Maryland forward Jack Brackett scored two goals to help lead the visiting Black Bears to a 4 – 1 win over the New Jersey Titans. It was the Titans first game in 33 days.
The Black Bears took a 1 – 0 lead with 8:43 remaining in the opening period. With play along the near side boards at center ice, Maryland’s defenseman Cam Gaudette dumped the puck at the top of the Titans blueline where it was picked up by Brad Zona. As Zona started to skate through the neutral zone, he went to pass the puck to Leventa Keresztes but it was intercepted by Brackett. The forward, who was playing in his first game with the Black Bears, gained the line and took a wrist top from the top of the faceoff circle that beat New Jersey netminder Louden Hogg long side.
Just over a minute later, Evan Werner scored on a one-timer to tie the game. With play inside the Titans zone, Matt Doyle lobbed the puck deep into the Black Bears zone as Nick Seitz out hustled the Maryland defender for it. As Seitz was starting to fall in the near side corner, he had the wherewithal to make a centering pass out front to Nate Boak who make a touch pass to Werner on his left and Werner buried the biscuit past Black Bears goalie Michael Morelli for his team high tenth goal of the season.
Luke Mountain gave the Black Bears a 2 – 1 lead with just 25 second remaining in the first period. After Maryland won the draw deep inside their own zone, the puck went to defenseman Jack Hillman who lobbed the puck over the outstretched arms of Tyler Nasca at the point and it was picked up by Luke Mountain at center ice. As Mountain entered the Titans zone along the near side boards, he cut across the slot with Anthony Mollica on him, but he took a shot that beat Hogg for his seventh goal of the season.
After a scoreless second, Hunter McCoy extended the Black Bears lead to 3 – 1. After icing was waived off, Aden Bruich picked up the puck behind the Titans net and to the left of Hogg. Bruich circled behind the cage and passed the puck to McCoy at the nearside faceoff dot and McCoy beat Hogg glove side.
Brackett scored an empty net goal with thirty-six seconds remaining to close out the scoring.
Hogg stopped 19 of 22 shots while Morelli turned aside 25 of 26. Click here for the box score. The two teams will close out their weekend series tonight at the Middletown Sports Complex with a puck drop at 7:05 PM.