In a hard fought, tight-checking contest, a third period goal propelled Geneseo to a 2-1 conference win over Fredonia.
“It was a typical Fredonia-Geneseo game,” Geneseo coach Chris Schultz said. “Seems like every time we play them, it’s a one-goal game. It goes down to the wire. They play with a lot of energy. You’ve got to come to work. If you get lazy at all, they will take advantage of your laziness. For the most part, we hung in there.”
“It’s great SUNYAC hockey,” Fredonia coach Jeff Meredith said. “Two teams killing each other out there, finishing checks, battling for every inch of the ice, killing off penalties. It was a gritty, greasy game. I was very pleased with how our guys played. They left me not wanting anything more from them.”
The first period was scoreless, with a few power play opportunities for both teams. Geneseo had the better chances on theirs, with Ryan Bulach coming the closest with a dangerous turnaround shot in the slot area.
Geneseo got on the board first on their first second period power play at 3:12. The goal was a result of a Fredonia defensive lapse. Geneseo come up the ice on a quick rush, catching Fredonia on a change, hampered by one of their players being knocked to the ice. This allowed Corbin Rosmarin to slip behind the defenders. Manley fed him, Rosmarin took the pass at the high slot, hesitated to ensure control, waited for Mark Friesen to move first, and then flipped a backhander over him.
“We’ve been working on stretching the zone and trying to make that long pass,” Schultz said. “Corbin is playing with a lot of confidence right now. If there is a guy I want the puck on his stick with a breakaway, he’s one of the guys. He did a great job with it.”
A minute earlier, Fredonia nearly had the 1-0 lead. Bryan Ross at the backdoor missed tipping in a rebound with a wide open net, hitting the post instead.
The Blue Devils came out firing in the third period, quickly scoring the tying goal in 20 seconds. The puck squirted out to the high-slot area where Brad Nunn one-timed a slap shot. The puck sailed up over the left shoulder of Adrian Rubeniuk.
“It came out; Nunn got great wood on it,” Meredith said. “I don’t think the kid saw it, and it went up into the corner.”
The tie didn’t last long, as David Arduin picked up a loose rebound off the side at 3:36. Geneseo installed new boards and seamless glass over the summer. A hard shot by Ryan Bulach went wide, but bounced hard off the backboards and out on the opposite side. Arduin picked up the loose puck, flipping it over the goaltender’s leg.
“That was a case of the new boards,” Schultz said. “They are a lot more lively. It’s a different game now altogether. With that goal with the wide shot, ‘Ardie’ was in the right place at the right time. It was a good finish, as he had to get it over Friesen. It was a goal-scorer’s goal.”
Fredonia had trouble getting their goalie out for the extra attacker, but when they finally did, Geneseo was disorganized, running around in their own zone. However, the Blue Devils were unable to get the equalizer. Fredonia outshot Geneseo in the final period, 13-6.
Rubeniuk made 29 saves for the win, while Friesen also stopped 29 shots in the loss.
Geneseo (2-0-0, 2-1-0) travels to Oswego on Friday and Cortland on Saturday.
Fredonia (0-1-1, 2-1-1) also travels for a conference game at Morrisville and then an exhibition against Penn State.