TEMPE, Ariz. — Sun Devil Hockey (2-3-0) came alive in the third period, notching four goals to earn a 5-1 victory over the University of New Hampshire (2-1-0) at Oceanside Ice Arena.
Senior forward Demetrios Koumontzis and freshman forward Jackson Niedermayer led the Sun Devils in scoring, each tallying two goals. Graduate forward Johnny Walker extended his point streak to three games after scoring a goal of his own in the third period. Four of the five goals for Arizona State came in the third period. Between the pipes, sophomore netminder Cole Brady had 34 saves with a .971 save percentage.
“It was a good game, obviously I thought we came out and played in the third and played to our potential finally,” head coach Greg Powers said. “The boys pulled off a big win and it was good. I thought that to have our heavier lines perform the way they did was good. It helped shape our identity that we want to have.”
HOW IT HAPPENED
The Wildcats opened the scoring seven minutes into the first period.
After an uneventful first period, the Sun Devils went into the locker room trailing 1-0.
The scoring for ASU began when Niedermayer netted a goal off a feed from linemate Jack Jensen to tie the game at one.
After receiving a game misconduct, New Hampshire changed goalies midway through the second period. Mike Robinson made 17 saves before leaving the game.
The teams remained tied after 40 minutes of play.
Koumontzis took the lead five minutes into the third period. Graduate forward William Knierim had the assist.
Just two minutes later, Niedermayer went top-shelf for his second goal of the game and put the Sun Devils ahead by two.
One minute after taking the two goal lead, Walker tallied his second goal of the season putting ASU ahead 4-1.
The scoring continued as Koumontzis snuck one past New Hampshire’s goaltender for his second of the night and the 5-1 lead.
The Sun Devils will rematch against the Wildcats tomorrow for an early evening game at Oceanside Ice Arena. Puck drop is slated for 4 p.m. MST.
Niedermayer has now scored three goals in two games.
Koumontzis registered two goals for his first multi-goal game of the season.
Jensen had his first assist and second point of the season.
Brady posted a .971 save percentage with 34 saves for his first win of the season.
Walker is on a three-game point streak with two goals and one assist.
Knierim, Eckerle’s assists were their first points of the season.
The Sun Devils penalty killing unit negated all three penalties to remain perfect on the night.
Four out of the five goals for the Maroon and Gold came in the third period.
The last meeting between the Sun Devils and Wildcats was in the 2016-17 season with ASU winning 5-4 in overtime. The Sun Devils now lead the series 2-0-0.
Sophomore forward Ryan O’Reilly played his first game of the season.
ASU is now (2-1-0) when tied after two periods and (2-0-0) when scoring four or more goals and (2-2-0) when trailing after the first period.
The Sun Devils handed New Hampshire their first loss of the season.
Head coach Greg Powers
On getting a win after last weekend:
“We didn’t waiver. We believe in this team we believe in ever player. It was a matter of time before we started to score some 5 on 5 goal. Its early, we’re still on five games in and it was great that tonight the guys got it done and we didn’t have to rely on the powerplay. The kill was perfect so we are proud of that. Cole was great and the guys performed 5 on 5.”
On the challenge and goalie penalty:
“A couple of guys saw it on the bench that he gave kind of a vicious spear. I am sure the kid regrets it you now your heart goes out to him, you come out a long way. It changed the game but that’s our captain and our leader and that’s just not how the game should be played.”
On 5 on 5 play improving:
“We were just getting pucks to the net. I mean his (Komo) goals were just going hard to the net and the this kid (Niedermayer) had a couple of great finishes. Its just heavy hard. I think we were really good on the forecheck especially in the third period, forcing turnovers and we capitalized. We played our brand of hockey in the third period.”
Senior forward Demetrios Koumontzis
On the change in attitude after the first goal:
“Yeah, I think it gave the team a lot of momentum. The whole team was going and we were deep and we were playing hard but didn’t really get any chances and once you get one, as coach said in the locker room before, it just piles on. So yeah, it definitely changed the momentum and everyone stood with it and kept going.”
On getting his first goal of the season:
“It feels good. It was good to get it out of the way, but honestly it was more important to play hard and those things come, as coach preaches: you want to play hard and get it in and out and if you do that then good things happen and I think it’s more important that we got the win.”
On the guys next to him:
“I mean, I needed a lot of hard work down low. I thought we did a really good job cycling and keeping it down low and giving them hard pressure and getting some good turnovers. Those guys have worked their butts off and it definitely shows.”
Freshman forward Jackson Niedermayer
On his adjustments after the opening series:
“I think just finding my confidence. I think that’s the biggest thing for anyone is just to play with confidence. When you play with confidence, you’re going to be a confident player. Just getting out there and feeling the puck is good. To play at the level we’re playing at it’s good and to get in there and have my first game against Denver, it’s kind of like getting thrown into the fire and I enjoy it, and just try to work my back off.”