BURRILLVILLE, R.I. – Nichols held off No. 14 Trinity (Conn.) for a 5-3 non-conference triumph on Sunday at Levy Rink. With the win, the Bison improved to 8-4-0 and defeated the Bantams for the first time since January 24, 1981. Trinity (5-2-1) held an 11-0 advantage since — including a 10-0 spurt prior to a 20-year hiatus in the series that resumed last season.
Senior Zach Kohn recorded a pair of assists to move him past Nichols Hall of Famer Dave Delmonico ’78 to take third place with 80 helpers. In the process, the forward also tied 2007 Nichols Hall of Fame inductee William Valintas ’78 with 111 points.
First-years Frank Butler and Paul Prescott each added a goal and an assist as sophomore Kyle Shapiro notched the game-winner for the Bison. Rookie Tyler Beasley and sophomore Chris Gularte each found the back of the net while senior captain Wil Brown, sophomore Brett Jackson and junior Greg Strootman each recorded a pair of helpers.
For the Bantams, senior Jordan So scored a goal and notched an assist while rookie James Burt and sophomore Andrew Tallet were each credited with two assists. Senior Chris Menard and sophomore Jackson Brewer rounded out the goal scoring with one apiece as sophomore Michael Flynn pitched in with a helper.
Nichols sounded the siren just 21 seconds into the game as Beasley sent home a rebound on a shot initially taken by Brown as Kohn recorded his first assist of the afternoon. Shortly after returning to the ice, Butler scored on a breakaway at 7:53 to put the Bison on top 2-0. Gularte increased the Nichols lead with a shot from the blue line following a faceoff with 38 seconds left in the frame.
Menard broke up the shutout at 15:26 in the second with a one-timer off a pass from So.
Each team found the back of the net in the final period. So made it a one-goal game at 8:06 before Shapiro and Prescott’s scored at 10:19 and 13:30, respectively. With 5:43 left, Brewer brought the game within two. At 18:49 the Bantams pulled their goaltender but were unable to capitalize.
Bison rookie goaltender Alex Larson turned away a game-high 29 shots in his third victory (3-2-0) while junior Ben Coulthard slipped to 4-2-1 in a 28-save game.
Trinity scored three power play goals on 10 chances while Nichols finished 2-for-5 with extra personnel.
“That was a big win for our program,” head coach Kevin Swallow said. “Beating a ranked opponent is always huge. It’s a good way to start the second half of the year. Hopefully we can build on this with some very good teams coming up.”