Air Force defeats Robert Morris, 3-1

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U.S. AIR FORCE ACADEMY, Colo. – Air Force’s top three goal scorers each found the back of the net as the Falcons defeated Robert Morris, 3-1, in an Atlantic Hockey Conference game, Friday, Jan. 25, at the Cadet Ice Arena. The Falcons ended a five-game winless skid (0-2-3) and improved to 12-9-4 overall and in second place in the AHC with 23 points (10-6-3).

Through the first 14 minutes of the first period, Air Force had just two shots on goal. However, the Falcons picked up the offense in the final six minutes of the first period. With under 30 seconds left, Joe Tyran pushed the puck up the wall and through the neutral zone. A Colonial defenseman broke his stick and Kieran Durgan skated in alone down the right side. His wrister from the right faceoff dot beat Francis Marotte five-hole for a 1-0 lead with 17 seconds left in the period.

The Falcons struck again late in the period, this time it was Evan Feno at the end of the second period. Evan Giesler made a pass from behind the RMU net and Feno scored from the right dot with 1:16 left in the second period.

Midway through the third period, Robert Morris got on the board on the power play. Luke Lynch’s shot from the high slot was saved, but Justin Addamo slid the puck to Alex Tonge on the back door at 7:47. Two minutes later, it looked like Air Force took a 3-1 lead when Evan Giesler scored on the rush at 10:09. However, the goal was disallowed due to a hand pass in the defensive zone.

With 55 seconds left, RMU pulled its goalie and the Falcons quickly found the empty net. Koch forced a turnover in his own end and Kyle Haak flipped a back hand from the top of the circle in the Falcon end. The puck slid into the empty net with 48 seconds remaining.

Air Force outshot RMU, 26-15. Billy Christopoulos made 14 saves for the Falcons while Francis Marotte made 23 for the Colonials. RMU was 1-for-4 on the power play while AF was 0-for-4.

“I really liked our team tonight,” head coach Frank Serratore said. “We got out of the blocks a little slow, but we played a really good three-period game and we had not done that in a while. We overcame some adversity in the game and found a way to get it done. This is something we can build on.”

The same two teams conclude the series Saturday, Jan. 26, at 5:05 pm MT at the Cadet Ice Arena.

GAME NOTES

* Durgan, Feno and Haak are all tied for the team lead with 10 goals this season

* Durgan has scored a point in three straight games and six of the last seven

* Feno scored his third game-winner of the season to tie for the team lead (Durgan)

* Matt Koch had two assists and leads the team with 19 assists and 21 points.

* Air Force is 9-0-1 when scoring first goal this season

* Air Force held RMU to just 15 shots, the second fewest of the season. The Falcons held Bentley to just 13 shots on Nov. 10.

* It was the seventh time this season the Falcons have held the opponent to 19 or less shots in a game

* Air Force is unbeaten in the last five games (4-0-1) against RMU