By Thomas Becker
The St. FX X-Men handed the UPEI Panthers their sixth loss in a row, as they used a first half penalty shot to propel them to a 3-0 win.
The league's top goal-scorer, Dan Hayfield made it nine goals on his season with the shot, while teammates Ben Herringer and William Warren added goals late.
The Panthers (1-6-2) are now backed against a wall and have to win their final three games if they plan on playing in the playoffs, and even then, it doesn't guarantee a spot.
For the X-Men (6-2-1), it's a welcome return to the win column after a disappointing 4-0 loss to the Dalhousie Tigers at home.
"We've been in a bit of a poor streak, so to come in and not only win, but have a good performance is good because we've got three tough away games coming up," said Hayfield, who was named Subway Player of the Game. "Our aspirations are to a get top-2 finish, catch a bye in the playoffs and go from there."
UPEI goaltender Brett Strba did everything he could and made a series of diving and sliding saves in the first 20 minutes to keep the game scoreless.
But he was in tough in the 36th minute after teammate David Waniko committed a foul in the box leading to the penalty shot. Up stepped Hayfield, who fired it in the lower left corner to put his team ahead 1-0.
"It was good to go into halftime a bit more relaxed," Hayfield said. "UPEI away is always a tough game because they're very solid and to get that goal relieved the panic."
St. FX added to their lead in the 78th minute when Quincy Meh sprinted to the box from the right and crossed it to Herringer, who timed his run perfectly for the goal.
Warren then closed it out in extra time with a goal of his own, which was assisted by Hayfield.
"This is a huge win, not just for the points, but for the momentum moving forward," Hayfield said.
The Panthers are back on the road where they'll take on the Acadia Axemen (Oct. 20) and Dalhousie Tigers (Oct. 21).
Photo Credit: Janessa Hogan