BURLINGTON, Vt. — Vermont’s power play came alive with four man-up goals, and goaltender Shawn Conschafter made 45 saves as the Catamounts held on for a 5-1 win over No. 14 Harvard in their ECAC opener at Gutterson Fieldhouse on Friday night.
Vermont (1-3-0, 1-0-0 ECAC), got on the board early in the first period when John Longo scored on the power play at 4:15, with Gerard Miller and Brady Leisenring getting assists. Miller started the play with a well-directed shot from the right point. Leisenring tipped the puck to the back boards, where Longo corralled it and stuffed it home past Harvard goalie Will Crothers. The goal was Longo’s team-leading third of the season.
The Catamounts got another power-play goal at 16:57 of the first when Scott Mifsud made a great play on the goal line, kicking the puck to his stick and then feeding Leisenring in front for the goal. Longo also assisted. The goal was Leisenring’s second of the season, and Mifsud picked up his first collegiate point with the assist.
Harvard (1-2-0, 1-2-0), made it 2-1 in the final minute of the first period when Tim Pettit scored on the power play, steaming down the middle of the ice with Brett Nowak and beating Conschafter low to the stick side. Freshman Andrew Lederman also picked up an assist on the goal, Pettit’s second of the season and the 16th of his career.
The Catamounts answered at 12:56 of the second when Bryson Busniuk took a nice lead pass from Jeff Miles and beat Crothers high to the stick side. Miller started the play with a smart pass up the middle out of the Vermont zone, and Miles feathered a pass to Busniuk, who had gotten behind the Harvard defense down the left wing. The goal was Busniuk’s first of the year.
Vermont took a 4-1 lead at 11:43 of the third when Oriel McHugh blasted a shot from the point on the power play that appeared to go through Crothers’ pads. Busniuk and Miles assisted on the goal, which came with Vermont captain Ryan Cox jamming up the front of the crease.
Jeff Miles scored his first of the year late in the game for the final margin. Patrick Sharp assisted.
Crothers stopped 22 shots for Harvard.