunate enough to get to the spot and get it off. And the second one, I just had some confidence after the first one, threw a puck at the net and it found its way in.”
Schooley, while not pleased with the overall effort, was pleased with the result, and the further development of parts of his freshman class that have been starting to blossom more and more one game after another.
“You’re going to see some young guys that when they get their first goal, they’re going to get the monkey off their back and start scoring more,” added Schooley. “You saw it last week with Tanner Klimpke and earlier with McKay Hayes.”
The Colonials and Falcons will finish their weekend set on Saturday, October 28 at Clearview Arena with a 4 PM faceoff.