Everyone is back into the swing of the second half and so it should not be surprising that this past weekend saw a bit of everything in both league and nonconference matchups.
Of course, there were the usual upsets, but also a couple of 0-0 ties, numerous and unique hat tricks from players leading their teams to wins and even an unassisted goal scored by a netminder.
Yup, this weekend had it all and should be a portent of the craziness ahead.
Here’s the East recap:
Curry took a pair of impressive nonconference wins to start off the second half with some great positive momentum. Brett Sinclair earned both wins in goal for the Colonels, making 70 saves in wins over nationally-ranked Plymouth State on Thursday night and Potsdam from the SUNYAC on Saturday. Tyler Vankleef led the way offensively for Curry, potting a pair of goals in each game.
Salve Regina used the same formula on back-to-back nights in producing 5-1 and 5-2 wins over Johnson and Wales and Stonehill, respectively. Deadlocked at 1-1 after the first period of both games, the Seahawks scored four unanswered goals in the middle stanza on both Friday and Saturday to put their opponents away.
Nichols blew 2-0 and 3-2 leads on the road against Cortland in a 4-3 non-onference loss to the Red Dragons, while Endicott went 0-for-8 on the power play and lost to Tufts 6-1 despite outshooting the Jumbos by a 45-30 margin. Brian Brown and Nick Flanagan had a pair of goals apiece, while Nik Nugnes made 40 saves in the win.
Hobart flexed some muscle against nonconference opponents over the weekend, posting a 7-1 win over Geneseo on Friday and backed it up with a 9-2 rout of Brockport on Saturday night. Ben Gamache picked up six points in the two games, while fellow Statesmen forward Nick Bingaman added five points, including three goals in the wins over SUNYAC opponents.
Elmira played the same two SUNYAC opponents on opposite nights and matched Hobart’s success, picking up a 4-3 win over Brockport and a 5-1 win over Geneseo led by Carter Shinkaruk’s hat trick that moves him to 14 goals on the season.
Westfield State won a huge nonconference game on Thursday by taking down nationally-ranked Nichols by a 3-1 score. The Owls couldn’t keep the momentum going on Saturday as they dropped a hard-fought battle to Salem State by a 2-1 score, solidifying the Vikings’ second-place position in the standings.
Casey Shea, last year’s Rookie of the Year in the MASCAC, shook off some first-half inconsistency and scored four goals in Massachusetts-Dartmouth’s 6-2 conference win over Worcester State. The win moved the Corsairs over .500 in conference play to start the second half.
Brandon Bete scored his 13th goal of the season and added two assists for Assumption in their 6-0 win over Western New England. The Ice Dogs outshot the Golden Bears by a 62-36 margin and Nick Commesso stopped all 36 WNE shots for his second shutout of the season.
The Beacons of Massachusetts-Boston stand alone unbeaten and untied atop the NEHC standings following weekend wins over New England College and St. Anselm by 6-5 and 6-4 scores, respectively. The four-point weekend opened up some room from their next nearest competitor as Babson stumbled on the road, collecting just one point in a 2-2 tie with NEC before losing at St. A’s by a 1-0 score. Goalie Shayne Joyce earned the shutout for the Hawks making 25 saves and making Brendon Kerrigan’s first-period goal stand up as the game winner.
UNE picked up a weekend sweep and four big points with one goal wins over Castleton and Skidmore. Dylan Bengston was the hero in Friday’s overtime win over Castleton by assisting on the game-tying goal in the third period before scoring the game winner just 19 seconds into the extra session. All was not lost for the Spartans, who rallied on Saturday for their first league win, downing Southern Maine by a 5-1 score.
The Continentals may be flying under the radar for some in NESCAC but after securing a crucial four points on the road against Colby and Bowdoin, Hamilton’s 8-3-1 record is surely going to garner them some more attention. Evan Buitenhuis picked up both wins in goal for the Continentals, while Robbie Murden scored twice for his team-leading tenth goal in the 4-2 win at Bowdoin on Saturday.
Williams remains at the top of the league standings following two home wins over Trinity and Wesleyan by identical 3-2 and 3-1 scores. Trinity salvaged a split by handing Middlebury its first loss in conference play with a 3-2 overtime win. Sean Orlando netted the game winner for the Bantams on the power play less than a minute into the overtime period.
It was a difficult weekend for most of the teams in nonconference play. Plattsburgh followed up a tough loss at Norwich with a resounding 8-2 win over Canton.
Oswego was stalemated at Utica in a 0-0 overtime tie (one of two 0-0 games on Friday night – Amherst at Bowdoin finished at 0-0) where both Michael Fredrick for Utica and Matt Zawadzki for Oswego were stellar in goal for their respective teams. On Saturday, Oswego fell to Nazareth by a 3-1 score. The Golden Flyers were led by two goals from C.J. Murray.
Justin Selep, Suffolk – the Rams’ forward picked up a rather unique hat trick by scoring one goal on the power play, one goal shorthanded, the game winner and the hat trick goal with an empty net to ensure the 5-3 win over Franklin Pierce on Saturday – not a 5-on-5 goal among the troika for Selep and only one even strength goal total for the Rams in the win.
