COLUMBUS, OHIO – The Trine University ACHA D2 hockey team came up short in their comeback attempt during their first game of pool play at the American Collegiate Hockey Association (ACHA) National Tournament. The Thunder fell to the University of New Hampshire 6-5.
Trine fell behind early in the game giving up two goals to the Wildcats in the first five minutes of the game. They finally found the back of the net on a power play opportunity in the 14th minute of play. Freshman Adam Schaffer (Defiance, Ohio) scored the goal while freshman Brendan Werstine (Lakewood, Calif.) added an assist. The Thunder entered the first intermission down 2-1.
Coming out of the break, Trine scored a goal in the third minute of the second period to tie the game at two. Junior Braedan Pearl (Orignal, Ontario) scored the goal while freshman Michael Rand (Langley, British Columbia) added an assist.
New Hampshire would respond with four unanswered goals to finish off the period and start the third. The Thunder found themselves down 6-2 with just 13 minutes remaining in the game. Trine would not go out without a fight.
In the tenth minute of the period Rand would score a goal to bring the Thunder back within three. Schaffer and Pearl both added assists on the goal.
A minute later Trine scored again, this time on a shot from sophomore Joe Laskero (Orland Park, Ill.). Rand added another assist to finish off the night with a team high three points in the contest. The goal pulled the team within two of the Wildcats with the score at 6-4.
In the 19th minute of the period Trine pulled within one when freshman Brandon Bornkamp (Fort Wayne, Ind.) scored a goal off a rebounded shot. Freshman Jake Hatten (Granger, Ind.) and Werstine added assists on the attempt.
Down 6-5 with just over a minute remaining, The Thunder pulled their goalie for an extra attacker, but New Hampshire buckled down on defense held them off for the victory. The loss is Trine's first of the season.
The Thunder will continue pool play tomorrow, March 10, against the University of Toledo with puck drop scheduled for 8 p.m.