The first career start for Niagara men's hockey team freshman Colby Drost proved to be a triumphant one as the Purple Eagles mounted a third-period rally Saturday night in Central New York to earn a 2-1 win over national No. 16 Colgate at Starr Rink in Hamilton.
Marc Zanette and Mike Benedict scored in the final 6:04 as Niagara won for the first time in six starts this season. Drost finished with 42 saves.
The win is Niagara's first over a ranked team since beating No. 8 Bemidji on March 12, 2010. With the win, NU (1-3-2) avenged Friday night's 7-6 overtime loss to the Red Raiders at Dwyer Arena in the opener of the home-and-home set.
"This is one of the courageous wins we've had as a program in a long time," said Niagara coach Dave Burkholder. "Coming into Colgate's rink after a tough outcome last night, just the character and pride we played with says a lot about the guys in the room."
The teams skated to a 0-0 tie through 40 minutes. Colgate (4-2-1) broke through before its home crowd at 8:05 when Thomas Larkin scored on the power play.
*In Colorado Springs, Colo., Doug Beck's goal with six seconds left helped Canisius tie Atlantic Hockey Association host Air Force, 3-3. Torrey Lindsay and Kyle Gibbons also scored for the Griffs (1-2-2, 1-0-1), who rallied from a 3-1 third-period deficit. Goalie Tony Capobianco made 45 saves for Canisius.
*The Niagara women skated to a 4-4 tie with Vermont (1-4-4) at Gutterson Fieldhouse in Burlington, Vt. Niagara just missed making the trip home with a win as Vermont's Erin Wente scored the tying goal on the power play with 23 seconds left.
NU (4-5-2) is unbeaten in its last four and five of its last seven after a 0-4 start. Kelsey Welch, Jessica Hitchcock and Kathleen Bortuzzo each had a goal and an assist for Niagara.