V-Reds triumph in first Grant·Harvey Centre matchup

V-Reds triumph in first Grant·Harvey Centre matchup
The UNB Varsity Reds men's hockey team got back into the win column with a 6-1 victory over their cross-campus rivals, the St. Thomas University Tommies, Friday night at the Grant·Harvey Centre.
           
After over 50 years of playing in the Lady Beaverbrook Rink, Friday's matchup marked the first in the new Grant·Harvey Centre.
           
Six minutes into the first period, after STU's Colin Martin was sent off for hooking, UNB capitalized as Thomas Nesbitt netted his fourth of the season from Daine Todd and Colby Pridham.
           
The V-Reds outshot STU 10-1 in the first period, while controlling most of the puck possession.
           
Tyler Carroll opened the scoring midway through the second period with a shot from the right of STU net minder Jonathan Groenheyde, beating the rookie goalie top shelf for his fourth of the year. Ben Shutron kept the play alive, gloving the puck down at the blue line, and sent it over to Bryce Swan, who then fed an open Carroll.
           
Three minutes later Nick MacNeil also scored his fourth of the year off a heads-up pass from Cam Braes, while Swan picked up his second as a V-Red four minutes later with help from Cam Critchlow and Daine Todd.
           
With sound defence, UNB held the Tommies shotless in the second period, outshooting STU 28-1 through 40 minutes.
           
After stopping 29 shots, Groenheyde left the game at 5:13 in the third period. Groenheyde, who was named third star in the game, was dehydrated and began cramping, according to head coach Troy Ryan.
           
Justin Collier replaced him and stood strong in his third appearance this season, but after Mike Reich was sent off for elbowing, Geordie Wudrick beat Collier with his second of the year.
           
Eight seconds later St. Thomas got on the board with Chris Morehouse breaking Travis Fullerton's seven-shot shutout, jamming the puck in off the side of the net.
           
UNB finished strong however and capped off a 4-for-7 night with the man advantage when Chris Culligan picked up is second point on the night with a wide-open wrist shot to the left of Collier. Carroll started the play with back-to-back toe-drags in the slot but lost the puck off a STU poke check. The puck went right to Marc-Antoine Desnoyers who fed Culligan for his second goal of the year.
           
11 different V-Reds players picked up points in the win, with Swan, Braes, Todd, and Culligan earning multi-point nights.
           
Head coach Gardiner MacDougall said tonight they were looking to be a "hungry hockey team," and after a good week of practice the efforts showed up on the score sheet.

"It was good execution from the group," said MacDougall. "We had six defensemen and four lines and contributions from a lot of people, and that's how we have to be. We need to be a collective unit."
           
UNB had their strongest power play outing of the year with a 57.1% success rate. Their last strongest was 50% against St. Francis Xavier on Oct. 20th, and again against STU in the season opener.
           
Carroll, who had five of UNB's 45 total shots, said their power play was something that was worked on all week.

"We switched things up a bit tonight and it paid off," he said. "It was a good effort by us and a good start to the weekend."
           
UNB, now 6-3-0, and in second place in AUS standings, are back on the road tomorrow night against the University of Prince Edward Island (5-3-1). Puck drop is at 7 p.m.