|Team||First Period||Second Period||Third Period||Final Score|
|1||9:19||PSU||EV||Dylan Richard||Denis Smirnov|
|1||11:01||PSU||PP||Chase Berger||Trevor Hamilton/David Goodwin|
|1||12:18||PSU||SH||Nate Sucese||Chase Berger|
|1||13:28||PSU||EV||Vince Pedrie||Zach Saar|
|1||16:14||PSU||EV||Kevin Kerr||David Goodwin/Trevor Hamilton|
|2||15:45||PSU||EV||Liam Folkes||Trevor Hamilton/Nate Sucese|
|3||10:49||PSU||EV||Nikita Pavlychev||Nate Sucese/Liam Folkes|
|3||17:26||PSU||EV||Denis Smirnov||Nikita Pavlychev/Liam Folke|
Shots On Goal
|Team||First Period||Second Period||Third Period||Total|
Guy Gadowsky couldn’t have asked for a much better record heading into conference play. The fifth-year head coach has guided Penn State to an 11-1-1 record in non-conference play, wrapped up by Saturday’s 8-0 win over Arizona State, which completed a weekend sweep over the newest Division-I program in college hockey.
Now the No. 3 Nittany Lions have an 11-day break before they open Big Ten play against Michigan at home in the Pegula Ice Arena.
“We’re very happy with how we’ve started,” Gadowsky said following Saturday’s game. “The coaching staff congratulated the players on a great start to the season. I think they’ve done a tremendous job.”
With a week off due to Thanksgiving, the Lions will use the first couple days of the coming week to clean up problem areas before the players head home for the holiday. Chris Funkey, who posted the 18-save shutout on Saturday, said that he and Vince Pedrie will be travelling home together after Tuesday’s practice.
While Funkey admitted that Pedrie has “dynamite music,” it’s clear who will be handling the aux cord on the drive.
“Me,” Funkey said emphatically. “100 percent.”
Dylan Richard opened the scoring for the Nittany Lions after some dazzling work by Denis Smirnov. As the freshman forward dangled the puck through seemingly every member of the Sun Devils, he dropped the puck off to Richard. The senior forward fired a shot off the post, but the puck bounced off Robert Levin’s pad and into the back of the net.
Less than two minutes later, Chase Berger doubled the Lions’ lead on the power play. Trevor Hamilton fired a shot-pass in Berger’s direction. The sophomore forward steered the puck past Levin’s right skate for his sixth goal of the season.
Hamilton gave most of the credit to Berger for the goal. Funkey interjected to praise Hamilton’s play on the goal.
“He’s being modest. That was unbelievable,” Funkey said.
Just over a minute later, Nate Sucese added to the Lions’ lead with another special teams goal. After a strong forecheck from Berger, Sucese collected the puck in front of Levin. The freshman forward outwaited Levin as he slid the puck in for his eighth goal of the season.
Vince Pedrie added to the lead just over a minute later. After Zach Saar exited the penalty box, he picked up the puck and stormed down the left wing. Saar drove hard to the goal, made a quick move, then sent a backhand pass across the crease to Pedrie, who fired the puck into an open net for his fifth of the season.
Levin was pulled in favor of Ryland Pashovitz following the goal, which capped off an outburst that saw the Lions score four goals in a span of 4:09.
They weren’t done for the opening 20 minutes, however. With under four minutes to go in the opening period, Kevin Kerr beat a screened Pashovitz over the glove for his second goal of the season.
The Lions closed out the period with more goals (five) than the Devils had shots (four).
The second period was much quieter than the first, with neither side generating many prime scoring chances. That didn’t stop another freshman from scoring his first collegiate goal. Liam Folkes jumped on a glaring rebound given up by Pashovitz and buried his first goal as a Lion. Folkes became the seventh freshman to record a goal for the blue and white.
“It felt unbelievable,” he said of getting his first goal as a Lion. “I think I passed it back door to [Hamilton] here, and I said, ‘Why didn’t you put that in?’ But the rebound came to me and I got it.”
Midway through the third period, Nikita Pavlychev converted the extra point for the Lions. After a pair of saves by Pashovitz, the freshman forward shanked a third chance that fluttered over the Sun Devils goalie for Pavlychev’s third of the season.
With under three minutes to go, Pavlychev helped set up a goal for his fellow countryman. After Folkes passed the puck to Pavlychev behind the goal, the Yaroslavl, Russia native sent a pass to Moscow native Smirnov for a tap-in goal. With the goal, and an assist on the Lions opening marker, Smirnov moved into a two-way tie for second in the nation in points with 22.
As Penn State fans have seen in the past, the Lions’ offense has been dominant early this season, scoring at a clip of 4.77 goals per game. Gadowsky hopes the fans haven’t been spoiled by the Lions’ high octane offense, however.
“I hope they’re enjoying it,” he said. “We enjoy playing that way. It’s fun to watch.”