U.S. AIR FORCE ACADEMY, Colo. -RIT's Josh Mitchell scored the game-winner with 9:22 left in the third period as the Tigers came from behind for a 3-2 win over Air Force in an Atlantic Hockey Association game, Saturday, Feb. 22, at the Cadet Ice Arena. RIT improved to 9-18-5 overall and 8-14-3 in the league. Air Force fell to 19-11-4 overall and 14-8-3 in the AHA. RIT is in 10th place in the league while Air Force is tied for third.
Early in the first period, a Falcon senior scored on Senior Night to give Air Force a 1-0 lead. Defensemen Mike McDonald and Jesse Ramsey won a stick battle in the Air Force end and gave the puck to Mitch Torrel behind the net. Torrel went coast-to-coast for his eighth of the season as he went high, blocker side, to beat RIT goalie Mike Rotolo. Ramsey collected his first career point on the play.
RIT tied the game at 4:20 of the second period after the Falcons turned the puck over behind its own net. Mike Colavecchia poked the puck out front to Ben Lynch in the slot who scored his second of the series and 11th of the season. At the 9:56 mark, it seemed as though Air Force had regained the lead when a shot by Cole Gunner hit Jason Fabian and bounced around in the crease before sliding into the net. However, the goal was disallowed after video review due to goaltender interference. The Tigers then took a 2-1 lead as Todd Skirving scored from Greg Noyes at 13:28. Noyes fired the puck around the boards and the Falcons were unable to hold it in. Skirving raced down the left side and scored his eighth of the season. Air Force battled back to tie the game on senior Ryan Timar's fifth of the season and third in the last three games. Max Hartner kept the puck in at the blue line and passed to Timar in the slot. His wrister beat Rotolo high at the 16:05 mark of the second period.
Midway through the third period, Colavecchia skated the puck down the left wing and fed Mitchell in front for his sixth of the season and the eventual game-winner. Air Force pulled its goalie with 1:43 remaining and had three shots on goal, but could not score.
Air Force outshot RIT, 28-22, in the game. The Falcons were 0-for-5 on the power play while RIT was 0-for-2. Rotolo made 26 saves for the Tigers while Jason Torf made 19.
"We played a better game tonight, but we didn't get a bounce," head coach Frank Serratore said. "We had a lot of chances tonight. We had five power-plays and didn't get it done. We have no time to sit around and mope. We have to put it behind us and get ready for Niagara next week."
The Falcons travel Niagara, N.Y., for a two-game series with the Niagara Purple Eagles, Friday-Saturday, Feb. 28-March 1, at 7:05 p.m. ET each night.