By Josh Veltrie
Consecutive hat tricks and senior leadership led Rider’s ice hockey team to victories over Millersville to open the season as the Broncs won 8-5 on Friday, Sept. 25, and 6-3 on Saturday, Sept. 26.
Freshman forward Frank Garvey recorded a hat trick and three assists in the first game of his career. Senior forwards Tom D’Aurizio and Nick Savaiano had three assists apiece, with D’Aurizio also adding a goal in the win.
“It was very exciting playing in my first collegiate hockey game,” Garvey said. “Doing well was a huge bonus, but I was just happy to be out there with such a good group of guys. Tom and Nick are great players; they always know where to be, and they’re great leaders. Their leadership is one of the reasons why the team is playing so well.”
Rider came out strong with five goals in the first period, and it looked like it was going to be an easy opening game as they were up 5-2 at the start of the second period. Garvey scored all three of his goals in the first period while sophomore forward Andrew Michael and junior defenseman Mike Romono had a power play goal apiece.
“We could have run away with the game in the first period, but we let Millersville hang around, and they made us pay for that,” D’Aurizio said.
Millersville and the Broncs exchanged a goal each in the beginning of the second period, but at the end, Millersville cut into Rider’s lead, scoring two goals and narrowing the deficit.
“Penalties have always been an issue with this team, and I felt that was one of the reasons Millersville was able to hang around with us for as long as they did,” Savaiano said. “When it came down to it, we just wanted to win the game more than Millersville.”
It appeared that way as the Broncs scored the only two goals of the third quarter, making the final score 8-5. D’Aurizio had a power play goal with the assist going to Garvey, and sophomore Connor Dragone fired in his second goal of the game on a power play. Junior forward DJ Nork compiled his second assist.
Sophomore Chris Dudo started the game as the goalkeeper, allowing five goals in the first two periods. Junior Joe Nalbone finished in goal, not allowing anything past him in the final 20 minutes.
Rider ended up spending 20 minutes in the penalty box, while Millersville had a total of 24 minutes.
The Broncs picked up right where they left off on Saturday, scoring the first two goals of the game before Millersville tied up