The championship game between the defending champions Robert Morris and Quinnipiac was the game of the night. The Colonials were looking for their 3rd title in the fifth installment of the Three Rivers Classic.
Francis Marotte was the story of the game against Ferris State and Daniel Leavens scored the only goal. Robert Morris would look for more production from the offense and the same rock solid goal tending. Marotte would get the start for the Colonials and Truehl would start for Quinnipiac.
An early goal by Quinnipiac would put them ahead 1-0 just two minutes into the first period. A beauty of a pass by Quinnipiac’s Kevin Duane set up Chase Priskie for the goal. Priskie beat Marotte on the blocker side after he took the shot just above the hash.
A breakaway late in the period by Luke Lynch had the fans on their feet as he flew into the zone. Lynch couldn’t capitalize due to the robbery of Bobcat goaltender Chris Truehl.
The Colonials were having some trouble executing their game plan of dump and chase as the defense of Quinnipiac smothered most opportunities. Robert Morris worked their game and had a good power play chance that was cut short by a tripping penalty called against Timmy Moore.
“In the first period we didn’t really play our game. I thought we stood around a little bit and watched.” said Coach Schooley. It showed as the Colonials failed to muster up a goal.
Robert Morris came out in the second more energized and ready. They took the first portion by storm: hitting, shooting and drawing penalties. RMU played their game and were rewarded on the powerplay when Alex Tonge scored off of a slap-pass from Daniel Leavens. Tonge got the puck in between Truehl’s leg pad and the post for the tally.
The Colonials broke the goose egg open. The remainder of the period would be penalty after penalty done mostly by Robert Morris.
Then, Quinnipiac took a penalty in the final minute and a half of the game. The biscuit found its way to captain Rob Mann’s stick with 46 seconds remaining. Mann took the puck and blasted it from the point, beating Truehl on the left side. An absolute cannon from the captain for his second goal of the season.
“Once we got that first goal, I thought the bench started to believe. That’s when I scored.” said Mann.
The Colonials narrowed the shot gap by the end of the second to nine; Quinnipiac had 30 and Robert Morris, 21.
The third period started extremely well for the Colonials. A goal by Spencer Dorowicz gave the RMU fans some air as that made the game 3-1.
Dorowicz said, “It’s always nice to score. Goals haven’t been coming easy this year but it was nice to get one here today.”
Robert Morris would go on the powerplay a minute late and came extremely close to scoring. Scott Davidson of the Bobcats got his stick on the goal line and batted the puck away.
A minute after the amazing save by Davidson, Truehl wished he was there once more to bail him out. A wrist shot by Timmy Moore all but solidified a Robert Morris victory.
Quinnipiac wasn’t done fighting yet. They threw the rubber at Marotte every chance they had.
A late penalty by Daniel Leavens sent Quinnipiac on the powerplay with six minutes remaining. The Bobcats proceeded to pull their goalie to try and shorten the three goal deficit. This just made it worse as Timmy Moore cleared the puck right into the empty net of Quinnipiac. This increased the lead to four making the score 5-1.
A sprawling save by Francis Marotte at the end of the game kept the score 5-1. He unfortunately let up a goal on the penalty kill just seconds later. Thomas Aldworth beat Marotte through the five hole. It wouldn’t be enough; however, the Colonials would go on to win the game 5-2.
“After we got the first goal, I think, we really started to believe. We got better as the game went on. It’s nice to get goals from different people. I’m really excited for our program.” Schooley said on the win.
Robert Morris won their third title in a fantastic championship game against #13 Quinnipiac.
A tournament praised for its class and difficulty of competition, falls once more into the hands of the Robert Morris Colonials.