The No. 20-ranked Penn State men’s hockey team improved to 3-0 with a 6-3 win over Mercyhurst at Pegula Ice Arena on Thursday night.
Ture Linden scored just seven seconds into the game to give Penn State an early lead. Mercyhurst answered later in the period with a goal by Ryan St. Onge, and the teams exchanged goals to create a 2-2 score.
Goals by Kevin Wall and Dylan Gratton put Penn State up 4-2, and although Mercyhurst cut it the lead to one, goals by Christin Berger and Dylan Gratton’s older brother, Tyler, finished off the scoring.
Linden also assisted Wall’s goal to give hims seven points on the season to lead the Lions. Wall and Ryan Kirwan each have three goals. Kirwan, Linden and Wall and defensemen Jimmy Dowd Jr. are tied for the team lead with a plus-6 rating.
“Well Waller you know, he took a really big step the three weeks, to a month of the season last year,” head coach Guy Gadowsky said. “If you’ve watched the game our team played by far the best hockey on the road against Ohio State and that we played all year. That was the best hockey I have seen him play and to be honest with you, he was thinking like he could have had, I think he had a few points but it wasn’t about that. He just He did all the little things right.”
Lions goaltender Liam Souliere made 20 saves in the win. Souliere is now 2-0 on the season after finishing the 2021-22 season with a 7-7-1 record. Freshman Noah Grannan started Penn State’s other game this season.
Penn State out-shot Mercyhurst, 51-23. The Lions killed both penalties, something that Gadowksy stressed after the opening series against Canisius, but were 0 for 3 on the power play with a shorthanded goal against on Thursday.
Penn State plays Mercyhurst again Friday night at 7 p.m., this time on the road in Erie.