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Niagara hockey finishes sweep at AIC

Niagara’s (5-20-3, 5-15-2 Atlantic Hockey) has struggled all season to win a game, let alone two in a row.

Saturday, the Purple Eagles put two victories back to back with a 4-3 victory over American International (5-22-2, 5-16-2 AHA) in the Olympic Ice Center in West Springfield, Mass.

Niagara scored four goals in the first 34:10 of the game, then held on for a sweep of the series with the Yellow Jackets.

Sophomore forward Stanislav Dzakhov assisted on the first goal by sophomore Derian Plouffe and scored the second in the opening period as Niagara got off to a strong start. A power-play goal by freshman forward Johnny Curran made it 3-0 at 2:15 of the second period and senior defenseman Matt Dineen scored at 5:50 of that same period for a 4-1 lead.

Austin Orszulak scored twice for AIC in the third period but Niagara was able to hold off the Yellowjackets for the final 4:16 to preserve the victory. Junior Jackson Teichroeb made 34 saves in goal for Niagara, including six in the final period.

Next for Niagara will be a home-and-home series against Mercyhurst on Friday at Dwyer Arena and Saturday in Erie, Pa. The Purple Eagles dropped a pair of 3-2 games to the Lakers when they met Jan. 8-9.