Vermont takes down No. 12 Union behind Hoffman's 24 saves
BURLINGTON, Vt. -- Robert Polesello and Kyle Reynolds each scored a goal and Brody Hoffman made 24 saves as Vermont shut down 12th-ranked Union down the stretch for a 2-1 win in the annual Catamount Cup on Saturday at Gutterson Fieldhouse. The Catamounts improved to 5-8-4 (3-5-4 HEA), while the Dutchmen fell to 8-4-4 (3-2-3 ECAC) to push their winless streak to five.
“I'm really pleased. I thought it was a total team effort,” head coach Kevin Sneddon said. “A lot of the details of the game, we paid special attention to. Even the plays at the end, I said to our guys, that's what wins hockey games. Those little things add up over the course of the game and I thought we did that well.”
After a scoreless first period, the Catamounts finally opened the scoring roughly halfway through the game. Mike Montagna led a pass down the right wing boards to Brett Bruneteau, and he skated in on a 2-on-1 with Polesello. Bruneteau deked to his backhand and slid a feed to Polesello, who fired the puck into the open net for his second collegiate goal.
Later in the frame, Vermont doubled the lead after killing off its third consecutive Union power play. Yvan Pattyn sent a stretch pass down the middle of the ice for Reynolds and he skated in alone on Troy Grosenick. Reynolds deked backhand and beat Grosenick through the five hole to make it a 2-0 game. Chris McCarthy picked up the second assist on the play.
The Dutchmen drew a goal back on the power play at the 12:31 mark of the third period. Mat Bodie's center point shot was blocked by Vermont in the slot, but Greg Coburn picked up the loose puck and fired it blocker side past Hoffman. Kyle Bodie had the second assist as Union cut the lead to 2-1.
After calling its timeout, Union pulled Grosenick with 65 seconds remaining for an extra skater. Jacob Fallon won several faceoffs in the final minute and the Cats sealed the victory in the Union offensive zone. Vermont finished the night 3-for-4 on the penalty kill against a Dutchmen power play that entered the night ranked first in the nation.