SCHENECTADY, N.Y. — Forward Kevin Sullivan had two goals and an assist and goaltender Troy Grosenick made 28 saves as No. 19 Union (19-12-5) clinched an ECAC Hockey quarterfinal series victory in Game 2 with a 5-2 win against Dartmouth (15-14-5) in front of 1,835 fans at Messa Rink.
With the win, Union earned its fourth consecutive victory and returns to the ECAC Hockey semifinals for the second consecutive season and the third time in the past four years.
Forward Kyle Bodie, defenseman Shayne Gostisbehere and forward Josh Jooris added goals for Union, which jumped out to a 3-0 lead early in the second period and never let Dartmouth get closer than two goals the rest of the way.
Leading 1-0 entering the second period after an early Sullivan goal in the opening frame, Bodie and Gostisbehere scored early second-period goals to chase Dartmouth starting goaltender Charles Grant (12 saves) from the game.
Bodie gave Union a two-goal lead, taking a backhand pass from forward Daniel Ciampini and firing a shot toward the net. Bodie’s initial shot was blocked, but he got his own rebound and beat Grant high at 2:37.
A little more than two minutes later, after sustained pressure in the Dartmouth zone, Sullivan fed Gostisbehere at the left circle, and Gostisbehere beat Grant with a wrist shot inside the far post at 4:47 to put Union up 3-0.
With Cab Morris (13 saves) in net, Dartmouth responded by carrying the play for the remainder of the period. Eric Robinson hit the post at 7:44, and despite a Union penalty moments later, the Big Green cut into the Union lead with a shorthanded tally.
With Rick Pinkston in the penalty box for hooking, Eric Neiley stole the puck from Jooris and skated in on a 2-on-1. Neiley’s shot deflected off of Mat Bodie and went between the pads of Grosenick at 9:20.
Dartmouth got a power-play opportunity minutes later when Mat Bodie was sent off for interference at 12:15, and appeared to cut Union’s lead to 3-2 during the man advantage, but officials ruled that Matt Lindblad batted the puck in with his hand on a rebound off a shot by Neiley at the 13:04 mark.
Union killed off another Dartmouth power play early in the third period as forward Daniel Carr was sent off for roughing at the 20:00 mark of the second period. The Dutchmen finished the night 2-for-2 on the penalty kill and have not allowed a power-play goal in four consecutive contests.
At 11:15 of the third period, Jooris scored his ninth goal of the season, firing a shot over the left shoulder of Morris to put Union up 4-1.
Dartmouth’s Dustin Walsh answered at 15:03, stealing an errant pass from Gostisbehere and beating Grosenick low to make it 4-2.
But Sullivan sealed the win with his second goal on the power play at 19:00, with Nick Bligh in the penalty box for boarding. Carr broke his stick on a shot from the point, but the puck went right to Sullivan, who put in the rebound to send Union on to the next round. Union finished the night 1-for-3 on the power play.
The Dutchmen got off to another quick start, as Sullivan capitalized on a Dartmouth turnover to give the Dutchmen a 1-0 lead in the opening minutes of the game.
Forward Max Novak forced a turnover and junior forward Matt Hatch corralled the puck. Hatch fed Sullivan streaking down the center of the ice, and he finished the play with a shot over the shoulder of Grant at 1:32.
Union had a wide margin in shots in the early stages of the contest, but Dartmouth picked up the pressure later in the period forcing Grosenick to make a series of nice stops.
His best save came on Dartmouth’s Brad Shierhorn, who found himself all alone in the slot with the puck, but Grosenick made a pad save at the 14:00 mark to keep Union ahead 1-0 after one period of play.