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RPI Throws Away Clock in Victory

By Matt Graves

Albany Times Union, December 29, 2001

TROY - It was the longest game in RPI hockey history, but one that was worth the wait for the Engineers and their fans.

Chris Migliore scored from the slot at 10:50 of the second overtime against a defenseless Justin Eddy, who had lost his stick seconds before, and RPI finally shook off pesky Quinnipiac 5-4 in an unforgettable opening-round game of the 51st RPI Holiday Tournament Friday night.

"Thank God we won," said coach Dan Fridgen, whose Engineers will take on UMass, a 4-0 winner over Niagara, in the championship game tonight at 7:30.

The game went 90 minutes and 50 seconds, surpassing RPI's previous longest game of 84:45 in the 1985 NCAA semifinals against Minnesota-Duluth.

"I didn't even know he (Eddy) didn't have his stick," said RPI hero Migliore. "I guess that's why he probably went down a little early. That kid played great tonight."

But not quite as great as RPI netminder Kevin Kurk, who shut down the Braves after coming in at 15:51 of the second period.

Eddy stopped Marc Cavosie on three different occasions in the first overtime, but Quinnipiac lost the best chance to end it when Ryan Morton missed an open net with 1:35 left in the first OT.

The Engineers jumped out to a quick 2-0 lead as freshman C.J. Hanafin got his first collegiate goal and Andrew McPherson notched his first of the season. Hanafin took a great feed from Ben Barr in the left slot and whistled it past a defenseless Eddy only 2:40 into the game. McPherson deflected in a shot by Scott Basiuk on a power play at 5:15 before Quinnipiac's Ryan Olson tipped in a right circle drive by Dan Ennis at 12:25 of the first period to cut the lead in half on another power play.

The teams combined for five goals in the second period before it ended in a 4-4 tie. Special teams failed the Engineers for the second time when Morton stole the puck in the RPI end, skated around in front of the net and caught goalie Nathan Marsters out of position for a short-handed score at 2:44 to tie it at 2.

RPI regained the lead at 9:42 on a wrister from Jim Vickers outside the left circle on another power play. Olson tied it for Quinnipiac at 13:28, then the Braves took their first lead 1:23 later on a rebound by Morton that sent Marsters to the bench in favor of Kurk.

The Engineers tied it at 17:49 on Carson Butterwick's score from the left slot, and nearly took the lead in the closing minutes. Steve Munn missed a wide-open net in close, then Vickers blasted a shot off the crossbar before the wild middle period ended.