Army Hockey loses back to back games by 4-2 Scorelines
Game 1 saw Army and Air Force display their proficiency on the powerplay. Air Force struck first, with a goal by Matt Pulver at 15:39 of the 1st, which was the only goal of the opening frame. The Cadets would strike back with a powerplay tally by Dominic Franco, which just barely trickled over the line.
This goal would be answered by a powerplay tally from the Falcons Zack Mirageas. The third period saw Army tie the game with yet another powerplay marker, this time by Trevor Fidler, but that would be all she wrote for the Cadets. Air Force tacked on 2 more goals in the 3rd, including the empty netter, and that was the game. Army was outshot 29-21 to lead to the Final Score: 4-2
Game 2 was a similar storyline to game 1. Air Force would once again strike first, with Trevor Stone burying his 3rd goal of the year at 2:04 of the 2nd on the powerplay to open the scoring. Air Force would tack on another, with Kyle Haak scoring at 14:20. Army fought back, striking just 11 seconds later with Marshal Plunkett scoring at 14:31. The goal is worth looking at, as it was a brilliant effort from Plunkett for his first career tally.
The third saw Air Force lock it out once again, scoring 2 more, with Daniel Haider tallying for the Knights to make it close, but not close enough. Air Force once again put in the empty net goal to lock out the game. Army put up 30 shots to Air Force’s 26, but it wasn’t enough. Final Score: 4-2
What this means
Army saw their 5 game unbeaten streak snapped, and their record has dropped to 4-4-1, which interestingly enough, is also the Falcons record after posting the 2 wins. Army took 5 penalties between the 2 games, and gave up 3 powerplay goals, meaning their kill percentage was just a measly 40% efficient. I had pointed out that Army needed to stay disciplined to beat Air Force, and they did a decent job of it, but Air Force was just too efficient on the powerplay for the Knights. This also shows that the Knights have some room to grow in terms of their clutch time performances, as they entered both 3rd periods only down by 1 goal, and couldn’t stage the comeback in either match. The Knights were able to limit the Falcons chances, but couldn’t limit their powerplay, which ultimately made a huge difference in the series.
These 2 wins knocked Army down to a tie 2nd place in the Atlantic Hockey standings with AIC, where they now sit 1 point behind the Air Force Falcons.
The look ahead
Army plays a home-and-home against fellow Atlantic Hockey members, the Sacred Heart Pioneers. Game 1 is November 9th at Tate Rink in West Point, and game 2 is at Sacred Heart in Fairfield, CT. This is a good opportunity for the Knights to get back in the win column and post more AHA points, as the Pioneers have struggled so far this season, posting a 1-3-1 record, their only win coming by way of a 3-2 contest against Bentley (Who Army will play the week after taking on Sacred Heart).