Down Four, Harvard Men’s Hockey Roars Back to Beat UNH, 7-6

Blackwell celebrates the tying goal in the third period (photo courtesy Kevin Burns). Buy Now
Blackwell celebrates the tying goal in the third period (photo courtesy Kevin Burns).

CAMBRIDGE, Mass.—The Harvard men's hockey team scored seven goals over the last two periods to storm back from a four-goal, first-intermission deficit and defeat New Hampshire, 7-6, Tuesday night at Bright Hockey Center.

Colin Blackwell netted the tying and go-ahead goals in the third period, while Alex Killorn notched two goals and an assist to lead the Crimson (3-3-1) to a dramatic win in its first non-league game of the season. Eric Kroshus, Alex Fallstrom and David Valek also scored as Harvard trimmed a 4-0 deficit after one period to 5-4 through two.

Blackwell logged the tying tally at 6:51 of the third period, banging in the rebound after Ryan Grimshaw's point shot was knocked down by Valek in front. The teams were tied for five minutes before the rookie redirected a Dan Ford shot over the shoulder of New Hampshire goalie Matt Di Girolamo to put Harvard on top.

Valek's empty-net goal sealed the win for the Crimson before Stevie Moses got a final tally for the Wildcats (5-6-2) with just three seconds showing on the clock. The seven goals gave Harvard its highest scoring output since pouring in 11 goals in a shutout of Quinnipiac in the first round of the ECAC playoffs March 14, 2008.

Di Girolamo finished with 23 saves, while Steve Michalek stopped 24 of the 28 shots he faced in a relief appearance. New Hampshire held a 34-30 edge in shots and got two goals and two assists from Grayson Downing, along with two scores from Kevin Goumas and four helpers from John Henrion. Each team scored one power-play goal and won 32 faceoffs.

The outlook appeared bleak for Harvard after the Wildcats rattled off four goals in the game's first 12 minutes, starting with Downing's tally just 83 seconds into the game.

Harvard regained its composure and began whittling away at the UNH lead in the second period. Killorn scored on the power play, from Marshall Everson and Danny Biega, at 6:50 of the period. Kroshus scored 91 seconds later, snapping home a shot from the left faceoff circle after collecting the rebound of Patrick McNally's wide slap shot.

Goumas turned the momentum back in the Wildcats' favor when he took advantage of a turnover and slapped in the first shorthanded goal against Harvard this year to make it 5-2 at 14:14 of the second period. The Crimson countered at the 18:00 mark when Killorn intercepted a UNH clear and found Fallstrom in the slot to cut the deficit back to two goals.

Five seconds before the end of the frame, McNally passed ahead to Fallstrom on the rush, and the junior centered to Killorn, who redirected the puck past Di Girolamo to send Harvard to the second intermission trailing just 5-4. That set up the third-period comeback as Harvard won for the third time in four games.