BURLINGTON, Vt. — BURLINGTON, Vermont —
Down 3-1 and with a playoff berth on the line, Vermont exploded for five unanswered goals in a wild nine-goal second period and went on to defeat St. Lawrence, 8-4, Saturday to cap both teams’ regular seasons.
The win, combined with Colgate’s 3-0 loss to Rensselaer, puts Vermont in the ECAC playoffs that begin next weekend. The Cats will play at top-seeded Clarkson. St. Lawrence, meanwhile, finished second in the league, and will take on Union.
Vermont, 12-16-2 overall and 8-12-2 in the league, scored the game’s first goal at 17:48 of the first period when J.F. Caudron scored his 16th of the season from 25 feet out. Graham Mink started the play with some excellent work along the boards, and then Ryan Cox kept at it between the circles before gaining control and leaving the puck for Caudron, who made no mistake, ripping a snapshot past St. Lawrence goal Sean Coakley.
St. Lawrence, 16-12-4 overall and 13-6-3 in ECAC play, evened the score at 1-1 at 1:03 of the second period when Ryan Glenn stepped in from the point and beat Vermont’s Andrew Allen with a slapshot from 20 feet out. Robin Carruthers started the play with a rush down the right side, taking a shot that Allen saved. Charlie Daniels then shot on net, and the long rebound went out to Glenn, who was all alone and walked in for the shot.
Carruthers made it 2-1 St. Lawrence at 4:24 of the period when he buried a rebound on the power play. Matt Desrosiers took the initial shot from the point, and Carruthers took the long rebound and beat Allen cleanly from the slot.
The Saints made it 3-1 just 80 seconds later when Desrosiers scored on an assist from Rich Peverley. At that point, Vermont changed goalies, with sophomore Shawn Conschafter replacing Allen.
Vermont stormed back with five unanswered, with Bryson Busniuk scoring at 10:39, Ryan Cox scoring at 11:46, and Patrick Sharp scoring at 12:44. Busniuk’s goal was his 1oth of the season, while Cox notched his ninth and Sharp gave Vermont a 4-3 lead with his 10th goal of the campaign.
The Catamounts kept the pressure on, and Jeff Miles scored his sixth goal of the season shorthanded after SLU’s Jeremy Symington misplayed the puck at the side of the crease. Symington came in at 13:08 of the period to replace Sean Coakley, who gave up four goals and recorded 19 saves.
Sharp then notched his second of the night on the power play, tipping in a shot from Martin Wilde at the point at 16:41, before St. Lawrence made it 6-4 on Alan Fyfe’s goal at 18:25, but Vermont regained a three-goal lead on Graham Mink’s pretty goal at 4:24 of the third. Ryan Cox assisted on the goal, Mink’s 14th of the season.
Vermont added to the lead on John Longo’s goal at 13:25 of the third, with Chris Hills getting the lone assist.
Allen made 16 saves and gave up three goals for Vermont, while Conschafter stopped 10. Symington recorded 10 saves and gave up four goals for St. Lawrence, and Tim Hall stopped three in 6:35 of play in the final period.