Goals – they are either the hardest things to find or they come in bunches that sometimes defies the logic of the game. This weekend saw Trinity, Hobart and others struggle to find goals against some outstanding goaltending while teams like Endicott and the University of New England scored at an astonishing rate. You take them when you can get them but know the games are coming where they are going to be hard to come by.
Here is this week’s recap of some crazy hockey games in the East:
What figured to be a great top ten matchup between the afore-mentioned UNE and Salve Regina turned into a pair of routs for the Nor’easters by identical 9-0 scores in the home-and-home series with the Seahawks. It should have been seen as a bad omen when a uniform snafu forced the visiting Seahawks to have to wear the blue sweaters of their hosts in what almost resembled an inter-squad scrimmage on Friday. Unfortunately, the Nor’easters started fast and converted on five straight power plays in the third period to rout the Seahawks in game one. Saturday, the setting and the uniforms changed for Salve Regina but not the outcome as UNE scored six times on 14 power play chances to hang another 9-0 loss on Salve Regina. Jeff Eppright and Austin Morgan scored two goals apiece in the Saturday game that moved the Nor’easters to 9-1-0 in CCC play.
Curry returned to play on this side of the Atlantic Ocean following a trip to Europe during the semester break. The Colonels don’t appear to be suffering from any time zone gaps as they secured a series sweep of Wentworth. On Friday at home, Curry launched 62 shots on goal in a 6-3 win that featured a pair of goals from Alex Ochterbeck. Saturday’s game would take a comeback as the Leopards built a 3-1 lead before Billy Vizzo and Viktor Jansson scored to send the game to overtime. In the extra session, Nicholas Favaro scored with just 23 seconds remaining in overtime to give Curry a 4-3 win and weekend sweep.
In the most lopsided game of the weekend, Endicott followed up a 5-0 Thursday night win over Becker by scoring 15 goals in a 15-0 win on Saturday. Forward James Winkler scored five goals and added three assists for eight points in the rout of the Hawks that moved the Gulls to 8-2-0 in league play.
Pierce Diamond made 37 saves and four different players scored for Albertus Magnus in a 4-1 win over Canton on Friday night. The Falcons held the Kangaroos to 0 for 5 on the power play in earning their first road win as a program.
In a weekend series between Bryn Athyn and Anna Maria, the AmCats took care of business on Saturday with a 4-1 win. Julius Huset made 34 saves and Sam Cyr-Ledoux opened and closed the scoring for the home team who earned their tenth win on the season. In Sunday’s series finale, a close battle saw Bryn Athyn leading 2-1 entering the third period on goals from Tanner Congdon and Nick Malvasi. Nick Kukuris tied it for the AmCats midway through the third period, but Nikita Smirnov answered a few minutes later for the Lions, and Devon Becker sealed the win with an empty-net goal in a 4-2 win that earned a weekend split of the series.
League-leading Plymouth State seems to have found their game at the right time of the season as they solidified their position atop the standings and extended their five-game unbeaten streak with wins over Worcester State and Massachusetts-Dartmouth. In the 5-1 win over the Lancers, the Panthers scored four answered goals in the final two periods to break open a 1-1 game for the win. On Saturday, Jake Gerbner scored two goals and Mike McPherson added three points in a 7-3 win over the Corsairs that pushed PSU’s conference record to 9-1-1.
After tying Anna Maria 1-1 in a nonconference game on Wednesday, Westfield State picked up an important MASCAC win over Fitchburg State on Saturday. The Owls benefitted from a pair of goals and an assist from Daniel Backstrom as well as 35 saves from goaltender Thierry Messervier in a 5-1 win. The win for Westfield State left them even with Fitchburg State at 6-2-2 in MASCAC play.
Assumption, who downed Franklin Pierce on Tuesday, picked up a win and a tie with Stonehill over the weekend. On Friday, the Greyhounds spotted the Skyhawks a 1-0 lead before scoring three straight goals and then held on for a 3-2 win with David Zulauf picking up the victory in goal. Saturday’s game saw Assumption outshoot Stonehill by a 48-27 margin but needed a third period goal from Collin Montgomery to earn a 4-4 tie. Cameron Wright recorded a hat trick for Stonehill, and goaltender Matthew Schoen made 44 saves in the game.
After dropping Tuesday’s game with Stonehill, 2-1, St. Michael’s could only manage a split with Post over the weekend. Friday saw another 2-1 game that went the Purple Knights way as two power play goals in the third period gave Tim Decker the win in goal for St. Michael’s. On Saturday, Post broke into the win column in NE-10 play with a 5-1 win over St. Michael’s. The Eagles were led by Tyler Hackett’s two goals and Brandon Brown’s 50 saves which included 23 in the second period alone. Post also went 2 for 3 on the power play to help break open a 2-1 game in the second period.
Norwich took a pair of key wins over Skidmore and Hobart to stay atop the NEHC standings. Against the Thoroughbreds, the Cadets needed three power play goals from Phil Elgstam, Felix Brassard and Coby Downs to win the seesaw battle by a 3-2 score. In Saturday’s marquee matchup with Hobart, it was Tom Aubrun who was the star for the Cadets. The senior goaltender made 28 saves and picked up the 3-0 shutout win that moved Norwich to 11-1-1 in NEHC play.
