Posted: Nov 13, 2009 8:51 PM
WORCESTER, Mass . - Andrew Volkening earned his second straight shutout and Matt Fairchild scored the game-winning goal late in the third as Air Force defeated Holy Cross, 1-0, in an Atlantic Hockey Association game, Friday night, Nov. 13, at the Hart Center in Worcester, Mass.
Air Force, 5-5-1 overall, remained in first place in the AHA with a 5-1-1 league record and 11 points. Holy Cross fell to 3-5-1 overall and 3-3-1 in the AHA.
With the game scoreless late in the third period, Fairchild took the puck in the neutral zone, blazed down the right side and went top shelf for the only goal of the game. Jeff Hajner and Brad Sellers assisted on the play. For Hajner, it was his 100th career point.
With 1:23 left in the third period, Scott Kozlak was called for a cross-checking penalty to put Holy Cross on the power play. The Crusaders pulled their goaltender and had a 6-on-4 advantage for the final 83 seconds. Holy Cross took six shot attempts during that time, three were wide and two were blocked by Fairchild. The final shot came from the slot as Crusader Jordan Cyr took a pass and from the goal line and had some open net to shoot at as time was winding down. Volkening slid from his right to his left and made a glove save on Cyr's wrister just as time expired to preserve the 1-0 victory.
The two goaltenders, Volkening of Air Force and freshman Thomas Tysowsky of Holy Cross did not allow a goal in the first 53 minutes. Air Force outshot Holy Cross, 11-10, in the first period, but Volkening made three short-handed saves, two on breakaways to keep the game scoreless. In the second period, Holy Cross outshot Air Force, 8-1, in the first 10 minutes and held a 12-7 advantage in the period.
The third period was back and forth with each team having a couple scoring chances. Shortly after Air Force was unable to convert on the power play, Fairchild netted his fourth of the season and his second game-winner.
"Volkening turned in a special performance and he had to since we only scored one goal," head coach Frank Serratore said. "He had five or six big time saves in the game. Then at the end he makes a save at the buzzer. We have to score more goals. We had a good third period and took the play to them. The goal just culminated a lot of good shifts in a row. This was one of those games that could have easily ended in a tie. This was hard fought and we were fortunate to get a road win over a very good team. There was great tempo and pace to the game."
Air Force outshot Holy Cross, 30-29, in the game. AFA was 0-for-3 on the power play while Holy Cross was 0-for-4. Both goaltenders had 29 saves in the game.
The same two teams conclude the series Saturday night, Nov. 14, at 7:05 p.m. EST in Worcester, Mass.