TROY, N.Y. — Riley Bourbonnais started the game with his first collegiate goal and finished with a hat trick, leading Rensselaer to a 6-1 win against No. 2 Union on Friday evening at Houston Field House. The victory — the second consecutive win for the Engineers against their arch-rivals — improved RPI’s record to 2-5-0 and 1-0-0 in ECAC play, while the Dutchmen drop to 5-2-0 overall and 0-1-0 in conference action.
RPI put up two goals in the the first and second periods to take a 4-0 lead before Union got on the board. Bourbonnais got the Engineers on the board first at 7:43. After taking an assist from Chris Bradley, Bourbonnais flipped the puck into the net past Union goalkeeper Colin Stevens. Later in the period, Jared Wilson scored his first collegiate goal, carrying the puck through the slot and shooting near side for the score at 15:58. Drew Melanson and Mark Miller picked up assists on the tally.
Bourbonnais netted his second of the night at 5:10 of the second when he picked the puck up in the right circle, carried across the slot and shot glove side past Stevens. Freshman Viktor Liljegren scored his second goal of the season at 17:03 of the second on a power play, as Lou Nanne passed the puck from behind the net to Liljegren, who was directly in front of the Union net.
Bourbonnais competed the hat trick with an unassisted goal in the third. After Union got on the board at 4:24 with a score from Mike Vecchione on the power play, the Engineers won the ensuing faceoff and Bourbonnais immediately took the puck to the net for the goal. Nanne wrapped up the scoring for Rensselaer at 7:36 of the third. Drew Melanson passed the puck down the slot where Nanne was waiting to put it past backup Union netminder Alex Sakellaropoulos. Miller picked up the secondary assist on the score.
Union, the defending national champions, managed to outshoot the Engineers 25-24, piling on 15 shots in the second after getting outshot 11-2 in the first. The Dutchmen also held a 34-27 advantage in faceoff wins.
Junior goaltender Jason Kasdorf was outstanding between the pipes for RPI, stopping 24 opposing shots. Stevens made 14 saves in the first two periods before being replaced by Sakellaropoulos, who finished with four saves in 22:57.