College Hockey:
Lattery Scores Twice, Western Michigan Tops Dartmouth, 5-4

Broncos Net Three Power-Play Goals

— New night, new hero for the scorching Western Michigan Broncos.

A night after left winger Steve Rymsha had a hat trick, freshman center Dana Lattery netted two goals — including the game-winner — as the Broncos completed a two-game sweep of visiting Dartmouth with a hard-fought 5-4 triumph Saturday night at Lawson Arena.

“What’s fun for us right now is that different people are contributing for us offensively,” said Western Michigan coach Jim Culhane. “Tonight, Dana Lattery gets two, and Brent Rumble and Jeff Campbell each get one.

“We have five wins in a row under our belt now, so we’ll take it.”

Where a two-goal night from Lattery and a five-goal showing overall would have been more than enough Friday night, every Bronco goal counted against the much-improved Big Green this time around.

In the end, the power play made the biggest difference for the Broncos (6-1-1). They finished 3-for-10 on the night and 4-for-18 on the weekend, bringing their season success rate to 25.8 percent.

“There’s a lot of creativity out there,” Culhane said of the power play. “There is some structure to it, but we let those kids be as creative as possible. They’re given some guidelines and parameters to look at, but they make things happen out there. Right now, things are clicking.”

Dartmouth (0-2-0) played very aggressively after losing 5-0 Friday night.

The Big Green outshot the Broncos 40-27 and finally connected on the power play, finishing 1-for-7. The penalty kill and overall defensive play continued to suffer, but Gaudet has a positive outlook heading into league play next weekend.

“I thought we played a tremendous hockey game from the drop of the puck to the final buzzer,” said Big Green coach Bob Gaudet. “We showed intensity, energy and pride out there. I was proud of our guys.

“As I told them after the game, if we can play with this intensity and passion during the season, I know good things will happen. And that’s what I expect. I don’t expect this to be an aberration.”

The Big Green opened the scoring less than two minutes into the game when Jason Costa connected for his first career goal. After blueliner Pascal Lalonde won a neutral-zone battle for the puck, Jamie Herrington winged it to the freshman Costa, who dumped it past goaltender Jeff Reynaert (36 saves) for the 1-0 lead.

After that, however, Western Michigan’s dangerous attack took control.

The Broncos beat rookie goalie Darren Gastrock (22 saves) on the power play twice in a five-minute span, as defenseman Josh Akright logged his first career lamp-lighter and Campbell one-timed home a Mike Bishai pass to give their team a 2-1 lead. Western Michigan stretched its lead to two with Rumble goal late in the period.

The Big Green cut the deficit to 3-2 early in the middle frame when sophomore Kent Gillings fired in his first career goal, also Dartmouth’s first power-play netter of the season. The Broncos reclaimed their two-goal advantage soon after with a Lattery man-advantage goal, but Dartmouth made it 4-3 midway through the period when flu-ridden Chris Taliercio snapped a Frank Nardella pass to the top of the net.

The teams traded goals in the third period, as Lattery netted his second of the game before Dartmouth forward Chris Baldwin cut it to 5-4 with his first of the season.

The Big Green battled for a few near-misses toward the end, but the game essentially ended when Mike Turner was whistled for a cross-checking penalty with just over a minute remaining.

Both teams return to action next Friday night. Western Michigan will pay a visit to Niagara, while the Big Green opens ECAC play against Brown.

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  • BenAL18

    Weird. Another week of Paula really going out on a limb and picking split series except for the obvious pick against the worst team. How about you use your so called expertise and make an actual pick instead of splits. If the results went the way of your picks then every team in the ccha would end up .500. Want some picks? WMU and Lake State will take 5 of 6 points in their respective series while your beloved Wolverines will sweep ND and take 6.

    • Paula Weston

      Really, BenAL18?  Would you NOT call splits in this league?  And have you seen the standings?  Three teams are at .500; three more are between .500 and .600 and one more is just below .500.  That’s the way this season has been. 

      I don’t get any credit for calling a split in a given weekend when teams do split but win on nights opposite of what I’ve called.  I do take losses for both of those games.  
      Four points separate the third-place team from the eighth-place team in this league going into this weekend.  I’d say that splits are the norm, not the exception. 

      • BenAL18

        Anyone can sit here and pick the norm but you’re supposed to be the expert so I would expect more then just picking split series every weekend. I haven’t looked very closely and don’t plan on doing so but I would venture to guess you also pick the home team in your series splits. After years of reading but never commenting I’m more then sick of watching you make picks that anyone who looks at the standings can pick. I’d also love to see just once you pick a national “mid major” program such as a NMU, WMU or Lake State over a ND, Michigan, MSU or OSU. I know it’s not the “norm” but who would watch a game if the “norm” always proved true. The fact that you still have ND ranked above WMU after WMU just swept ND is laughable just like the poles.

        • MSUStu

          You want her to give an expert opinion, but complain she doesn’t go out on a limb and picks sweeps. Seems to me an expert opinion means she needs to tell you how it is, which she is. By the way, she is 4-0 so far this weekend going 4 for 4 on Friday night. Also, if you knew anything about the CCHA, I think you’d realize that none of the series are home and home – the CCHA doesn’t have too many of those anymore since they fell to 11 teams. You complain that she isn’t picking mid-majors to win, yet I see her picking LSSU to win at LSSU (which LSSU hasn’t won in East Lansing in 16 years – going 0-18-3 now in their last 21 games in East Lansing). And she picked Ferris State to beat Ohio State in Columbus. Seems to me you’re looking rather dumb right now, and Paula is looking spot on – like an expert.

          • MSUStu

            That should be LSSU winning in East Lansing – where they haven’t won in 16 years. That’s going out on a limb (one that I hope proves to be wrong).

          • MUAlum

            Bravo…  it’s always nice to see someone put people in their place.  I’ll be the first to admit that I’ve disagreed with some of Paula’s posts in the past, but if I’m going to make a post – I usually try not to sound like a fool.  Anyone who readily admits they haven’t fully investigated an issue, but will make broad conclusions and assumptions, well that just speaks for itself.  If you’re bitter because she picked ND over WMU despite the sweep – that’s fair (I would tend to agree), but unfortunately you lost all of your credibility before that.  Polls are perception, and perception is reality.  So the reality is people (and not just Paula) think that ND is better than WMU.  If you disagree, fine.  But why do you insist on such destructive criticism?

    • gstud

      Western Michigan taking 5 of 6 points?  Miami is have an off year but they are still the class of the CCHA playing at home.  Try Miami takes 6 points.

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