PLATTSBURGH, N.Y. — The Colby power play won the consolation game of the Pepsi Cardinal Classic on Saturday. The White Mules went 5-for-10 with the extra attacker on the way to a 7-2 victory over Hobart.
Hobart came out with a very aggressive forecheck right from the opening faceoff, which gave Colby fits in its own zone early on.
“We’ve seen other teams knock Colby off its game by being aggressive and we wanted to do that right from the outset,” said Hobart coach Mark Taylor.
The strategy paid off for the Statesmen early in the period. Hobart’s leading scorer, Greg Reynholds, skated in from the top of the circle, and flipped the puck in to the net at 2:23 for the power-play goal.
Colby got a power play of its own just two minutes later, when Mike Higgins sent a slap shot in from the left faceoff dot that found that back of the net at 4:43 to tie the score 1-1.
Colby went on a 5-on-3 power play late in the first period, and took advantage of it to grab the lead. Sean O’Grady skated around a Hobart defender to the left faceoff dot and wristed the puck in for the goal at 17:29.
The penalties continued to rack up and Hobart got its own 5-on-3 advantage in the waning minutes of the period. The Statesmen continued into the second period with the two-man advantage, and converted just 37 seconds in. Eric Christianson sent a big blast from the top of the slot that found the back of the net to tie the game at 2.
Hobart and Colby skated even for most of the second period, until the White Mules took the lead for good at 15:14 with the first even-strength goal of the game. Fred Perowne tucked the puck in the net after a prolonged scramble in front of the Hobart net.
The game got chippy after that, and Colby took over offensively. “We came out to work in the beginning of the game, but getting behind rattled us and then we just didn’t play very smart,” said Taylor.
Colby opened the flood gates early in the third period, and it was all downhill from there for Hobart. Perowne and O’Grady played catch across the top of the slot, before Perowne finally slapped a shot into the goal 42 seconds into the third period for the power-play tally.
Bobby Nagle chipped in Colby’s fifth goal from in close, also on the power play, at 3:48. This signaled the end of the night for Hobart netminder Tony Rodriguez.
James LaLiberty scored the White Mules’ sixth goal at 6:04 of the third period with a slap shot right off a faceoff deep in the Hobart zone.
Brian Chisholm finished off the scoring for the evening at 17:32. He intercepted a muffed Hobart clearing attempt and backhanded the puck into the net.