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Golden Knights prospect Jack Dugan leads Providence to title

Updated January 4, 2020 - 11:21 pm

Jack Dugan couldn’t have asked for a better end to his first visit to T-Mobile Arena.

The Golden Knights prospect scored the winning goal in the shootout Saturday after No. 14 Providence skated to a 2-2 tie against second-ranked Cornell in the title game of the Fortress Invitational.

“I hope I gave them a good show,” Dugan said. “It was fun playing out here, and all these people came out to watch. Getting off the ice and people are yelling your name. That’s a new experience for me, so that was a lot of fun.”

Dugan, a fifth-round pick by the Knights in 2017, was named the tournament’s MVP. The sophomore right wing set up the Friars’ second goal in the second period and now leads the NCAA in scoring with 37 points (seven goals, 30 assists) in 21 games.

Tyce Thompson and Parker Ford scored in regulation for Providence (11-5-5).

The game was a rematch of last season’s NCAA East Region final that Providence won 4-0 to advance to the Frozen Four.

Morgan Barron tallied both goals for Cornell (11-1-1), including the tying goal with 1:12 remaining in the third period.

The teams played a five-minute 5-on-5 overtime session with no scoring, followed by 3-on-3 for five minutes.

Friars goaltender Michael Lackey made two saves in the shootout before Dugan’s attempt, then turned away Cornell’s Ben Berard in the third round.

Dugan skated in slowly and wristed a shot past Big Red goaltender Matthew Galajda, then cupped his left hand to his ear as he skated past the traveling Cornell fans on the way to the bench.

“Going back to last year in the regionals, we had a tough game against them, and then for whatever reason, they always bring their fans out to us,” Dugan said. “I knew that they wouldn’t like that too much. I kind of thought of it in the moment.”

Thompson opened the scoring, one of the Friars’ three shots on goal in the first period. Barron answered at 15:42 of the first before Dugan created the go-ahead goal.

He beat a Cornell defender wide along the right wing before threading a pass into the slot for Ford.

“It was a special moment for him,” Providence coach Nate Leaman said. “It was a storybook ending for him. That was pretty nice. It’ll be something that he can always remember in his life.”

Contact David Schoen at dschoen@reviewjournal.com or 702-387-5203. Follow @DavidSchoenLVRJ on Twitter.

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