TORONTO — For a third straight season, the Ryerson Rams men’s hockey team are heading to the playoffs.
The Rams clinched a spot by defeating the Laurier Golden Hawks, 3-2 on Saturday evening at the Mattamy Athletic Centre at the Gardens.
“That’s huge,” Mark Corbett, a Rams defenceman said post-game. “The standings are incredibly tight and we needed a big win to clinch the playoffs and I think it takes a little bit of stress off of us.”
Ryerson (16-10-0) got the scoring started at 6:47 of the first period when Victor Terreri banged home his seventh of the season.
The score would remain 1-0 until just a minute into the second period whenJamie Wise scored his 21st goal of the year to extend the lead to 2-0. Domenic Alberga and Michael Fine picked up assists on the play. Wise and Alberga sit tied for second in the CIS in scoring with 45 points each.
Laurier (9-15-2) would answer back a few minutes later on the powerplay when Joe Vanni notched his third of the season.
Due to injuries, Laurier only dressed 12 skaters on Saturday night.
Mitch Gallant would re-direct a shot from the point half-way through the third period to cap off a solid individual performance to put Ryerson back up by two.
With under a minute remaining in the third, Laurier refused to go down without a fight. Brent Vandenberg scored his third of the season and it was 3-2.
Despite a Laurier timeout, they could not muster a comeback to equalize the game.
Troy Passingham made 19 saves to earn his 10th win of the year.
Duncan Long was solid all night for Laurier despite giving up three goals on 33 shots and suffering the loss.
“I thought we were pretty average,” Johnny Duco, Ryerson’s assistant coach said. “We found a way to battle it out and get the two points and at this point we’ll take anything.”
With the win, Ryerson snapped a three game losing streak and now sit tied for third in the OUA West with 32 points.
“I think we just tried to be a little bit more relaxed,” Corbett said on what his team did differently. “Just trying to have fun out there, we’ve been a little bit down on ourselves and we only had one game this week so we had five practices to get ready for it and hopefully this turns the tides.”
Ryerson now has two games remaining on their regular season schedule and resume OUA action on Wednesday, Feb. 12 when they host the Toronto Varsity Blues at 11:30 a.m.