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OSWEGO, N.Y. — In yet another — as they all seem to be — classic Oswego-Plattsburgh showdown, 65 minutes of hockey could not decide a winner as every period ended with the teams tied.
Plattsburgh led 1-0 and 3-2, but a Nick Rivait goal halfway through the third period knotted the game up for good at 3-3.
“It was a great college hockey game playing for first place in a great atmosphere,” Oswego coach Ed Gosek said. “The guys who were in the lineup who haven’t played many minutes with us, I’m proud of the way all our guys played.”
“If you were a fan, you certainly enjoyed yourself,” Plattsburgh coach Bob Emery said.
Plattsburgh scored quickly less than two minutes into the game on a three-on-two down low. Connor Toomey passed it across the slot to the right where Brandon O’Quinn sent it past Matt Zawadzki.
Oswego tied it up at 8:01, breaking Brady Rouleau’s shutout streak at 197:45.
Shawn Hulshof couldn’t find anyone to pass it to, so from the high right slot area, he lifted a hard wrister over Rouleau’s glove.
“I felt our best period was the first period,” Emery said. “I thought to come out of that period 1-1 was tough on our part. I thought we had some great looks.”
Oswego took their only lead of the game a few minutes into the middle stanza on a two-on-one breakout.
Mitchell Herlihey kept the puck, but his hard shot was stopped. However, the rebound came straight out, and a trailing skater, Mike Montagna, fired it home.
With Oswego continue to dominate play in the second period, Emery called timeout. It worked like a charm.
Immediately after returning to play, Plattsburgh tied the game. Kyle Hall banged in a rebound right out in front.
“I was going to call a timeout earlier, but I hesitated,” Emery said. “Then I called it and, bang, we scored a goal. Everyone is an expert after the fact. I was just trying to light a little fire under them. I thought they came out of the locker room flat.”
Early in the third period during four-on-four play while on a delayed penalty call, Plattsburgh took its second lead of the game.
Toomey singlehandedly went through the Lakers’ defense and around the goalie to slide it over the line.
Then seven minutes later, Rivait got his goal during a power play with another shot from the high slot once again beating Rouleau on the glove side, this time through a screen.
Overtime saw both teams have excellent chances with Zawadzki having to make the more difficult saves, including a late breakaway.
“I thought we had a great chance with a minute and a half left, and he made a great glove save,” Emery said. “Our goalie played well, too. It was a great hockey game.”
“I thought he was very good,” Gosek said. “But at the same time, we had some pretty good looks in the second period.”
Zawadzki finished with 30 saves. while Rouleau stopped 25.
The tie keeps Oswego in first place by a point with one game left in the regular season. Oswego (17-2-4, 12-1-2) stays home to play Potsdam, who is fighting for a home playoff spot.
Plattsburgh (17-5-2, 12-2-1) heads down I-81 to face Cortland, who is already eliminated from the playoffs.
“It’s a tough one to swallow because a tie on the road so late in the year kind of puts us in second place depending on what happens tomorrow,” Emery said.
“We’ll take the tie,” Gosek said. “It helps prepare us for the playoffs. A tie is better than a loss. We were down twice and fought back. It shows resilience.”