Second period surge helps Nichols shut out Salve Regina

Provided by Salve Regina University

PORTSMOUTH, R.I. – Nichols College men’s ice hockey defeated Salve Regina University, 5-0, in ECAC Northeast action at the Portsmouth Abbey. The Bison, who improve to 12-3-2 overall and 4-1-1 in league play, featured 10 different players in the scoring. Salve Regina gets blanked for the second time in its last three games and falls to 5-8-2 overall and 3-3-0 in ECAC Northeast action.

Sophomore forward Sean Swansen (Salem, N.H.) took a loose puck on the right goal line and fired his shot off the post and in for a first-period score at 12:42. Swensen’s eighth goal of the season came courtesy of assists from Brett Jackson (Larchmont, N.Y.) and Sean Fleming (Easthampton, N.J.).

Salve Regina, which had successfully killed the period’s only penalty before the eighth minute, put 12 shots in front of junior netminder Alex Larson (Madison, Alabama), while Larson’s teammates put 14 shots on Seahawk starter Frankie McCormick (Peabody, Mass.).

Both teams took 23 shots each in the final two periods; the only difference was Nichols had four of its 17 shots in the middle period light the lamp. The Seahawks had 17 shots in the third period but all were denied by Larson.

Senior Kyle Shapiro (Ambler, Pa.) scored his fourth goal of the season, unassisted, at 8:09 in the second period for a 2-0 Bison lead. With 9:58 elapsed in the second, senior Frank Butler (East Haven, Conn.) produced his team-leading 10th goal of the season with helpers from his line mates, Paul Prescott (Oakdale, Minn.) and Tyler Beasley (Indianapolis, Ind.). Prescott and Beasley are tied with Fleming for the team lead in points (20 each).

The Butler goal did it for McCormick. Seahawk head coach Andy Boschetto called a timeout and replaced his starter with another senior goalie, Jake Williams (Montréal, Quebec). Williams responded with saves in his first couple of tests, but the Bison cashed in on a power-play opportunity with Beasley notching his sixth goal of the season at 13:56.

Joe Sposit (Cleveland, Ohio) completed the scoring with his fourth goal of the season less than a minute later. Scott Cuthwell (Waterford, Mich.) and Daniel Bufis (Linden, N.J.) earned assists on the last scoring play at 14:52 in the second.

Larson completed his third shutout of the season with 35 saves, almost half coming in the third, and improves to 10-2-2 in 2014-15. McCormick stopped 18 shots in the loss to drop to 1-2 on the season; Williams’ efforts were interrupted by a two-minute plus span during the third period with an empty net. He made 14 saves.

Salve Regina plays at Johnson & Wales on Thursday (7:45 p.m.) while the Bison start a three-game homestand on Tuesday hosting Western New England (8 p.m.).

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