TORONTO – The Ryerson Rams men’s hockey team kept their
playoff hopes alive while tying the team mark for wins in a season with a 3-2
victory over the visiting Queen’s Gaels on Thursday night at George Bell Arena.
With the score tied 2-2 and nine minutes remaining in the third period, the team’s leading goal scorer Greg Payne (Thornhill, Ont.) would take a pass from defenceman David Searle (Peterborough, Ont.), put a nifty move on a Queen’s defender at the blueline and then fire a shot that squeaked past Gaels goaltender Riley Whitlock for the game winner.
The victory moves Ryerson (13-11-3) into a tie for fifth place in the OUA East and past Queen’s (13-12-2) and Concordia (13-12-2). All three teams have one game remaining in the regular season. The Rams visit Nipissing Friday, while Queen’s hosts the Lakers on Saturday. Concordia will play at Carleton on Saturday.
The 13 victories ties the Ryerson mark for wins in a season set by the 1988-89 Rams, who were 13-12-1. The Rams will also finish this season with a winning record, the first time in 23 years.
The Rams opened the scoring with just over five minutes to go in the opening period on the power play when Greg Riggs feathered a perfect pass to Victor Terreri in the slot. The first-year forward and product of Mississauga, Ont. hammered it past Queen’s Whitlock.
The Gaels would even the score just three and a half minutes into the middle frame while shorthanded. Rams goaltender Troy Passingham (Mississauga) gambled with a poke check but was beaten to the puck by Scott Kenway who went around the sprawled goalie and fired it into the empty net to make it 1-1.
Ryerson had a great chance to get the go ahead goal late in the second with a two man advantage for almost a minute and half. However, Whitlock was solid for Queen’s making several key stops while surrendering few rebounds.
In the third, the Rams went up 2-1 on Greg Riggs (Pickering, Ont.) second goal of the season just 1:20 into the frame. But the Gaels would respond on the power play three minutes later when captain Jonathon Lawrence notched his seventh of the season.
Ryerson was 1-for-6 on the power play, while Queen’s went 1-for-5 with the man advantage. Passingham stopped 20 of 22 shots for the victory, while Whitlock saved 32 of 35 shots for the Gaels.
The Rams face Nipissing Friday night at 7:00 p.m. in North Bay, Ont.