Faced with a 1-0 deficit after one period, the nationally-ranked No. 3 Plattsburgh State men's hockey team rattled off six unanswered goals en route to a 6-1 over Castleton in a non-league game Saturday night at the Stafford Ice Arena.
The Spartans (8-7-1) struck first, capitalizing on a late power play in the first period with a goal from Charles Bando to give Castleton a 1-0 lead at the end of one. Chris Stachiw picked up an assist on Bando's fifth of the year.
The Cardinals (12-1-2) rallied for the second straight evening when Michael Radisa tied it up at the 3:42 mark of the second period with his fourth of the year from Preston Kaye.
From that point on Plattsburgh State never looked back, rattling off three more goals in the middle stanza to silence Castleton State. With the Cardinals on the penalty kill, Luke Baleshta cleared the puck and found Alex Jensen on the rush up the right side. Jensen came in contact with Castleton goaltender Mark Hochman, who came out to break up the opportunity, which caused the loose puck to sail behind Hochman and into the empty net. The short-handed goal gave the Cardinals a 2-1 lead at 7:35 of the second.
Castleton took a pair of penalties at the midway point of the second period, giving Plattsburgh State a 5-on-3 that led to Graham Yeo's first collegiate goal. Yeo grabbed a loose puck along the boards and took a shot from the slot to give the Cardinals a 3-1 advantage.
Jensen added his second of the night at the 13:59 mark of the second period, beating Hochman on the glove side to make it 4-1 in favor of Plattsburgh State at the end of two periods of play.
Plattsburgh State added two more in the third to round out the scoring. Michael Cassidy buried a one-timer from Kevin Emmerling at 6:26 before Jensen completed the hat trick with 29 seconds left in regulation.
Mathieu Cadieux reclaimed his spot between the pipes for the Cardinals, stopping 23 of the 24 shots he faced to improve to 11-1-2. Hochman made 37 stops in the loss for Castleton.
Castleton's visit marked the return of former Cardinal Assistant Coach Steve Moffat, who is in his first season as the Spartans' head coach. Moffat was recognized by Plattsburgh State Head Coach Bob Emery and the Cardinals in a brief pregame ceremony that highlighted his 17-year Cardinal career including four years as a member of the Cardinal men's hockey team and 13 years as a member of the Cardinal coaching staff.
The Cardinals must now take the show on the road as Plattsburgh State plays six road games in the next three weeks. The first assignment comes Tuesday night as the Cardinals travel to Northfield, Vt. to take on the Norwich Cadets at 7 p.m.
Courtesy: Plattsburgh Athletics
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