Tyler Bishop, Massachusetts-Boston – the Beacons’ defenseman helped keep their conference record a clean slate by doubling his season output of goals with a hat trick that included the overtime game winner against New England College. Bishop scored once in each of the first two periods before his game winner just over a minute into the overtime session.
William Pelletier, Norwich – He’s baaaaack! What a difference this repeat biscuit winner is making for the Cadets in just three games back he has totaled 13 points including a third period hat trick in Norwich’s 6-3 come from behind win over Plattsburgh on Friday night. Pelletier added an assist on the tying goal in the second period to make it a four point night.
Danny Liscio, Morrisville – this week finds a pair of bonus biscuits starting with Liscio, whose hat trick led the Mustangs to a 7-5 win over Becker that wasn’t decided until the home team broke a 5-5 tie in the third period for the win.
Ryan Mulder, Castleton – the Spartans’ goalie made 24 saves and helped out his team offensively by scoring an unassisted goal to cap off a 5-1 win over Southern Maine. The empty-netter was the first by a D-III goalie since Alex Larson scored for Nichols in 2013.
WEST WRAP – Brian Lester
St. Thomas and St. Mary’s split their weekend MIAC series. The Cardinals won the opener 4-3 but the Tommies bounced back with a 6-2 win on Saturday. The win by St. Mary’s marked the first time since 2004 that the Cardinals have beaten the Tommies. St. Thomas was 19-0-3 in the last 22 games against St. Mary’s. Martin Gruse scored twice for the Cardinals in the win Friday. Nick Albergo came through with the game-winner with less than three minutes left in the third period. It was a different story Saturday as the Tommies scored three goals in the opening period en route to the win. St. Thomas improved to 8-5-2 overall and to 6-2 in the conference to stay on top of the standings. St. Mary’s dropped to 7-6-2 overall and to 4-3-1 in the MIAC. Connor McBride paved the way as he scored three goals for the Tommies … Augsburg remained in second place in the conference standings with a sweep of Bethel over the weekend. The Auggies topped the Royals 5-2 and 6-4. The Auggies are one of the hottest teams in the league at the moment as they have won five consecutive games. Nate Flynn paved the way in the finale, scoring twice and dishing out an assist as Augsburg won for the eighth time in the last nine games. Augsburg is now 9-4 overall and 5-1 in the conference. Bethel fell to 1-10-1 overall and to 1-5 in the MIAC. Jordyn Kaufer made 20 saves for the win. Flynn has scored 10 goals this season, the fourth-most in the conference. Drew Allen scored a shorthanded goal in the win. It’s the sixth time this season that the Auggies have scored at least one shorthanded goal. They lead the country in that category.
Behind the first shutout of the year by Tanner Milliron, Wisconsin-River Falls knocked off Concordia (Minn.) 1-0 Saturday in a nonconference game. Mike Dietrich scored the lone goal in the win over the Cobbers as the Falcons pushed their record to 10-4-2 on the season. Milliron has won eight games this year. He made 23 saves in the victory. River Falls has won its last five games overall. It defeated St. John’s 3-1 on Friday. Mike Williams, Eddie Matsushima and Cory Lushanko all scored goals for the Falcons as they opened the weekend on a high note … Wisconsin-Eau Claire edged St. Olaf 4-3 Saturday as it capped off a 2-0 weekend. The Blugolds smashed Gustavus Adolphus 9-1 on Friday and they have won their last three games overall. Eau Claire is 10-3-2 overall on the season. The nine goals against Gustavus is the second-most Eau Claire has scored this season against an opponent. David Henry, Jesse Tredinnick, Adam Knochenmus and Derek Knetter all scored for Eau Claire in the win over the Oles. Knochenmus now has 16 goals on the year. Jay Deo earned the win as he stopped 27 shots. He is 4-1-1 on the season.
Lawrence played well in a weekend series with Concordia (Wis.), winning the opener 2-0 before playing the Falcons to a 2-2 tie in the finale. The Vikings got a stellar performance from goaltender Mattias Soderqvist, who made 26 saves and handed Concordia its first shutout loss of the season on Friday. The Falcons had their four-game win streak snapped in the loss to the Vikings. Lawrence defeated Concordia for the third consecutive time overall as it swept two games against the Falcons a year ago. Mikkel Joehnk and Nick Felan both scored for the Vikings in Friday’s victory. With the tie on Saturday, it is unbeaten in its last four games against Concordia. Luke McDiarmid and Steve Hughes both scored for the Vikings on Saturday … Lake Forest snapped the Milwaukee School of Engineering’s five-game win streak Friday with a 4-0 win. The Foresters led 3-0 after one period and never looked back. Vito Aluia scored twice to pace the Foresters while Leo Podolsky made 23 saves to earn the shutout. It was a different story on Saturday as Omar Mullan came through with a hat trick to propel the Raiders to a 4-1 bounce-back win. Mullan scored 15 goals a year ago but only had three coming into this game. Davis DeKorte scored the lone goal for the Foresters. It was his first of the season. Austin Campbell started in goal and earned the win as he made 23 saves. The Raiders improved to 9-4 overall and to 4-4 in the conference. Lake Forest is now 6-7 overall and 4-6 in the NCHA.