AMHERST, Mass. – Amherst College used a pair of goals and an assist from Aaron Deutsch '15 to help the Jeffs secure a convincing 5-1 victory over Colby College in Friday evening's NESCAC men's hockey game at Orr Rink.
With the win, Amherst improves to 8-2-2 on the season, 4-2-0 in conference action, while Colby moves to 3-7-1 overall, 0-5-2 in league play.
In an evenly contested first period, Amherst broke the scoreless deadlock when Topher Flanagan '16 scored at the 7:56 mark to give the Jeffs a 1-0 lead. Keenan Hodgson '18 and Conor Brown '16 assisted on the score. With 4:32 remaining in the opening period, Colby's Phil Klitirinos netted an unassisted marker to level the game at 1-1 heading to the first intermission. Amherst held a 13-11 shot advantage in the frame.
In the second stanza, the Mules went on the power play twice but could not get through the stout Amherst defense as the Purple & White killed off both man-advantages in terrific fashion, not allowing a shot on target.
At the 10:34 mark of the second period, first-year forward David White blasted a shot that sailed into the top left corner to give Amherst a 2-1 lead. Dan Merenich '15 and Patrick Mooney '18 assisted on the bullet goal. After Hodgson won the ensuing faceoff, Deutsch fired a rocket into the top left corner from just inside the Mules' blue line just six seconds later to give the Jeffs a 3-1 cushion.
Playing with a two-goal lead, the Purple & White took advantage of a too-many-players-on-the-ice penalty at the 10:47 mark. Just one minute into the power play, senior co-captain Mike Rowbotham scored his fifth goal of the season to set the lead at 4-1. Deutsch and Thomas Lindstrom '18 provided the helpers on the goal. At the 13:53, mark, Deutsch potted his second goal of the game, this one also on the man-advantage, as Rowbotham and Brendan Burke '16 added assists on the game's final goal.
Amherst goalie Danny Vitale '15 (2-1-2) turned away 27 shots in the winning effort, while his Colby counterpart, Jordan Nathan (2-1-1) made 35 saves in the loss. Vitale made 10 of his saves in the first 20 minutes of action, while Nathan made 14 stops in the second frame to highlight the effort.
White, Lindstrom, Andrew Fenwick '15 and Tyler Granara '18 finished with a team-high four shots on target each for the Jeffs, while Mario Benicky and Tyler Lingel registered five shots on goal each in the losing effort for the Mules.
Amherst is back in NESCAC action on Saturday, Jan. 9 when it hosts No. 13 Bowdoin College at 3 p.m. at Orr Rink.