By Devin Jones
Ryerson’s men’s hockey team lost in 6-4 against the Western Mustangs Saturday night at the Mattamy Athletic Centre.
Mustangs forward Zach Harnden scored a shorthanded with three minutes left in the third period, to give Western the lead and ultimately hold on for the win.
“Shorthanded goals kill you,” said Rams head coach Graham Wise. “It definitely takes some momentum out of your sails.”
Western opened the scoring with a quick goal early in the first period, off the stick of forward Matt Paltridge, but Ryerson would fire back with a goal of their own, from right-winger Michael Fine.
Fine would add another before the first period ended, giving the Rams a 2-1 lead.
Rams goalie Adam Courchaine left the game after the first due to back spasms, and was subsequently replace Courchaine.
The Rams kicked off the second period with a goal from left-winger Domenic Alberga, giving the Rams a 3-1 lead.
Mustangs captain Steven Reese would tally his first of three points on the night, with a goal at 8:48 in the second, making it a one goal game.
Halfway through the second Mustangs centre Matt Clarke and Rams goalie Troy Passingham left the game after Clarke on took a charging penalty that resulted in a game misconduct.
“I thought I was going to have to throw on the pads,” said left-winger Jamie Wise. “I used to play net way back in the day, and everybody was looking at me, I was getting a little nervous.”
Courchaine, who had been dealing with back spasms sustained earlier in the game, would tough it out and play between the pipes for the rest of game.
Mustang forward Stefan Salituro scored to tie the game at three apiece, but at the end of the second the Rams would go up 4-3 courtesy of right-winger Dustin Alcock.
Although the Rams were leading heading into the third, the third period belonged to Western.
Mustangs center Adam McKee tied the game at 4-4, and a high sticking double-minor from Rams Taylor McCarthy plus a holding call on Alcock would set the Mustangs up with a six minute power-play.
“We had to kill six minutes in the third, which is unfortunately, the nature of the game,” said coach Wise. “But the team showed great character in doing it.”
While the Rams would fend off the six-minute onslaught, Harnden scored shorthanded, stemming from a Mustangs boarding penalty. Harnden would score an empty net goal for the cherry on the pie to hand the Rams their seventh loss of the season.
The Rams play their next game on Thursday Nov. 7 against the University of Ontario Institute of Technology Ridgebacks at 7:30 P.M in Oshawa, Ont.