Heading into a season, Guy Gadowsky generally doesn’t like to make it known who he’s leaning toward as his starting goalie. Save for the Peyton Jones era, he’ll try to give each goalie their chance early in the season before settling on a starter.
As he spoke to the media for the first time a couple weeks ago, however, he seemed to already have his mind made up. It was Oskar Autio’s job to lose.
After Liam Souliere’s performance on Saturday afternoon, Autio’s seat might be feeling just a bit warmer.
Souliere stopped 36 shots as the Nittany Lions bounced back from last night’s disappointing performance with a 5-2 win over Canisius.
Goals By Period
Souliere, who had quite a bit of hype surrounding his arrival to State College, appeared in just five games during his freshman season, posting just one win as freshman nerves seemed to take over him. On Saturday, he looked significantly more composed in the crease.
“It was really nice to see how composed he looked at the start,” Gadowsky said. “I think you can attribute that to whatever mental drills he’s been doing, but also the fact that he’s experienced.”
How It Happened
After killing an early penalty, the Nittany Lions opened the scoring with an incredible solo effort by Danny Dzhaniyev. The freshman pulled off a toe drag past a Golden Griffin and snuck a backhand shot past Matt Ladd.
Just 30 seconds into the second period, Connor MacEachern doubled the Nittany Lions lead as he sniped a shot off the post and in from the point.
Once again, the Nittany Lions extended their lead early in the third period. As Christian Sarlo moved in one-on-one with a Canisius defender, he wired a shot through the defender’s legs and over the glove of Ladd.
The Golden Griffins broke Souliere’s shutout bid midway through the third period as Keaton Mastrodonato beat the goalie far side on a shorthanded break.
The Nittany Lions answered quickly on that same power play, as Tyler Gratton lifted a backhand shot into the goal.
The Golden Griffins got one back with just under four minutes to play, as Max Kouznetsov banked a shot past Souliere off the skate of Jimmy Dowd Jr.
With the goalie pulled for the Golden Griffins, MacEachern netted his second of the game on the empty net.