The Clarkson University Hockey team honored former Golden Knight standout Craig Conroy ’94 by retiring his number (#7) prior to Saturday night’s game against Holy Cross, but unfortunately the Green and Gold could not carry over the celebration into the evening as the Crusaders were able to skate to a 3-1 victory before 2,898 fans in the season opener at Cheel Arena.
Clarkson, which stands at 0-3 on the year, will look to gain its first win of the 2012-13 campaign when it host Niagara University in a two-game series next weekend in Potsdam.
Holy Cross (2-0) and Clarkson battled to a fairly even contest with the Knights holding 37-26 advantage in shots. The Green and Gold went 1-of-4 on the power play and killed off all four of the Crusaders’ man-advantage chances.
Tied 1-1 late in the second period, Holy Cross gained the advantage on the scoreboard when Adam Schmidt redirected a shot from the point by Nilan Nagy at 18:45 for the game-winner. Evan Zych also assisted.
The visitors added an insurance goal at 8:50 of the third period when Brandon Nunn converted a penalty shot after being tripped on a breakaway.
Clarkson pulled freshman goaltender Greg Lewis (Mars, PA) for the extra attacker with just under three minutes to play, but could not close the gap.
Holy Cross opened the scoring at 14:33 of the first with Jake Youso's tip-in goal off a shot by defenseman Evan Zych. The Knights came back less than two minutes later as sophomore Joe Zarbo (Grand Island, NY) picked up the puck along the right boards, skated into the slot and wristed a shot under the crossbar at 16:29 for a power-play tally, his first goal of the season. Junior Allan McPherson (Kinburn, ONT) and freshman defenseman Paul Geiger (Stouffville, ONT) assisted.
Lewis posted 23 saves in his second collegiate start, including 13 first-period stops. Matt Ginn made 36 saves to record the road win.