The OPRF Hockey Club rallied from a 3-1 third period deficit and scored four unanswered goals to edge Geneva 5-3 in a closely fought Metro West opener last weekend.
After a scoreless first period, Mike Slovak got the Huskies on the scoreboard just 17 seconds into the second period, taking a pass from Dean Rogers and burying the puck in the back of the net. Kevin Meegan also picked up an assist on the play.
Geneva evened the score with a power play goal just two minutes later and added another power play goal near the end of the period to take a 2-1 lead. Geneva outshot the Huskies 16-11 in the period, but goalie Bob Grayson kept the Huskies in the game with several key saves, including a spectacular glove save on a puck that was headed for the corner of the net.
Geneva pushed its lead up to 3-1 at the beginning of the third period when the Huskies mishandled the puck at their own blue line, and Grayson was unable to stop the resulting breakaway. At that point, the Huskies dug in and began to chip away at the Geneva lead. At the 10:43 mark, Andy Dirgo, skating in from left wing, one-timed a Jack Brofman pass from behind the net to cut the lead to 3-2. Jim Minaghan also assisted on the play.
At the 6:08 mark, a Geneva player was hit with a double minor penalty, giving the Huskies the opening they needed. With 5:24 to go, Rogers tied the game with a power play goal, assisted by Matt McDonnell. Just seven seconds later, Slovak took the face-off, skated through the short-handed Geneva defense, and beat the Geneva goalie to give the Huskies a 4-3 lead.
Grayson (38 saves in 41 shots) and the Huskie defense protected its lead the rest of the way. The Huskies added an insurance goal with 55 seconds remaining on a perfectly executed 2-on-1 by Matt McDonnell (goal) and Minaghan (assist), set up by a Joel Meyerson pass.
The Huskies are back in action with two Metro West games this weekend. They face off against Naperville North on Friday (9:15 p.m., at All Seasons Arena in Naperville) and open their home season at Ridgeland Commons on Sunday (6:15 p.m.) against the Neuqua Valley Wildcats.
A press release contributed to this report.