Penn State men’s hockey opened its series with Arizona State on Friday night, picking up a resounding 7-0 victory.
Evan Barratt’s first two collegiate goals opened the scoring on the evening and Sam Sternschein recorded his first goal in Hockey Valley. After the freshmen finished scoring, Brandon Biro, Nikita Pavlychev, Erik Autio, and Nate Sucese added late consolation goals to put the icing on the cake.
Chris Funkey got the start in goal for the Nittany Lions, recording 15 saves in the victory for his first win of the 2017-18 season.
How It Happened
The first period began with a flurry of offense from Penn State, but the Nittany Lions could not break through Arizona State’s defense and goaltender in the opening frame.
Late discipline issues saw Penn State take three penalties, but the penalty kill stepped up in a big way to keep things knotted at zero until the end of the first period. Despite having three power play opportunities, Arizona State could not outshoot the Nittany Lions in the first period; shots on goal finished 10-7 in favor of Penn State.
Penn State finally found a goal nine minutes into the second frame via the power play. Freshman Evan Barratt’s first goal in the Penn State blue & white opened the scoring in tonight’s game. The Chicago Blackhawks‘ third-round draft choice in 2017’s first was assisted by Chase Berger and Trevor Hamilton.
Barratt wasn’t done there though; he doubled his goal total for the season 8:33 after opening the scoring to give his team a two-goal lead. Trevor Hamilton picked up his second assist of the evening on the goal and Andrew Sturtz recorded the secondary assist.
The night of first career goals continued 6:37 into the third and final frame. Sam Sternschein, who is filling in for Denis Smirnov while he battles an illness, scored his first career goal after an assist from Brandon Biro to extend Penn State’s lead to three. The goal changed momentum and essentially sealed the victory for Penn State.
The Nittany Lions continued to pour it on late in the third period; goals from Brandon Biro, Nikita Pavlychev, and Erik Autio, and Nate Sucese extended Penn State’s lead to seven and put the finishing touches on an excellent game.
Player Of The Game
Evan Barratt | Freshman | Center
Tonight was a milestone night for freshman center Evan Barratt. His first two goals of his NCAA career opened the scoring and gave Penn State a lead it would not look back from.
He fired five shots on Arizona State’s goal throughout the evening and was active on both ends of the ice all night. Barratt missed a long stretch of games early in the season, but tonight, he burst onto the college hockey scene and showed Penn State’s fans why he was drafted in the third round by Chicago.
The Nittany Lions will finish their series against the Sun Devils tomorrow night at 9:05 p.m. back at the Gila River Arena in Glendale.