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No. 16 Penn State Hockey Sweeps No. 17 Clarkson With 5-1 Victory

No. 16 Penn State men’s hockey (2-0-0, 0-0-0 Big Ten) completed its first series of the 2018-19 season with a sweep against No. 17 Clarkson at Pegula Ice Arena after a 5-1 victory on Friday night.

Five different forwards scored goals for the Nittany Lions. Aarne Talvitie’s first NCAA goal stood up as the game winner, and Chase Berger, Brandon Biro, Nikita Pavlychev, and Alex Limoges also found the back of the net.

Peyton Jones was excellent in goal, making 35 saves in his first start of the season.

How It Happened

Goaltender Peyton Jones made his first start of the season, and he got off to a fast start with a huge kick save. The Golden Knights’ attacker cut to the net and fired a shot across Jones’ body, but the junior was there with his right pad to keep things knotted at zero early on.

Clarkson got the scoring started 3:33 into the game off of a 2-on-1 rush. Grant Cooper collected a pass from Nico Sturm and buried a wrist shot past Jones to give his team a 1-0 lead.

The Nittany Lions quickly responded through Alex Limoges’ first goal of the year. The sophomore scored off of a faceoff win by Evan Barratt with 15:15 to play in the first period.

Finnish freshman Aarne Talvitie buried his first NCAA goal just 62 seconds after Limoges’ first of the year. He jammed the puck in off the rebound of a Nikita Pavlychev shot. Captain Chase Berger picked up his first point of the season with the secondary assist on the goal.

Alex Limoges and Cole Hults each took minor penalties during the first period, but both infractions were killed off after a flurry of Golden Knight chances. 

Sam Sternschein took the first minor penalty of the second period for slashing, but Penn State’s penalty kill stayed perfect and didn’t concede a goal. The Nittany Lions used the momentum gained on special teams to extend their lead to two, as Nikita Pavlychev tucked in a rebound to make it 3-1 Penn State with 14:40 to play in the second.

Brandon Biro extended the lead to 4-1 with 6:47 to play in the second period. Nate Sucese fed him a perfect breakaway pass after Nikita Pavlychev forced a turnover in the neutral zone. The alternate captain now has goals in consecutive games to kick off the season, and his most recent one gave Penn State a three-goal cushion entering the final 20 minutes.

Jones was rock solid through two periods, stopping 20 of the 21 shots he faced in the first 40 minutes. He saw the puck very well thanks to an even more solid effort from his six-man defensive unit, which consistently filled passing and shooting lanes and made plays.

Penn State was outshot in the second period, but bounced back to re-claim the lead in SOGs in the third as Clarkson tried to mount a comeback. The Golden Knights’ closest attempt to a goal was an Aaron Thow wrist shot that rang off the crossbar with just under five minutes to play in the third.

Player Of The Game

Peyton Jones | Junior | Goaltender

Jones conceded a goal early on in tonight’s game, but bounced back and put on a show in his first start of the season. He made 35 saves on 36 shots against Clarkson’s attack to pick up his 41st win as a Nittany Lion.

What’s Next

Penn State will continue its eight-game homestand to open the season next weekend with a series against Niagra. Puck drop is set for 7 p.m. Friday and 3:30 p.m. Saturday.

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About the Author

Mikey Mandarino

Mikey is a senior majoring in journalism and Onward State's Sports Editor. He grew up in Bedminster, NJ and is way too obnoxious about all the best things his home state has to offer. Mikey loves to play golf, but he sucks at it because golf is hard. If you're dying to see more hockey/golf content on your timeline, you can follow Mikey on Twitter @mikey_mandarino. Send all hate mail, death threats, and your vote for the best chicken parm in State College to [email protected]

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