RIT's longstanding undefeated streak against Army was bound to end at some point, and it finally did this past Friday, January 30 in front of over 3,000 fans at the Gene Polisseni Center.
The Tigers (9-12-4, 8-7-4 AHC) were going strong right up until the second period, when they fell 3-0 behind Army. This proved to be a blow that the Tigers couldn't bring themselves to recover from, despite some truly remarkable performances from some key players. Ultimately, the Tigers fell 4-2 against Army, fighting bravely right up to the game's final seconds. The game effectively ended RIT's 15 game winning streak against Army that dates back to November 2008.
RIT has been crushing it recently on the penalties front, killing off 26 over the course of the last six games. This past Friday, the Tigers managed to out-shoot Army by an impressive 35-26, holding their own right up to the end by managing 28-15 shots in the last two periods. Both of the Tigers' goals were scored by second year defenseman Alex Perron-Fontaine, who prior to Friday's game had only scored one goal in 44 career games. In addition, third year forward Andrew Miller was plus-2 and fourth year goaltender Jordan Ruby stopped 11 of 14 shots before being pulled and replaced by third year goaltender Mike Rotolo, who stopped all 11 shots sent his way in the remainder of the game.
Army's win, however, was certainly no accident. Throughout the course of the game, the team brought out some great players like Joe Kozlak, who led the team with one goal and two assists. Other goals for Army were scored by Conor Andrle and Blake Box, whose goal is responsible for breaking the Tigers' winning streak. Maurice Alvarez also played a terrific game, providing Army with a goal and one assist on top of a plus-4 rating. Goaltender Cole Bruns won the game's first star, stopping 33 total shots.
The first period got off to a rocky start for the Tigers, as the lone goal was shot by Army's Maurice Alvarez at the 2:44 mark. The Tigers also faced a handful of penalties during the period, but managed to hold off three power play attempts from Army and almost got across one of their own. The second period essentially solidified the Tigers' loss as Army climbed to 3-0, causing Ruby to get pulled from the net. Ruby's replacement, Rotolo, seemed to put some gas back in the Tigers' tank as they held their own admirably for the rest of the game.