13th-Ranked Lord Jeffs Rally for 4-2 Win Over Babson

Rookie Nick Brunette had an assist to go along with the
game-winner in Amherst's 4-2 win over Babson.

AMHERST, MA – The 13th-ranked Amherst College men’s hockey team played host to Babson College this evening at Orr Rink in NESCAC-ECAC interleague action. The Lord Jeffs erased a 2-0 first period deficit to with four unanswered goals for a 4-2 win. Amherst improves to 16-4-3 (11-4-3 NESCAC) with the victory, while Babson drops to 12-10-2 (9-8-1 ECAC).

After the Amherst power play unit came up empty in early minutes of the game, Babson’s extra-skater group went on the offensive when junior Gavin Carson (Montreal, Quebec) was sent to the penalty box for interference. Early in the ensuing power play, Babson’s Ryan Smith got position on the crease and controlled a shot from the point. Smith spun with the puck on his backhand and snuck a shot past Amherst goaltender Cole Anderson (Sylvan Lake, Alberta) into the bottom right corner.

Just over five minutes later, Babson took a 2-0 lead on as Jay Haseley dished to Smith once again to Anderson’s glove side. The Beavers’ second goal came on the power play as well, with Smith lifting a one-timer past Anderson’s mitt as he moved from right to left in goal.

With 4:24 remaining in the first period, Amherst was given a golden opportunity to get back into the game as a second Babson player went into the penalty box to set up nearly a minute of five-on-three action.  The Lord Jeffs put a handful of shots on Babson netminder Zeke Testa, but could not score on the power play.

The second period saw each team come up empty on a number of power plays, but in the final two minutes of the frame Amherst finally closed the gap to 2-1. With just 1:23 showing on the clock, Joe Brock (Cumming, GA) redirected a Brandon Hew (Fresno, CA) shot past Testa. Brock had skated past the Babson goal, but got his stick on a shot that was a few feet wide of the net and changed its course on frame.

Just 1:58 into the third period, Amherst tied the game 2-2 as Mike Moher (Toronto, Ontario) beat Testa on the stick side from just outside the crease. Assists the equalizer came from Nick Brunette (Chaska, MN) and Matt Rhone (Dedham, MA). The Lord Jeffs took their first lead at 3-2 at the exact midpoint of the third period, when Brunette blasted a slap shot from the left point past Testa.  Helpers on the go-ahead goal were awarded to senior captain Keith Nelson (Manalapan, NJ) and Mark Colp (Wareham, MA).

Three minutes later, the Amherst offense continued to roll with Eddie Effinger (Belleville, IL) putting a puck towards the net for junior Luke Arnold (Lincoln, MA) to shoot past Testa. With five minutes remaining, Babson’s James Ebzery beat Anderson but not the frame as his shot on a wrap-around bounced off the pipe and settled under the Amherst goaltender’s leg pad.

Down the stretch Babson pulled Testa for an extra skater, but then had to bring him back on the ice when a Beaver player was sent to the penalty box. Amherst was able to skate out the final minute of the game playing keep away behind its own net. Anderson(13-4-3) finished the night with 25 saves for the win, while Testa made 24 saves in the losing effort.