Any concern that Buffalo would be rusty after three weeks of was quickly erased when the Bull sprinted out to a 2-0 lead in game one of this weekend's pair against Kent. They went on to down the Flashes 7-2 at home and then took the second game with a gutsy 1-0 decision on the outdoor ice in East Aurora.
In the Northtown center on Friday Matt Notaro opened up the scoring two and a half minutes in to the first period. A little more than a minute later Gavin Evancho got the first of his three goals on a power play to put UB up 2-0 just four minutes into the game.
At the 14 minute mark Kent pulled to within a goal when Chance Taylor took a pass and from Jon Buttitta, putting it passed Tyler Stark. On the night Stark would face 39 Kent shots, surrendering two goals en route to his seventh win of the year.
Buffalo closed the scoring in the first two minutes later on a Chris Marsack goal, his 6th of the season.
UB took at 3-1 lead into the second but the middle frame belonged to the goalies. Stark stopped all 15 of the shots he faced while his counterpart from Kent, Sky Buller, was 11 of 11 on the shots UB threw at him.
In the third period Evancho started off the scoring with his second goal of the night and Luke Swimline scored an unassisted goal to tretch UB's lead to 5-1. Kent's Andrew Radosevic scored a minute later hoping to start a rally.
Buffalo went back up by 4 on a Dimitrios Koutsomitis goal assisted by "Bang Bang" Bobby Lang and Willie Sanchez. 90 seconds later Evancho scored his third goal off a Bobby Lang pass. On the night Lang assisted on four of the Buffalo goals.
The official score book for the game notes only 10 minutes in penalties but the radio broadcast gave me the impression that the game was quite chippy and players from both teams spent a ton of time in the box.
The same teams faced off outdoors Saturday in East Aurora. The game featured less fireworks and the chippiness of Friday's game had passed. Bobby Lang fed Matt Notaro who then slid the puck past Zachary Nowak's right side.
The Flashes tested Dylan Arnold in the first period, peppering the Buffalo netminder 19 times, which amounted to nearly half of the shots Kent would manage in the matinee game. Both goalies would play perfect after the first and Notaro's goal held up as the game winner.
UB is now 16-4 with a league record of 4-2. They are ranked 17th in the nation and will be back to ACHA play January 9th against Slippery Rock.