PHILADELPHIA — Five unanswered goals propelled Vermont to get its revenge against Penn State in the second annual Philadephia College Hockey Faceoff as the 5-2 victory was also the Catamounts’ first win of the season.
Vermont coach Kevin Sneddon said the first trip to the Wells Fargo Center was fun, but “we forgot to play.”
“I think for us, we got caught up in what was the event around the event,” Sneddon said. “I think we were shocked there were so many people in the stands.”
Despite some early sloppiness from both teams, they both found the net in the first period.
Penn State was the first team to score when Vermont captain H.T. Lenz lost his footing and crashed into the net. However, the puck beat him to the goal line. Junior Taylor Holstrom was given credit for the goal having been the last Lion to touch it.
Less than two minutes later, Tommy Olczyk got his first goal of the season after the Catamounts couldn’t gain control while on the power play. The end was result was a juicy rebound that left the whole net open for the Penn State captain to tap it home.
The Catamounts pulled with in one just two minutes later when Jake Fallon put a shot past Penn State goalie Eamon McAdam.
Penn State’s penalty problems continued out of the gate in the second period.
For the second straight game, David Glen was given a five-minute major and game misconduct for a dangerous hit to the head of a defenseless player. For the second night in a row, the Lions found themselves with a five-on-three.
“You don’t need Scotty Bowman to figure this one out,” Penn State coach Guy Gadowsky said. “We’ve got to change. We just have to.”
Flyers’ prospect Nick Luukko scored the game-tying goal shortly after the major expired to tie the game after McAdam could not handle an unlucky bounce.
“It was pretty exciting to score at home,” Luukko said. “It was nice to get the goal [that was] big for our team and after that, we took control of the game.”
The West Chester, Pa., native said his mom had invited everyone she knew and that about 60 people came to see him play. What made it extra special was being a Flyers’ prospect from the Philadelphia area, Luukko said.
Meanwhile, McAdam’s period to forget got worse when he couldn’t cover the puck quick enough before Matt White snuck the loose puck past the freshman’s left pad at 9:45 of the middle period.
The Catamounts held the Nittany Lions to just one shot on goal in the second period.
Just under two minutes into the third period, Penn State got its second power play and had three chances. However, Brendan Bradley picked up a loose puck and deked around Mike Thompson and was one-on-one with McAdam. The New York Islanders’ prospect stopped the first shot, but Bradley buried the rebound that came right to him.
Vermont’s fifth goal came when Connor Brickley took a slap shot from the left point that got redirected off the shaft of Bradley’s stick and past McAdam’s catching glove.
Penn State still managed to outshoot the Catamounts with 24 shots on goal in the third period and 34-28 for the game.
Vermont goaltender Mike Santaguida finished the game with 32 saves, while McAdam stopped 23 shots.