Hockey: Providence outlasts Benet 5-4
By Pat Disabato email@example.com January 24, 2014 11:04PM
Updated: February 27, 2014 6:44AM
If Benet has nightmares regarding Providence for a few nights, it’s understandable.
The Celtics defeated the Redwings not once, not twice, but three times in a matter of six days.
The most recent victory came Friday night at a packed Arctic Ice Arena in Orland Park as Providence exploded for four goals in the third period, then had to hang on to post a 5-4 win.
“It shows the unity and strength we have as a team,” Providence forward Rich Yusa said. “Benet is a good team and we’ve played a lot of games the past two weeks, but we haven’t let fatigue set in.”
Providence and Benet squared off in a tournament Sunday and Monday, with the Celtics earning 3-1 and 5-3 wins, respectively. Friday’s win was more important as it improved Providence’s Catholic League record to 19-0-1. Two more wins and the Celtics will go undefeated in the league.
Benet (14-5-1) is the only team in the league to have at least played Providence to a tie, 4-4, on Oct. 19.
“That’s been one of our goals, to go undefeated,” Providence forward Ben Brandau said. “We want to fulfill that goal.”
The game was tied entering the third period before Providence exploded for three goals in a 1:46 span to grab a 4-2 lead. Matt Iaciancio, Jordan Ernst and Jake Dillman all found the back of the net. Iaciancio’s goal at the 12:16 mark gave the Celtics a short-lived 2-1 edge. Benet countered just eight seconds later, as Tom Feldman beat goalie Ryan Iaciancio to tie the game at 2.
After Dillman and Matt Iaciancio scored, Brandau made it 5-2, flying down left wing and slipping a shot past Benet goalie Kevin O’Hara with 4:59 to go.
Benet, though, didn’t go down without a fight. Paul Wagner and Conor Coyne scored eight seconds apart to close to within 5-4 with 3:08 left.
“We thought we had it in the bag,” Brandau said. “We let down a little bit.”
The Celtics, however, thwarted Benet’s comeback hopes.
“To beat any team three times in six days is kind of crazy,” Providence coach Nick Iaciancio said. “I didn’t think we had any chance after the way we played the first two periods.”
Yusa scored the game’s first goal, rifling a snap shot top shelf at 10:41 of the first period. However, Feldman scored 21 seconds later to tie the game at 1.
Pat Francis recorded two assists for Providence.