Stonehill Pulls Away From Franklin Pierce Late, 5-2

Senior forward Kevin Aufiero scored two third period goals to seal Stonehill's 5-2 win over Franklin Pierce this afternoon.

Senior Kevin Aufiero scores two third period goals as Skyhawks improve to 3-0 in NE-10 play

FOXBORO, Mass. (November 22, 2014) – Stonehill College scored three times in the final 10:08 of the third period to turn a one-goal lead into a 5-2 victory over Franklin Pierce University this afternoon in Northeast-10 Conference ice hockey action at the Foxboro Sports Center.

Senior forward Kevin Aufiero (Canton, Massachusetts/Walpole Express) led the offensive effort with three points on two third period goals and an assist as the Skyhawks extended their regular season NE-10 winning streak to 14 games.

Sophomore Brian Higgins (Milton, Massachusetts/Proctor Academy) added two points on a goal and an assist, while juniors Thomas DePoalo (Mendham, New Jersey/Morristown Beard School) and Dan Graham (Billerica, Massachusetts/Williston Northampton) also found the back of the net for Stonehill.

Senior Brendan Greene (Weymouth, Massachusetts/Boston Advantage), juniors Connor Fallon (Weymouth, Massachusetts/South Shore Kings), Richard Harris (Grand Island, New York/Valley Jr. Warriors) and Brian Furey (Quincy, Massachusetts/BC High), and freshman Connor Tedesco (Winchester, Massachusetts/Proctor Academy) chipped in with assists.

Making his second start of the season in net, junior goaltender Matt Palella (Chicago, Illinois/Loyola Academy) earned his first win after turning aside 26 of the 28 shots that came his way, including 16 in the third period.

Freshman Blake Manginell (Troy, Michigan/New York Apple Core) and sophomore Connor Mauro (Shrewsbury, Massachusetts/New England Wolves) each scored for the Ravens, while freshman netminder Etienne Roy (Saint-Henri, Quebec/Connecticut Oilers) made 38 saves.

Higgins opened the scoring for Stonehill just 42 seconds into the contest, when he collected his own rebound from a shot in front of the net and stuffed it home for his second goal of the season. Despite outshooting Franklin Pierce 19-3 in the first period, the Skyhawks would lead by only one goal heading into the first intermission.

The Ravens answered 7:58 into the second period, as freshman Jonathan Lee (Staten Island, New York/New Jersey Rockets) found Manginell to even the score at one.

Junior Matt Palella made 26 saves for Stonehill in his second start of the season.

Stonehill would regain its advantage just over two minutes later, however, as Aufiero and Greene set up DePoalo for a 5-on-3 goal at the 10:15 mark after Franklin Pierce was whistled for a pair of penalties.

Aufiero then tallied the first of three late Stonehill goals midway through the third period to give the Skyhawks a 3-1 lead that they would not relinquish.

Franklin Pierce continued to battle, cutting its deficit to one with 2:42 remaining in the contest when Mauro capitalized on a Stonehill turnover, taking the puck the length of the ice on a breakaway for his second goal of the season.

Aufiero added an empty net score with 1:01 left in the game, and Graham capped the scoring at the 19:42 mark on a feed from Harris.

Franklin Pierce was hampered by penalties throughout the contest, as the Ravens racked up nine infractions for a total of 29 minutes, including Mauro's five-minute major for contact to the head, and a ten minute misconduct for sophomore Matthew Geib (Cleveland, Ohio/Palm Beach Hawks).

Stonehill held a 43-28 advantage in shots in the game, outshooting Franklin Pierce in every period except the third (17-12). The Skyhawks converted on one of their six power play opportunities, while the Ravens were 0-for-2 with a man advantage.

Stonehill (3-2-1, 3-0-0 NE-10), winners of three straight after an 0-2-1 start to the season, is off until Tuesday, December 2nd, when the Skyhawks return to the Foxboro Sports Center to host Saint Michael's College in a rematch of last season's NE-10 Tournament semifinal. Franklin Pierce (1-5-0, 1-2-0 NE-10) is back in action this Tuesday night, as the Ravens are set to host Westfield State University at 7 p.m.

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