Babson’s formula for success kept pace with Norwich as both Brad Arvanitis and Aidan Murphy backstopped wins over New England College and Southern Maine. In Friday’s game against NEC, Arvanitis made 22 saves while forward Mike Egan scored two goals and added an assist in the 4-2 win.
Massachusetts-Boston showcased some offense in a pair of wins over the same NEC and Southern Maine schools their travel partner played on opposite nights. Defenseman Nick Albano had a four-point night in Friday’s 9-3 win over the Huskies while Jack Riley scored twice in a 4-1 win over the Pilgrims on Saturday.
Connecticut College won the unofficial D-III CT Invitational when they upset top-ranked Trinity and Wesleyan over the weekend. Goaltender Connor Rodericks was the star of the weekend for the Camels making 43 saves on Friday to down the Bantams, 1-0 and additional 35 saves in a 2-1 win over the Cardinals on Saturday.
Not to be outdone, the Camels travel partner, Tufts completed the same weekend sweep in equally dramatic fashion. The Jumbos Cal LeClair scored a natural hat trick, including a shorthanded tally to give Tufts a 3-0 lead on the way to a 4-2 win over Wesleyan on Friday. Against Trinity, first period goals from Mason Babbidge, Anthony Farinacci and Peter Hatton staked the Jumbos to a 3-1 lead which goaltender Josh Sarlo’s 39 saves helped stand up in a second 4-2 win on the weekend.
The beneficiary of Trinity’s zero-point weekend was Williams who used a sweep of games in Maine to move into first place in the NESCAC standings. The Ephs downed Colby on Friday 4-1 with Tyler Scott scoring a pair of goals. Against Bowdoin on Saturday, Williams won 5-1 with Jack Forrest recording a hat trick for the visitors. While Williams has moved into the top spot in the conference, only four points separate third place from eighth place in NESCAC.
On the strength of a 4-2 win over Potsdam and an Oswego overtime loss to Cortland on Friday night, Geneseo moved into first place in the SUNYAC standings. Carson Kelley scored two goals in the third period to break open a 2-2 tie and complete his hat trick for the Knights in the win. At Cortland, Logan Blaser’s power play goal tied the game at 2-2 in the third period for the Red Dragons before Martin Lavallee was the overtime hero in the 3-2 win over the Lakers. The Lakers took out their frustrations on Saturday against Canton in a nonconference game with an 8-2 win that featured four-point games from Michael Gillespie and Alex DiCarlo.
Geneseo played rival Plattsburgh on Saturday and skated to a 2-2 tie. Conlan Keenan and Andrew Romano staked the Knights to a 2-1 lead after two periods but Christian DeFelice’s power play goal in the third period gave the Cardinals an overtime tie.
After the win over Oswego, Cortland kept their momentum going with a 3-1 nonconference win over Hamilton on Saturday that featured a pair of goals from Alex Storjohann and 32 saves from goaltender Nick Modica.
Elmira and Wilkes tuned up for their big game on Saturday with respective wins over King’s and Lebanon Valley by scores of 9-0 and 5-2. On Saturday, the Soaring Eagles found a way to win in a hard fought 3-2 win over Wilkes at home. Donald Flynn gave the Colonels an early 1-0 lead, but Matthew Cuce answered on the power play in the final 20 seconds of the period to even the score at 1-1. Harry Kramer and Anthony Parrucci extended the lead to 3-1 for the home team before Nick Fea cut the deficit to one goal and still six minutes remaining in regulation. Goaltender Chris Janzen made sure the lead stood up with 36 saves on the night.
Utica kept pace with the leaders with wins over Neumann and Manhattanville. On Saturday, the Pioneers used special teams to their benefit scoring three power play goals and one shorthanded goal in a 5-2 win over the Black Knights. On Sunday, Utica officially put Manhattanville under siege in the opening period outshooting the Valiants by a 21-1 margin and taking an early 2-0 lead on goals by Justin Allen and Conor Landrigan. Kasper Kjellkvist added two goals in the 5-3 win that moved Utica to 8-2-1 in UCHC play, just two points behind Wilkes and Stevenson.
Connor Rodericks – Connecticut College – made 43 saves leading the Camels to a 1-0 upset win over No. 1 ranked Trinity on Friday night. Rodericks added 35 more saves in a 2-1 win over Wesleyan on Saturday giving D-III bragging rights to the Camels in the Nutmeg State.
James Winkler – Endicott – led all Gulls’ scorers with eight points in a 15-0 win over Becker. Winkler scored five goals and added three assists to conclude a series sweep where Endicott outscored Becker 20-0.
Nick Albano – Massachusetts-Boston – scored two goals and setup tow more for a four-point game in the Beacons’ 9-3 win over Southern Maine on Friday night.
The weekend showed you can’t take any team lightly and standings have tightened up accordingly. February is right around the corner so expect to see everyone’s best version of hockey down the stretch