ST. BONAVENTURE, N.Y. – Jake Tomsik's goal with just over 10 seconds remaining in regulation sent Quinnipiac to a 5-4 victory in a tightly-fought defensive battle Saturday afternoon under sunny skies at the Marra Athletics Complex.
The contest was Bona's first true home game in 744 days.
Defense was the name of the game Saturday with just nine total goals scored on the day including only two in the final quarter.
Mark Belles scored unassisted with 12:09 to play, tying the game at 4-4.
The Bonnies (1-3, 0-3 MAAC) created several chances to break the deadlock and take the lead during the fourth, but Quinnipiac keeper Nick Dimuccio made multiple impressive saves to preserve the tie.
Belles nearly found the back of the cage with just over three minutes to play, but was denied by Dimuccio. With just over a minute left, a shot attempt from Austin Blumbergs was blocked in traffic before another effort by Sean Westley sailed just wide.
That gave the ball back to the Bobcats, and following a timeout with 35 seconds on the clock, Steven Germain worked the ball behind the net, dishing to Tomsik who finished with a top-shelf shot for the game-winner.
The Bonnies made a last-ditch effort to force the game to overtime as Austin Holley won the ensuing faceoff and ran down the field, firing a shot just past the post. Bona had one last effort, and Brett Beetow placed a shot on goal that was turned away by Dimuccio as time expired.
St. Bonaventure outshot Quinnipiac by a 36-29 margin including 13-7 in the fourth period.
Quinnipiac (1-1, 1-0) took a 3-0 lead early before the Bonnies responded with a long pole goal from Zach Belter off an assist from Daire Newbrough. Sean Westley got the Bonnies within one with a great hustle play to the left of the net, diving for a ground ball then jumping to his feet and evading the goalkeeper with 8:38 left in the first half.
The game went to intermission tied, 3-3, following the second goal of the day from Westley, assisted by Zach Owens, 1:30 before the break.
Tomsik gave the Bobcats the lead with 8:02 left in the third, a score that held for the next 11 minutes of game time before Belles would score for another tie that held until Tomsik's winner.
Bonaventure's defense helped produce 21 Bobcats turnovers and Bonnies goalkeeper Brett Dobson again shined in the cage by making 11 saves as well as registering four groundballs. In addition to his goal, Belter finished with two groundballs and two caused turnovers defensively.
Dimuccio made 14 saves for Quinnipiac.
The Bonnies, who have suffered back-to-back one-goal heartbreakers, return to action next Saturday at home vs. Manhattan.
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