Concordia-Moorhead (Minn.) College and No. 13 Norwich University both earned opening-day victories of the 19th Annual PrimeLink Great Northern ShootOut at the Ronald B. Stafford Ice Arena on Friday. Norwich topped Middlebury College, 3-2, in overtime during the opening game, while Concordia-Moorhead grabbed a 4-3 win over host No. 11 Plattsburgh State in the nightcap. The tournament winner will be determined Saturday, as Concordia-Moorhead and Norwich tangle in the title game at 7 p.m., while Middlebury and Plattsburgh State battle in the consolation contest at 4 p.m. Plattsburgh State and Norwich’s rankings are according to the latest U.S. College Hockey Online (USCHO) Division III national poll.
Plattsburgh State slipped to 3-3 on the season as sophomore Cole Stallard (Waleska, Ga./New Hampshire Jr. Monarchs) scored two goals and freshman Brady Pfaff (South Riding, Va./Islanders Hockey Club) provided two assists. Sophomore Jesse Neher (Calgary, Alberta/Cowichen Valley Capitals) had one goal and senior Brady Rouleau (Fort Macleod, Alberta/Quinnipiac) collected 16 saves in net.
Concordia-Moorhead, which improves to 4-3, received goals from seniors Garrett Hendrickson (Virginia, Minn./Coulee Region Chill) and Jordan Krebsbach (Virginia, Minn./Alexandria Blizzard) and juniors Jon Grebosky (Oakdale, Pa./Aberdeen Wings) and Dalton Mills (Usbridge, Ontario/Bradford Bulls), with Hendrickson and Krebsbach also assisting. Freshman Sam Nelson (Eau Claire, Wis./Wisconsin Rapid Riverkings) made 25 stops for the win.
Concordia-Moorhead potted two opening-period goals against Plattsburgh State, thanks to tallies from Grebosky at 5:29 and Mills at 17:50. Grebosky shot through traffic on his marker and Mills stole the puck in the neutral zone before skating down the left side and snapping a shot to the right side.
The second period saw a fury of five combined goals, three by the Cardinals and two by the Cobbers. Neher buried a rebound at 3:35 to make the score 2-1 and then Stallard scored twice on the power play in a 66-second span to vault Plattsburgh State into a 3-2 lead. Concordia-Moorhead countered with goals from Krebsbach at 12:08 and Hendrickson at 16:26 to regain a 4-3 edge. In the closing seven minutes of the game, Cardinal freshmen Charles Barber (Queensbury, N.Y./New York Bobcats) and Gavin Yates (Plymouth, Mass./South Shore Kings) both clanged shots off the left post.
Norwich junior Payton Baldillez (Arlington, Texas/New Hampshire Jr. Monarchs) scored 3:40 into overtime for the 6-1-1 Cadets. Classmate Kevin Salvucci Plymouth, Mass./Baystate Breakers) and freshman Trent Dillinger (Gillette, Wyo./Wichita Falls Wildcats) both scored, with Salvucci also assisting once. Senior Cody Smith (Hudson, Mass./Boston Jr. Bruins), junior Alec Brandrup (Rochester, Minn./Melville Millionaires) and freshman Christian Thompson (Windham, N.H./Phillips Exeter Academy) each dished one assist. Junior Braeden Ostepchuk (Lethbridge, Alberta/Selkirk Steelers) stopped 31 shots for the win.
Middlebury, which dropped to 0-3, received scores from sophomores Mark Lyman (Deephaven, Minn./Blake School) and Kamil Tkaczuk (Oakville, Ontario/Oakville Blades), with help from classmate Matt Doherty (Milton, Mass./Saint Sebastian’s) and freshmen Mitchell Allen (Clifton Park, N.Y./Islanders Hockey Club), Brendan Dawson (Medway, Mass./Connecticut Rangers) and Danny Jacobs (Needham, Mass./Noble and Greenough School). Junior Stephen Klein (Saskatoon, Saskatchewan/Bonnyville Pontiacs) made 33 saves.
Norwich owned a 1-0 lead after a 15-shot opening period. Salvucci sent the game’s first shot on goal at 1:39, but Klein gobbled up the chance. Middlebury went up on the power play with 6:44 remaining, and senior Travis Stephens (Victoria, British Columbia/Victoria Grizzlies) recorded the Panthers’ only man-advantage shot. The Cadets then tallied the game’s first goal with only one second left in the stanza Brandup’s point shot went through Klein’s legs.
Dillinger scored at 3:15 of the second to give the Cadet lead to 2-0, but Tkaczuk cut the deficit in half with a power-play tally at 9:16. Lyman then buried the equalizer at 9:08 to knot the game at 2-2 in the third period. With just 45 seconds left in regulation, Middlebury junior Mark McLellan (Surrey, British Columbia/Victoria Grizzlies) scooted up ice on a breakaway, but his bid was kicked away by Ostepchuk’s right pad. Norwich’s overtime winner came off Baldillez’s stick when he ripped a shot into the right side at 3:40 of the extra frame.
Courtesy: Plattsburgh State Athletics
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