DURHAM, N.H. – Three different Wildcats found the back of the net, including an equalizer by Scott Pavelski (Plover, Wis.) late in the third period to force overtime, as the No. 4 University of New Hampshire men's hockey team skated to a 3-3 draw against Providence College on Sunday afternoon at the Whittemore Center.
UNH moved to 16-7-3 on the season and 11-6-2 in Hockey East play, while Providence went to 10-10-6 overall and 8-6-5 in conference action.
In addition to Pavelski, Grayson Downing (Abbotsford, B.C.) and Dan Correale (Prince George, British Columbia) also scored for the Wildcats, while Downing added an assist. Maxim Gaudreault (Annapolis, Md.) also finished with a pair of helpers.
UNH netminder Casey DeSmith (Rochester, N.H.) turned away 39 shots, while Jon Gillies recorded 41 saves in net for the Friars. UNH outshot the Friars, 44-42.
Providence jumped out to a 1-0 advantage at 13:27 in the first period on a power-play goal by John Gilmour. Shane Luke set up the play in the UNH zone as he hit Nick Saracino with a pass behind the net, before Saracino then found Gilmour right in front of the cage for a goal high glove side. UNH outshot the Friars by a margin of 17-6 in the opening period.
New Hampshire struck back with a goal from Downing at 14:52 in the second period. Dalton Speelman (San Jose, Calif.) sent a shot from just past the blue line, but Gillies could not control the puck on the save and Downing blasted in the rebound on a one-timer to even the score at 1-1. PC outshot the Wildcats in the second period, 14-10.
UNH did not waste any time after the second intermission as the Wildcats scored a power-play goal just 30 seconds into the third period. Downing intercepted a pass right behind the PC net and slipped the puck to Corrreale, who wrapped it around the post to give the home side the 2-1 lead. Trevor van Riemsdyk (Middletown, N.J.) was also credited with an assist on the play.
New Hampshire's lead did not last long, however, as the Friars answered back to two unanswered goals. Saracino scored a power-play goal at 5:05 after Paul De Jersey sent a pass through traffic, while Luke also picked up an assist. PC scored again at 9:35 as Drew Brown took advantage of a UNH turnover and fed Saracino once again for the go-ahead goal.
UNH netted the equalizer at 16:34 when Casey Thrush (Easton, Md.) fought hard for the puck behind the PC net. Thrush managed to gain possession and push it out to a waiting Pavelski in front of the cage, who sent it past Gillies to even the score at 3-3 and eventually force overtime.
In the extra five-minute frame, Providence outshot the Wildcats by a 5-1 margin but DeSmith turned away the flurry of PC bids to preserve the 3-3 tie.
The Wildcats return to action on Wednesday, Feb. 13 when they visit Providence at 7 p.m. For more information, visit www.unhwildcats.com.