LAKE FOREST, Ill. – Marian University men’s hockey (10-12-3, 5-10-2-1 NCHA) scored the final two goals to defeat Lake Forest 6-4 in the final game of the regular season.
The Foresters needed just 57 seconds to open the scoring but Marian responded scoring four unanswered goals. Sophomore Anthony Bilka scored without an assist 2:19 into the game to tie the score before senior Gianni Vitali gave Marian the lead at the 8:21 mark, assist to sophomore Nolan Kadachuk. This gave the Sabres a 2-1 lead after one period of action.
Sophomore Ty Mosimann then scored at the 6:33 mark of the second period with assists to freshman Alex Rondeau and senior Nathan Walker. A power-play goal gave the Sabres a 4-1 lead with freshman Jordan Simoneau lighting the lamp, assists to Rondeau and Vitali. Lake Forest had a strong finish to the period, however, scoring three times to send the game into the third knotted at 4-4.
Sophomore Austin Nault broke the tie at the 5:43 mark of the third period for the game-winner, assist to senior Yuri Chernichko. Sophomore Mason Richey was able to give the Sabres breathing room with just 2:03 left in the game with a power-play score, assists to Nault and senior Parker Colley.
The Sabres were outshot by a 39-30 margin with Colley recording a team-high five shots. Junior Colby Muise (9-11-3) stopped 35 shots and held the Foresters scoreless on five power plays.
With the win Marian clinches the No. 7 seed for the NCHA Harris Cup Playoffs and will travel to St. Norbert for the quarterfinal round. The quarterfinals will be two games with a mini-game, if necessary, Feb. 18-19 with a 7 p.m. puck drop for both games.