Newark, Del. — The playmaking ability of the University of Delaware Division 2 men’s hockey team’s (8-1-0) second line has proven a key component of the Blue Hens’ early-season success. On Friday night (Oct. 12) at the Fred Rust Arena, Ryan Johnson, Devin LeBlanc and Shane Moran collectively had a hand in four of Delaware’s goals in a 7-0 rout of a second-year Stevenson (0-4-0) team.
Johnson opened the scoring for the Hens with a power-play tally 4:08 into the first period with a net-front redirect from Ryan Lowe and LeBlanc. Jeremy DeWit and Mike Leather contributed similarly in the second period, posting up directly in front of Mustangs netminder Pat Schena and beating him from close range.
Up 3-0 through two periods, Delaware’s productivity escalated in the third as the Stevenson side, only 12 skaters deep, began to show signs of fatigue. Captain Alec Rankin connected 30 seconds in with a top-shelf laser from the left dot, only to be followed up by an Andrew Marciniak put-back in the third minute via Moran and LeBlanc assists. After Johnson earned his second goal of the game amid a net-front scrum in the eighth minute, what was quite possibly the prettiest goal of the night belonged to Moran.
With 1:27 remaining in regulation, the right winger stole the puck in the Stevenson zone, carried it into the low slot, deked, and finished with a top-shelf backhand goal to ice the Hens’ 7-0 win.
While held without a goal, LeBlanc accounted for three assists, while Moran, Dylan Knox and Ryan Lowe had two helpers apiece.
Delaware goalie Eric Birnberg (3-0-0) stopped all 18 shots he faced, while Schena (0-1-0) recorded 48 saves on 55 shots in defeat.
The Blue Hens travel to Athens, Ohio next weekend for a two-game set against the Ohio University Bobcats.