MIDDLEBURY, Vt. – Norwich scored a goal in each period and sophomore Parker Carroll turned aside all 12 shots he faced to help lead the Cadets to their first shutout win against rival Plattsburgh State since Jan. 11, 2000 in the opening round of the 14th annual PrimeLink Great Northern Shootout.
Doug Lindensmith, Colin Mulvey and Travis Janke accounted for the three Norwich goals.
The top-ranked Cadets (5-0-0, 4-0-0 ECAC East) took the lead at the 12:05 mark of the first period when Lindensmith followed up his own shot and flipped home the rebound on his backhand to give Norwich a 1-0 lead with his fourth goal of the game and first since scoring a hat trick in the season opener on Nov. 11.
Lindensmith attempted to send a pass to the opposite wing to a streaking Kyle Thomas but it was blocked by a sliding Plattsburgh defender. Lindensmith stayed with the play and flipped a backhand over Plattsburgh goaltender Mathieu Cadieux who was taken out of the play by the same defender that blocked the initial pass. Freshman defenseman Corey Hale picked up an assist on the goal as well as Thomas.
Plattsburgh (5-2-0, 3-1-0 SUNYAC) nearly tied the game in the final minute of the opening frame when Matt MacLeod pinched up and took a slap shot from the high slot with traffic in front of Carroll. MacLeod’s shot found its way through Carroll’s pads but the puck slid wide just to the left of the goal.
Norwich stretched its lead to 2-0 when Mulvey picked Plattsburgh defender Mike Grace’s pocket by lifting his stick in the Cardinals’ defensive zone and then proceeded to beat Cadieux high blocker side with a quick wrist shot from the middle of the slot. Mulvey’s goal was shorthanded as there was still six seconds left in senior defenseman Pasha Kozhokin’s minor tripping penalty.
Plattsburgh threatened to cut into the lead late in the second period with three quality scoring chances coming on the power play. Patrick Jobb had the first chance a little shy of the 15-minute mark of the period when he unleashed a one timer from the top of the right circle that Carroll caught with his left shoulder after cutting across the crease quickly. Just seconds later the Cardinals’ Vic Schleuter had a shot blocked by Tory Allan. At the tail end of the power play, Norwich captain Shawn Baker blocked a shot by Jake Mooney after Mooney picked off an outlet pass from Janke at the Norwich blue line.
Plattsburgh came out flying at the start of the third period and nearly cut into the deficit again just over four minutes in when Nick Jensen spun around in middle of right circle and beat Carroll to right but puck ricocheted off the inside of the right post and deflected out.
In the final minute of the game with their goalie pulled, the Cardinals finally got one past Carroll after the puck deflected off Nick Jensen and into the back of the net. However, the goal was waved off after the official ruled a Cardinal player touched the puck with his hand before the puck went into the net.
Janke capped the scoring with less than a second remaining in the game with an empty net tally to make it 3-0 Norwich.
Norwich outshot Plattsburgh 18-12 and picked up their second straight win over the Cardinals after the Cadets downed PSU 3-2 in overtime in the NCAA Quarterfinals last season. Norwich also improved to 25-19-5 all-time against Plattsburgh.
Carroll improved to 4-0-0 on the year and pushed his career record in the Maroon & Gold up to an impressive 20-1-2. Cadieux made 15 saves for Plattsburgh in a losing effort and fell to 3-2-0 on the year.