Marian University men’s hockey (9-4-1, 5-4-0 NCHA) opened the second half of conference play with a 5-1 win over St. Scholastica.
The Sabre penalty kill opened the scoring for the game when sophomore Gianni Vitali caused a turnover and scored short-handed at the 8:56 mark for his eighth goal of the season. The goal also marked his fourth short-handed tally of the season putting him tops in the nation for the category.
Vitali then gave Marian a 2-0 advantage just 1:27 into the second period when he scored during a four-on-four situation. Sophomore Parker Colley and freshman Ty Enns each assisted the goal, which eventually proved to be the game-winner. Colley got in on the action when he buried a rebound just 1:50 later while Marian was on the power play. The goal was his third of the year and he was assisted by Vitali and senior Brett Radford. After a rough opening period, senior Clay Cross was able to score a short-handed goal after a chip pass from freshman goalie Colby Muise for his third goal of the season. The tally came at the 13:45 mark and gave the Sabres a 4-0 edge.
St. Scholastica would tally their only goal at the 16:46 mark of the second period while on the power play to put the score at 4-1 heading into the final period.
Radford would have the only score in the third period when he tipped in a shot from Enns while Marian had a 5-on-3 advantage. The goal was his fifth of the season and sophomore Troy Ring also earned an assist.
Marian finished with a 29-26 advantage in shots with Muise (2-0-0) stopping 25 of the shots he faced to earn the win. On special teams, the Marian penalty kill allowed just one goal on eight chances to go with two short-handed tallies, while the power play had a pair of goals on eight power plays.
Marian closes out the series with CSS tomorrow, Saturday, Jan. 11, with puck drop scheduled for 4 p.m.