Air Force falls to RIT, 2-1, despite a 44-11 shot advantage

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U.S. AIR FORCE ACADEMY, Colo. RIT goalie Logan Drackett made 43 saves to lead the Tigers to a 2-1 win over the Falcons in an Atlantic Hockey Association game, Thursday, Oct. 24, at the Cadet Ice Arena. It was the conference opener for both teams.

Air Force dominated play for the first five minutes, outshooting RIT, 9-0. RIT’s first shot on goal came 5:30 into the game. Late in the period, the Falcons were whistled for too many men on the ice and the Tigers capitalized. Jake Hamacher’s shot from the left circle was saved, but Shawn Cameron cleaned up the rebound with 1:15 left in the first period. The Falcons outshot the Tigers, 15-6, in the opening stanza.

After a scoreless second period, RIT (4-1-0, 1-0-0 AHA) took a 2-0 lead early in the third. Andrew Petrucci controlled the puck on the half-wall and fed Elijah Gonsalves in the slot. The freshman scored his second of the season for a 2-0 lead at 5:29 of the third. Air Force got on the board late in the period. Brady Tomlak forced a turnover behind the Tiger net and fed Matt Pulver out front. The senior captain netted his team-leading third of the season at 13:41. Air Force pulled the goalie with 1:44 remaining and had one shot on goal and two other attempts blocked by the Tigers.

Air Force (0-5-0, 0-1-0 AHA) outshot RIT, 44-11, in the game. The 44 shots are a season high while the 11 allowed are also a season best. RIT was 1-for-3 on the power play while AF was 0-for-4. Zach LaRocque made nine saves for the Falcons. Air Force attempted 88 shots in the game with 21 blocked by the Tigers, three pipes and 43 others saved by Drackett.

“We have to find a way to score goals,” head coach Frank Serratore said. “If we don’t, things will get worse before they get better. I told our guys they have to keep their heads up. We can’t feel sorry for ourselves. Our effort was fabulous. We carried the play territorially, but have to find a way to score.”

Air Force and RIT conclude the two-game league series on Friday, Oct. 25, at 7:05 pm MT at the Cadet Ice Arena.