HOOKSETT, New Hampshire – After 65 minutes of action and the score still tied at 1-1, Saturday's first-round game of the 2011 P.A.L. Cup would be decided in the shootout with UMass Boston's Travis Daniel (North Brunswick, N.J.) and Anthony Fitti (Watertown, Pa.) converting on their opportunities to lead men's hockey (2-4-1) to a 2-1 decision over Worcester State University (1-3-2). With the win, the Beacons advance to the championship game of the P.A.L. Cup for the fourth-straight season.
In the shootout, both teams struggled to find the back of the cage in the first three rounds. After a miss by Worcester State to start the fourth round, Daniel gave the Beacons the 1-0 lead. In the fifth round Worcester States' Andrew Pierson tied the shootout at 1-1. Knowing his goal would give the Beacons the win Fitti drove home the game-winning shot to push UMass Boston back into the championship round of the two-day tournament.
Giving the Beacons the early 1-0 lead in the first period was senior Brian Albert on the power-play. Mike DeGrazia and Rob Florentino each earned an assist on Albert's first goal of the season. That goal would be the only one scored for the rest of the first and all of the second period. In the third, Worcester State got on the scoreboard at the 5:47 mark on a RY Byrne goal.
Between the pipes Alex Scola (Exeter, N.H.) was solid for all 65 minutes as he came-up with 15 saves, while his Lancers counterpart Bryan Kalczynski posted 26 saves.
As a team, the Beacons totaled 27 shots in the contest and were 1-for-4 on the power-play. Worcester State recorded 16 shots on goal, and was 0-for-4 on their man-up opportunities.
Men's hockey returns to the ice tomorrow at 4:30 p.m. when they face the University of New England in the championship game of the P.A.L. Cup.