There was big excitement in Waterville, Maine where Colby opened the new Jack Kelley Rink against the University of New England. In Vermont, Castleton did something no team had done in over 400 calendar days and 11 games when they scored a goal against the Cadets, ending an incredible NCAA record. Here is the wrap-up from a full slate of action:
Colby v. University of New England
The new Jack Kelley Rink at Colby College has been waiting for this opportunity to host real hockey and a weekend series with UNE provided the christening of the new facility. The rink is a wonderful facility and although the Mules were swept by UNE in two games, the new home really showed well in Saturday’s home opener.
On Saturday at UNE, the teams entered the third period tied at 2-2. Forward Brett Mecrones gave UNE an early 3-2 lead but just a couple of minutes later, Quinn Doyle answered for Colby with a shorthanded goal. Just over halfway through the period Liam Darcy scored the game-winner for the Nor’easters and Billy Girard IV made it stand up with 28 saves in goal. On Sunday afternoon, the Nor’easters took a 4-0 win behind two goals from Logan DiScanio to complete the series sweep.
Castleton v. Norwich
The two NEHC rivals played three games in four days with the Cadets winning all three by a 13-1 scoring margin. The “1” by Castleton represents a breakthrough for Norwich opponents dating back more than 11 games and 407 calendar days as the last time that an opponent scored a goal against them in an official NCAA game. The record extends more than 700 minutes of play dating back to the 2019-2020 season and into play this season.
On Wednesday, the Cadets leveraged five different goal scorers and 26 saves from goalie Drennen Atherton for a 5-0 win. On Friday, Atherton again picked up a shutout and Carter Cowlthorp and Niks Krollis provided just enough scoring for the 2-0 win. The three-game series ended on Saturday with Norwich winning 6-1 behind two goals each from Krollis and Felix Brassard. For you trivia fans, it was Castleton’s Stone Stelzl who broke the scoreless streak with a power-play goal at 16:35 of the third period, beating goaltender Andrew Albano for the 6-1 final score.
Massachusetts-Dartmouth v. Franklin Pierce
On Thursday, the Corsairs broke open a 2-2 contest with four unanswered goals in the third period to seal a 6-2 win over the Ravens. Zach Tarantino, Cade Hanley, Blake Harlow and Kai Kapossy all scored in the final period to help Parker Butler earn the win in goal.
On Saturday, UMD used the same formula by scoring late to break open a close contest with the Ravens and completed the two-game sweep with a 4-2 win. After FPU’s Jackson Dobek tied the game at 2-2 early in the second period, Jimmy Pelton and Michael Mania scored for the Corsairs to provide the final scoring. Goaltender Chris Stangarone made 25 saves to earn the win.
Curry v. Becker
The Colonels opened their season on Friday with a thrilling 3-2 win that was in doubt until the final two minutes of play. After forging a 2-0 lead, Curry was tied late in the third period on Charles Costello’s penalty shot goal with less than three minutes on the clock. The tie was short lived as Michael Curran scored just 56 seconds later for the game winner.
On Saturday, four different scorers made things a little easier for Curry who used 20 saves from Cody Murch for the 4-0 shutout win.
Connecticut College v. Albertus Magnus
The Camels took a 6-2 win on Saturday as forward Matt Creamer opened and closed the scoring for the home team in a 6-2 win. On Sunday afternoon, Albertus Magnus kept things close through the first 40 minutes of play as Jon Olson and Owen Allan helped the hosts to a 2-2 tie at the end of the second period. Steven Senese scored two goals as part of a four-goal outburst for the Camels who took the return match by the same 6-2 score.
Babson v. Plymouth State
The Beavers took both games of the weekend set by scores of 6-5 and 3-1. On Friday the visiting Panthers were ready for the challenge as they outshot Babson by a 46-37 margin and twice rallied from two-goal deficits against their hosts. Mike McPherson tied the game at 5-5 with just under five minutes remaining in regulation but James Perullo scored his first goal of the season in the final two minutes to give Babson the one-goal win.
On Saturday, Jack Nisbet and Ryan Black gave Babson a 2-0 lead but McPherson again answered for Plymouth State with a goal in the final 23 seconds of the second period to cut the lead in half. That is the only goal that Nolan Hildebrand would surrender as Christian Faggas sealed the win with an empty-net goal and the 3-1 win.
Utica v. Elmira
Unfortunately, the second game of the weekend series had to be postponed due to COVID protocols, but Friday night saw Utica take a dominating 7-1 win over Elmira. Dante Zapata and Conor Landrigan combined for three goals and seven points as the Pioneers raced to a 4-0 first period lead and cruised to the 7-1 win. Three of the four first period tallies came on the power play where Utica took advantage of early penalties by the home team.
Lebanon Valley v. Neumann
On Friday, the Flying Dutchman took advantage of 34 saves from goaltender Henry Burns and two goals from Brad Viola to hang on for a 3-2 win over the Knights.
On Saturday, the Knights launched an assault on LVC’s Aidan Richardson with 38 shots. Kyle Scott’s first period goal stood as the only marker until Neumann’s Dan Cangelosi scored in the third period on a penalty shot leveling the game at 1-1. The remainder of regulation and overtime could not decide the contest, but Richardson was solid in the shootout stopping all three Knight attempts with Viola providing the goal for the shootout win. Lebanon Valley remains unbeaten in UCHC play at 2-0-1.
Nazareth v. Wilkes
Wilkes swept the two-game series scoring 14 goals in the 6-3 and 8-2 wins over Nazareth. On Friday, Tyler Barrow scored a hat trick for the Colonels, but the visitors needed a three-goal third period to break open the 3-3 contest. Goals by Donald Flynn, Devon Schell and Dylan Kuipers provided the final margin in the win.
On Saturday, Flynn and linemate Nick Fea combined for seven points as Wilkes scored four goals in the third period for a comfortable 8-2 win that moved them to 3-2-0 in UCHC play.
Tyler Barrow – Wilkes – scored a hat trick for the Colonels in Friday’s 6-3 win over Nazareth. Barrow’s first two goals came on the power play and he completed the trick with an even-strength goal in the second period.
Dante Zapata – Utica – recorded four points with two goals and two assists in the Pioneers’ 7-1 win over Elmira on Friday night.
Felix Brassard – Norwich – scored two goals and assisted on another to lead the Cadets to a 6-1 win and three-game sweep of in-state rival Castleton.
More teams have taken the ice adhering to the COVID protocols and the game action has been both exciting and highly competitive.