Buffalo, N.Y.- Senior co-captain Steve Saviano (Reading, Mass.) tallied a career-high four goals to propel the University of New Hampshire men's hockey team to a 8-2 win over the Canisius College Golden Griffins in the opening game of the Punch Imlach College Hockey Showcase Tournament on Friday, October 24 at HSBC Arena.
With the win, the Wildcats improve to 3-0-0 on the season, while the Golden Griffins drop to 0-3-2 on the year.
UNH's top two forward lines accounted for 14 of UNH's 16 points on the night. The Wildcats special teams played well, finishing the game three for seven of the power play and killing off all seven power plays by Canisius.
Saviano recorded the 'Cats last two goals of the second period at 5:32 and 17:54 and his final of the game at 1:54 in the third stanza. Freshman Jacob Micflikier (Winnipeg, Manitoba) scored the first goal of his Wildcat career at 5:21 of the third frame and later capped off the scoring with UNH's eighth goal of the game at 14:57.
Junior forward Justin Aikins (Surrey, B.C.) got on the board 55 seconds into the second period after junior forward Preston Callander (Regina, Sask.) stole the puck from a Canisius player and fed the puck to Aikins for his second goal of the season.
Saviano scored the second 'Cats goal of the game at 14:29 of the first frame after he came from behind the net and popped the puck over the shoulder of Canisius goalie Bryan Worosz. Micflikier assisted on the play and recorded his first collegiate point as a Wildcat.
Junior forward Sean Collins (Reading, Mass.) opened the game scoring with his second goal of the season at 10:53 of the first period on a shorthanded goal, after he picked off a pass from a Canisius player. Collins finished the game with a goal and two assists for three points, while Callander recorded two assists. Freshman forward Josh Ciocco (Atco, N.J.) posted his first collegiate point with a secondary assist on Micflikiers first career goal.
In his second career start, UNH goaltender Jeff Pietrasiak (Shrewsbury, Mass.) stopped 17 of 18 shots by Canisius, while freshman A.J. Bucchino played the final 4:09, stopping one of two shots by the Golden Griffins. Worosz notched 14 saves in two periods in the loss for the Golden Griffins and Max Buetow played the third period, making seven saves on 10 shots.
In the first game of the tournament, sophomore forward Ben Walter guided UMass-Lowell to a 6-1 victory with his first-career hat-trick.
The Wildcats return to action on Saturday, Oct. 25 vs. Niagara University in the final day of the Punch Imlach Tournament. Face off at HSBC Arena is 4 p.m.