ROCHESTER Once again the Clarkson University mens hockey team finds itself leaving an arena after playing to a tie.
The Golden Knights tied the Rochester Institute of Technology 3-3 before a sellout crowd of 2,100 in a nonconference game at Ritter Arena on Friday night, giving Clarkson its fifth tie in 12 games this season.
Clarkson (2-5-5 overall) had an early 2-0 lead and outshot the Tigers 44-29, including a 31-13 advantage in the second and third periods.
But the Golden Knights struggled on faceoffs, going 25-49 against RIT (2-7-3).
Clarkson was missing six regulars, including captain Ben Sexton, to injury and dressed only 17 skaters, with just two forwards on its fourth line.
I thought we competed really hard, Clarkson coach Casey Jones said. We had a hard time scoring at times there tonight. I thought we battled really hard. They were a hungry team. I thought we deserved a better fate tonight.
The Golden Knights seized the early lead by scoring twice while shorthanded and both goals came on breakaways shortly after the RIT power plays began.
Simon Bessette scored his second goal of the season at 6 minutes, 27 seconds of the first period, putting a shot between the legs of RIT goalie Josh Watson.
Pat Megannety made it 2-0 when he scored his fifth goal of the year on a shorthanded breakaway at 17:16 of the opening period.
RIT answered with 37.5 seconds left in the opening period with a goal from Ben Lynch on a shot that went off the back of one of the pads of Clarkson goalie Greg Lewis, leaving Clarkson with a 2-1 lead after the first 20 minutes.
RIT had another penalty late in the second period, but this time instead of giving up another shorthanded goal, the Tigers tied the score 2-2 when Mike Colavecchias shot rang off the post and went in at 17:54.
The Tigers took their only lead of the game early in the third period as Brad McGowan put in the rebound of a shot by Ben Lynch at 4:39. Lynch was falling to the ice and had to fight off a Clarkson defender to get the shot that led to the rebound goal.
But Clarkson responded just over a minute later on another breakaway goal.
Bessette moved through a few defenders, took a shot just outside the crease and Matt Zarbo put in the rebound at 5:40 to end the scoring.