Sunday, March 28, 2010

College Hockey Closer: Day 2

RIT 6, New Hampshire 2: A 1-1 game quickly became a decisive 4-1 advantage midway through the second period. RIT capitalized three times in 94 seconds to put away the Wildcats. They extended their lead to 5-1 at 10:01 in the third before letting UNH get one back at 17:31. The final tally was an ENG. RIT becomes the first Atlantic Hockey team to reach the Frozen Four, and have done so in just their fifth season of D-I hockey.

Boston College 3, Alaska 1: You have to hand it to the Nanooks. They hung tough with the Eagles all game. It was a shorthanded goal by Matt Lombardi that put BC up 1-0 midway through the first, and a power play goal from Andy Taranto that tied it up late in the second. BC scored the game-winner 3:46 into the third and added an empty-netter to seal the victory.

Yale 3, North Dakota 2: North Dakota may have overcome a 2-goal deficit to St. Cloud State in the WCHA final, but giving up a 3-goal lead to Yale was too much to overcome. It wasn't the sort of furious rally that RIT blitzed UNH with, but a steady build, with goals at 5:48 of the 1st, 12:49 of the 2nd, and 17:46 of the 2nd. North Dakota mounted a comeback effort with goals in the early 3rd from Brett Hextall and Matt Frattin, but the Elis held off the Sioux for 16 minutes to win their first NCAA tournament game since 1952.

Wisconsin 5, St. Cloud State 3: Four goals in the 1st, four goals in the 3rd, and an empty 2nd period. Wisconsin went up 3-1 in the first, and so it stayed until Jared Festler's shorthanded goal cut it to 3-2. Just under 3 minutes later, John Mitchell extended the Badgers' lead, but 10 minutes after that, the Huskies made it a one-goal game again. Aaron Bendickson's empty-netter finally put the Huskies away.

Miami 2, Alabama-Huntsville 1: Miami's speed and size were far too much for UAH, but the Chargers acquitted themselves well. They just couldn't stay out of the penalty box. They were assessed 4 minors in the first, 3 in the second, and 3 more in the third, and it looked like Miami was on a power play even when they weren't. When Miami made it a 2-0 game 6:06 into the 2nd on Cameron Schilling's power play goal, it felt like the game was out of reach for Huntsville. They finally got on the board with a power play goal of their own (Fun fact: All goals in this game were on the power play) and made it a one-goal game, but there were only 38 seconds left in the 3rd at that point.

Michigan 5, Bemidji State 1: If Huntsville spent a lot of time in the box, Michigan set up camp there. The Beavers took the first penalty of the night, which Michigan took advantage of. 5 seconds after Dan MacIntyre was let out of the box, Luke Glendening tipped Chad Langlais's shot from the point past Dan Bekala. After that, Michigan took 6 minors in the next 11 minutes (one was coincidental). The penalty kill and Shawn Hunwick worked wonders, and it looked like it was going to still be a tense 1-0 going into the 3rd, but Louie Caporusso took advantage of a 4-on-4 to give Michigan a bigger lead. Halfway through the 3rd, Bemidji finally cashed in on their 6th power play of the night. They caught Michigan scrambling after a failed interception attempt and kept the Wolverines off-balance long enough to get Ian Lowe open, and he put one behind Hunwick. Just two minutes later, however, Carl Hagelin and Kevin Lynch executed a gorgeous 2 on 1, Lynch making a perfect final pass with Bekala sprawling and allowing Hagelin a tap-in. Hagelin again had a gorgeous goal 3.5 minutes later. With Jeff Rohrkemper in the box for boarding, Hagelin took a perfect pass from Matt Rust to split two defenders and give him a breakaway on Bekala which he put away with a backhand. Lebler added an empty-netter to make it a 5-1 game.

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