Forester senior goaltender George Argiropoulos made 19 saves and recorded his second career shutout in Friday's 6-0 victory over Adrian College, the seventh-ranked team in the nation.
Lake Forest wasted little time getting on the scoreboard as freshman forward Will Lebel scored from the high slot off of a turnover at 2:23 for his third score of the season. The Foresters held Adrian to just two shots on goal in the first 20 minutes while producing 10 of their own.
There was back-and-forth action with just one penalty in the middle frame, which went against the Foresters at 14:51. Despite his team down a man, sophomore forward Troy Nelson took advantage of a breakaway opportunity 40 seconds into penalty kill with assists going to freshman forward Josh Giacomin.
The Bulldogs came in leading the Northern Collegiate Hockey Association with three victories when trailing after 40 minutes of play this season but they would not get their fourth on Friday. With the Foresters going on the power play at the 6:04 mark of the final stanza, senior defenseman Ryan Kruss roofed one over the goaltender's glove, giving him his fourth goal of the season, third on the power play. The score was assisted by junior defenseman Connor Duncan and senior forward Bron Loiselle.
Just 2:02 later freshman forward Josh Giacomin made a highlight reel move, splitting the defenders after gaining the blue line and beating the goaltender low blocker for his second goal of the year. He was assisted by sophomore forward and fellow Calgary, Alberta, native Kyler Magus.
The Bulldogs went on their third power play of the game at 13:15 of the third period and decided to pull the goalie, which led to the Foresters' fifth score of the day. Sophomore defenseman Mark DerManulian collected the puck in his own zone and flung it the length of the ice, making it a 5-0 advantage.
It did not take long for the Grosse Point, Michigan, native to register his first two-goal game as he followed up a great 1-on-2 rush generated from Nelson and beat the goaltender for the final score of the contest. Both of DerManulian's goals were assisted by Nelson, who finished the game with a goal and two assists, his third multi-point performance of the year.
When asked about the win Forester Head Coach Pat Kelliher commented, "Adrian has always been a top team in our league, especially now with North and South Divisions. We know that's kind of the route to the playoffs so this gives our guys some confidence that, not only can we play with them, but we can beat them. This was a really good team win."
The Foresters improved their overall record to 7-5-4 and NCHA mark to 5-2-2. Adrian fell to 10-5-1 overall and 5-3-1 in NCHA play. The Foresters moved into first place in the NCHA South Division standings and will host Trine University Saturday night at 6:00.
by Cam McGuire