St. Bonaventure University

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​UB stuns Bonnies with goal in dying seconds at AAU College Hockey Nationals

Mar 08, 2024


With St. Bonaventure (19-5-1 overall) needing only a tie to advance to the national semifinals, the University at Buffalo scored with just 25 seconds left in the game to crush the Bonnies’ dream of a national title.

UB added another score with just 5 seconds remaining in its 3-1 victory to clinch Pool C in the Division I AAU College Hockey National Tournament Friday evening in West Chester, Pennsylvania.

The teams both ended up 2-1 in pool play, but the No. 6 Bulls — who defeated SBU, 5-3, two weeks ago in the Upstate New York College Hockey League semifinals — advanced to Saturday’s national semifinals because of the head-to-head result.

The Bonnies would have won a three-way tiebreaker with UB and Quinnipiac, but the Bobcats (1-2) lost to Auburn (1-2) earlier Friday.

After a scoreless first period, the third-seeded Bonnies took a 1-0 lead 3 minutes into the second period on a rocket from Jake Spina, who was set up by nice clearing pass from his own zone by David O’Donoghue.

UB then took a mindless roughing penalty crashing the Bonnies’ goal celebration, but the ensuing power play turned ugly. A mishandled puck off a faceoff the Bonnies had won led to a UB breakout. Matt Tullo beat Kyle Karoleski high on the blocker side to tie the game just a minute later.

The game remained scoreless until Brandon Licursi scored with 25 ticks left. Knowing it needed to win to advance, UB had pulled its goalie a minute earlier to gain the man advantage.

The Bonnies outshot Buffalo, 44-29, but UB goalie Craig Kunz only let one shot slip past.


About the University: The nation’s first Franciscan university, St. Bonaventure University is a community committed to transforming the lives of our students inside and outside the classroom, inspiring in them a lifelong commitment to service and citizenship. Out of 167 regional universities in the North, St. Bonaventure was ranked #6 for value and #14 for innovation by U.S. News and World Report (2024).