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FGCU Club Hockey Drops First Game in Over Two Months With Split Against Miami University

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Hannah Frazier @capturedbyhannahf

On Jan. 26 and 27, the FGCU Division II club hockey team looked to continue their 12 game winning streak, having not lost a game since November. The Eagles welcomed the 20-6-1 Miami University RedHawks, who entered the weekend ranked fifth in the most recent ACHA Southeast rankings. FGCU ended up splitting the weekend against Miami as the Eagles captured game one 4-3, while the RedHawks struck back with a 6-3 win the next day.

The Eagles started the first game hot as defenseman Grant Bondy punched in the first goal in less than two minutes. This was Bondy’s first goal of the season, as he has only started in eight games up to this point, and it gave FGCU an early 1-0 lead.

Miami University was able to drive up and down the ice to no avail, as they missed every opportunity they had at a goal early on. A chance to score presented itself on a breakaway opportunity, which was missed. This was followed up by a penalty shot for the RedHawks that they could not capitalize on. The first period ended with the Eagles up 1-0.

Momentum continued in FGCU’s favor as the Eagles scored two goals in the first three minutes of the second period. The first of these goals came 30 seconds after the faceoff when graduate student and forward Wyatt Engelmann scored the Eagles’ second goal of the game with an assist from captain and senior forward Spence Van Tiem. Sophomore forward Shayne Tomlinson scored the following goal to close out the scoring run. This extended the Eagles’ lead to three goals at 3-0.

As the period continued, the Eagles’ dominance slowly diminished as the RedHawks began to match their pace. Miami was able to control FGCU’s pressure to respond with a goal and to put an end to their scoreless drought before the second period came to a close. As time ticked down, the Eagles would be called for two penalties during the RedHawks turnaround.

The final period saw the Eagles trying to hold onto the lead. They scored early yet faltered, allowing Miami University to get back into the game. Senior forward Jack Cohen scored the Eagles’ fourth goal of the game to bring the score to 4-1.

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Miami went on a scoring run, obtaining two goals in just over a minute. This brought the score to 4-3 with FGCU leading and over half of the last period left. Luckily for the Eagles, they were able to fend off the RedHawks for the rest of the game. This included the RedHawks pulling their goalie in an effort to score the tying goal in the final minutes. 

Although FGCU exited the first game with a 4-3 win, Miami had an electric third period to put pressure on the Eagles at the end of the game. The Eagles got away with the victory due to early mistakes that hindered the RedHawks from scoring until the second period. FGCU needed to prepare for what Miami could create if they wanted to sweep the weekend.

Hannah Frazier @capturedbyhannahf

As the second game started, the Eagles got off to a rough start immediately as the RedHawks scored an early goal just 14 seconds into the game. This set the tone of the game as the Eagles were outmatched by the RedHawks throughout the night.

FGCU was able to rally back towards the end of the first period to tie the game at 1-1 with a goal from sophomore forward Jake Court. During the first period, both teams would be penalized twice. This showed how aggressive both of the games were over the weekend. However, this aggression later hurt the Eagles in their attempt to get back into the game.

The Eagles lost the game in the second period. FGCU allowed Miami University to open the period by scoring three goals in a row. Sophomore forward Dylan Castello scored a goal for the Eagles to cut the deficit to one goal before Miami scored again to close out the period. The RedHawks ended the period with a 5-2 lead over the Eagles.

As the third period began, neither team was able to score until eight minutes in. This was when Miami University scored their final goal of the game to strengthen their lead to 6-2.

The Eagles needed a big comeback with 12 minutes left to get back into the game, but it never came to fruition. They went on to score one more goal courtesy of Tomlinson to close out the game but that was it. The RedHawks went on to win the second game of the weekend 6-3 over the Eagles.

After the weekend of play, FGCU’s record moved to 25-3-1 on the season. The Eagles play their final regular season games on Feb. 2 and 3 against the Northeastern University Huskies.

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About the Contributor
Jeffrey Hrunka, Assistant Sports Editor
Jeffrey Hrunka is a junior double majoring in communications and journalism with a concentration in public relations. Jeffrey is from Fort Myers where his interest in sports journalism originated after falling in love with the world of motorsports. When he’s not working for Eagle News, he is usually spending time with friends, watching the New York Giants lose, or chilling in the pool.

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