No. 1 Mercyhurst beats Seton Hill 12-9 to win ECAC regular-season championship
GREENSBURG, Pa. -- No. 1 Mercyhurst won 12-9 at No. 6 Seton Hill on Saturday afternoon to improve to 14-0 and claim the first Eastern College Athletic Conference regular-season championship with a 7-0 mark. The Lakers will host the ECAC tournament May 3 and 5 at Tullio Field.
After the Griffins (12-2, 6-1 ECAC) scored first, the Lakers answered. Ten seconds after SHU's goal, Mitch McAvoy assisted on a Brian Scheetz goal. Zac Reid scored a little more than six minutes later to give Mercyhurst a 2-1 edge. Mercyhurst had a strong second quarter, as McAvoy won the opening faceoff and scored seven seconds in to make it 3-1. At the 10:06 mark, Scheetz scored. Reid then found Scheetz for his third goal at the 6:38 mark to further stretch the lead. Seton Hill scored to slow the run, but Jake McAndrew followed with an assist to Brady Heseltine for a goal with 5:59 remaining in the half. Deven Alves scored next to put the visitors ahead, 7-2. Matt Delmonico scored twice for the Griffins, but Reid came back with a goal with 52 seconds to play, sending the Lakers into the half with an 8-4 advantage.
Mercyhurst possessed the ball for almost five minutes to start the second half, but came away empty. Seton Hill quickly took advantage, scoring twice in 28 seconds to get within 8-6. Trevor Vargo hit Brandon Thomson for a goal at the 1:20 mark to maintain control for the Lakers.
In the fourth period, the Seton Hill scored first. However, Alves assisted on a McAndrew score and then Vargo found Heseltine for a goal with 6:07 showing on the clock. Seton Hill scored two consecutive goals to make it 11-9 with 2:59 left, but McAndrew sealed the win with a goal from Reid at the 1:54 mark.
Reid led with two goals and two assists, while Scheetz had a hat trick. McAndrew recorded two goals and an assist and Alves had a goal and a helper. Heseltine scored twice and Vargo dished out two assists. McAvoy had a goal, an assist, and six ground balls. Michael Grace made nine saves in goal. The Lakers outshot SHU 41-29 and won 13 of 24 faceoffs.
The Lakers will play host to fourth-seeded Wheeling Jesuit at 11 a.m. ET Friday in the ECAC tournament. Seton Hill and Lake Erie will square off in the other semifinal at 2 p.m. ET. The winners will then play at noon ET May 5.