Wednesday, January 9, 2019

By Bethany Drysdale

Tempe, Arizona – The UNLV Rebels began the spring semester on the road tonight at Oceanside Ice, facing the Arizona State Sun Devils. There was no rust on the Rebel skates as Chase Torontow scored the first goal of 2019 on a power play. Cody Williams recorded the assist, by making the ASU penalty kill group play out of position, setting up a pass to Torontow. The first period belonged to UNLV, as they went full throttle for the full 20 minutes. Pax Malone tallied the next two goals in the first, with a centering pass from Cody Williams with 7:15. Then Malone capitalized on an Arizona turnover when he scored with an assist from Joe Kaszupski and D’Andre John at 1:44 left. Arizona played down a man for much of the first period with back to back penalties.

Back on the ice for the second, the Rebel scoring machine continued to drive the puck into the Arizona zone. The early penalty kill by Jonah Pearson and Jordan Rea helped keep the Sun Devils off the scoreboard. Arizona lacked continuity in their power play, and never got anything going to change the momentum in their favor. It was more of the Rebels taking it to the next with shots on goal. At 4:07 left in the 2nd period, Paxton Malone scored his 3rd goal of the game, giving him the hat trick. UNLV ended the period with 29 shots on goal to ASU’s 21. Giesbrecht was brilliant all night with his consistent saves, swallowing up any rebounds.

Back on the ice for the 3rd period, the UNLV express delivered more goals and more saves by Giesbrecht. Jonah Pearson added one at 18:04 with assists from Rea and John to make the score 5-0. That line had several shots on goal and finally got rewarded. Two minutes later at 16:08, Zach Lawson lit the lamps for the 6th of the game, assisted by Angelos Tsalafos and John Moeller. The consistent offense from the Rebels and turnovers from ASU, tallied a 7th goal by Eric Williams, assisted by Lawson and Tsalafos at 11:27. Arizona picked up their game in the final 10 minutes and broke up Giesbrecht’s shutout, when they scored 6:43. The final score was 7-1, UNLV win, giving the Rebels a 12-4 record. The loss drops the Sun Devils to 7-18 on the season.

This was an action packed game and great start for the 4-game Arizona road trip. Every game matters for the Rebels at this juncture in the season. The higher they can climb in the rankings, the better their position going into the ACHA Division 1 championship tournament. The Rebels will play again Thursday night, at Oceanside Ice Arena, 7 pm pacific time.

Follow the Rebels on social media to find the YouTube link for the live game broadcast.

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UNLV’s goal scorers in order

First Period

UNLV – Chase Torontow (3rd goal this season) – Assist – Cody Williams

UNLV – Paxton Malone (9th) – Assist – Cody Williams

UNLV – Paxton Malone (10th) – Assists – Joseph Kaszupski, D’Andre John

Second Period

UNLV – Paxton Malone (11th)

Third Period

UNLV – Jonah Pearson (3rd) – Assists – Jordan Rea, Zach Lawson

UNLV – Zach Lawson (4th) – Assists – John Moeller, Angelos Tsalafos

UNLV – Eric Williams (4th) – Assists – Zach Lawson, Angelos Tsalafos

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UNLV goalie – Ben Giesbrecht – 7-1-0, 2.00 gaa, 89.1% save percentage