Philadelphia – Drexel scored the last three goals of the game to erase a two-goal fourth quarter deficit and defeated St. John's, 10-9, in a non-conference game at Vidas Field. Robert Church scored three goals and had three assists as the Dragons evened their record at 7-7.
Drexel fell behind 9-7 in the fourth quarter after squandering a three-goal lead early in the game. St. John's Ryan Fitzgerald broke the 7-7 tie with an extra-man goal with 10:31 to play in the game. The Red Storm won the face-off and increased its lead when Terrence Leach set up Harry Kutner for his fourth score of the contest at the 9:58 mark. The Dragons responded right away as senior Kyle Bergman, playing in his final home game, scored an unassisted goal with 9:01 left to play. The Dragons wasted little time and tied the game less than a minute later with an Aaron Prosser goal. Drexel won the ensuing face-off, and in the scramble for the loose ball in the Red Storm's end, Church came up with the ball and set up Brendan Glynn, who went in one on one with St. John's goalkeeper Jeff Lowman. Glynn took advantage of the opportunity and scored what proved to be the game winner with 7:54 left in the game. It was Glynn's 20th goal of the season. The Red Storm would have its opportunities in the final seven minutes, but Mark Manos came up with three saves down the stretch. Drexel's defense also came up big as Dana Wilber forced a turnover with under two minutes to play and Matt Dusek picked up the ground ball to gain possession. The Dragons then played keep away in the final minute, aided by a St. John's penalty with 33 seconds left.
St. John's (7-6) trailed 7-5 midway through the third period after a pair of Church goals broke a 5-5 tie. The junior put Drexel ahead at the 9:26 mark of the quarter when he fired home a shot after a feed from Ben McIntosh. Just 47 seconds later, Church scored his 24th of the season. The Red Storm answered back with four straight goals, two in the third and two more to start the fourth quarters. Ryan Fitzgerald started the Red Storm rally with the first of his two goals. In the final minute of the quarter, Kevin Cernuto tied in with an unassisted goal.
The Dragons played an inspired first quarter and opened up a 4-1 lead. Bergman, Glynn, McIntosh and Church scored for the Dragons, while Cernuto had the only Red Storm tally. Drexel had 12 of its 32 shots in the first quarter and forced five Red Storm turnovers. The second quarter went the other way as St. John's controlled play and outshot Drexel, 10-3. Kutner scored two goals in the second period as the Red Storm cut the deficit to 4-3. Kieran McArdle opened the third quarter with a goal just 18 seconds in as St. John's capitalized on a man-up opportunity to tie it at 4-4. Drexel's Andrew Vivian and Kutner exchanged goals to make it 5-5 before Church scored back-to-back goals.
The Red Storm outshot Drexel, 35-32, and had three more ground balls than the Dragons. Each team committed 13 turnovers. Manos made 13 saves in his final home game for Drexel. Lowman had 12 saves, including six in the third quarter. Deven Thomas won 10 of 17 face-offs for the Dragons and had a team-high six ground balls.
The game marked the final home appearance for seniors Bergman, Drew Collins, Max Crockett, Chris Farquhar, Manos, Kevin Stockel, Brian Teuber, Frank Tufano, and Wilber.
The Dragons open the Colonial Athletic Association Championships on Wednesday night. Drexel will play at Penn State in the CAA semifinals. The winner will face UMass or Towson for an automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament.
Posted: April 30, 2012 - 9:28 AM
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