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icehockey-men-d3 flag | February 22, 2014

DIII: Gray scores twice to lead Adrian in win

ADRIAN, Mich. -- Junior forward Shelby Gray had been hampered by injury having missed eight games since Jan. 10, but broke out in the first game of the NCHA Harris Cup quarterfinals with two goals in a 3-0 win against Milwaukee Engineering. Gray last scored on Jan. 10 when he broke his jaw against St. Olaf and had played mainly on the power play since returning to the lineup on Feb. 7.

Gray's first goal of the game gave Adrian a 1-0 lead at the 3:20 mark of the second period. The power-play goal came on Adrian's first attempt and it was Gray's eighth of the season and fifth on the power play. He unleashed a blast from the point that went top shelf with assists from Josh Ranalli and Ryan Lowe. Adrian had a very good second with 15 shots compared to eight for the Raiders, but still led just 1-0 through 40 minutes.

The Bulldogs got their cushion at 1:19 of the third to take a 2-0 lead. Josh Cousineau's seventh of the season came on a backdoor one-timer to the left of the net with assists from Ranalli and Justin Basso. Adrian sealed it at 7:31 of the third as Gray scored on a rebound off a shot from Jeremy Olinyk in front of the net. Kevin Balas had the second assist on the goal which was Gray's first multi-goal game of the season.

MSOE finished 0-for-5 on the power play and managed just three shots. Adrian could not score on their final three power plays and also had three total shots. Nick Kohn made 32 saves for the Raiders falling to 2-12 in net this season. James Hamby posted his third shutout of the season and fifth of his career making 21 saves.

No. 1 St. Norbert 5, Lawrence 0

DE PERE, Wis. -- St. Norbert began its journey in the Northern Collegiate Hockey Association Harris Cup Playoffs with a 5-0 shutout win against Lawrence in the first game of a quarterfinal series at Cornerstone Community Center.

The Green Knights (22-3-1), ranked No. 1 in the and Division III polls, need just a tie in Saturday to advance to the NCHA semifinals. If Lawrence (6-18-2) wins, a 20-minute mini-game will follow the regularly scheduled contest.

The series opener was all St. Norbert, which held a 46-12 shots on goal advantage. The Green Knights allowed the Vikings the first two shots on net of the game, but had 15 of the first period's last 16 shots for a 15-3 edge in the first 20 minutes, which ended scoreless.

St. Norbert got things rolling in the second period, when Joe Perry banged home his 17th goal of the season with a power-play marker at 4:49. Ross Pavek then finished a 2-on-1 breakaway off a pass from Noah Nelson for a 2-0 edge at 17:30.

The Green Knights padded their lead when Brandon Hoogenboom scored on a wrister at 9:01 of the third period. Hoogenboom, who now has 12 goals on the season, added his second of the game at 17:03. Michael Hill closed out the scoring with his 16th goal of the season at 18:09.

Pijus Rulevicius and Marian Fiala both had two assists for the Green Knights.

David Jacobson made 12 saves for his sixth shutout of the season and the 16th of his career, now only second in Division III history to former St. Norbert standout Kyle Jones' 25. Jacobson lowered his goals against average to 1.29, which is tops in Division III. Mattias Soderqvist made 41 stops for the Vikings.

St. Norbert was 1-for-5 on the power play, while Lawrence was 0-for-3.

No. 4 Plattsburgh State 11, Cortland State 1

PLATTSBURGH, N.Y. -- Plattsburgh State opened the final weekend of the regular season in dominating fashion as the Cardinals defeated Cortland, 11-1, in a State University of New York Athletic Conference game Friday night at the Stafford Ice Arena.

The Cardinals wasted no time gaining control in Friday night as Kevin Emmerling put Plattsburgh State on the board just 49 seconds into the game. Alex Jensen netted the eventual game-winner 50 seconds later to give Plattsburgh State a quick 2-0 lead. Emmerling found the back of the net again at the 3:11 mark to make it a 3-0 game before Cortland got one back on the power-play with a goal by Nick Zappia at 6:58. Despite Plattsburgh State's slim 12-11 advantage in shots on goal, the Cardinals took a 3-1 lead to the locker room at the end of the first.

It was all Plattsburgh State the rest of the way with goals from Ryan Farnan and Alex Brenton to open the second period. Emmerling completed the hat trick at 6:22 of the second with his sixth of the season from Brenton. Michael Cassidy closed out the scoring in the middle frame with a power-play marker at 7:46 to hand Plattsburgh State a 7-1 lead after two periods.

Plattsburgh State added four more goals in the third period to earn the home team its most lopsided victory since the Cardinals defeated Potsdam by the same score on Oct. 26, 2007. Emmerling finished the night with three goals and an assist while Dillan Fox chipped in four assists. Jensen and Brenton each registered two goals and an assists. Luke Baleshta and Connor Gorman contributed two points apiece.

Plattsburgh State goaltender Mathieu Cadieux, who was recipient of the 2014 Chartwells Fan Favorite Award Friday night, made 16 saves through two periods to earn the win for the Cardinals. Cadieux gave way to senior goaltender Sam Foley in the third period, who made four saves in his first action this season.

Cortland's Mark Balkwill recorded 38 saves in the loss. Michael Staversky stepped in for the final 14:58, making two saves for the Red Dragons.

With the win, Plattsburgh State improved to 19-3-2 overall and 12-1-2 in the SUNYAC. Cortland fell to 4-16-3 on the year and 3-10-2 in the conference. In other league games, Geneseo rallied for a 3-2 overtime victory against Buffalo State to remain atop the SUNYAC standings. Oswego State defeated Potsdam 4-3 to clinch the No. 3 seed while Buffalo State secured the No. 4 seed despite the loss. Brockport and Fredonia are tied for fifth with 13 points apiece with both teams securing a playoff berth Friday night.

No. 5 St. Thomas (Minn.) 3, St. John's (Minn) 1

MENDOTA HEIGHTS, Minn. -- Steve Sorenson scored with 6:30 to play to break a 1-1 tie as No. 5 St. Thomas (Minn.) beat St. John's (Minn.) 3-1 in MIAC play Friday night.

The teams play again Saturday night in St. Cloud, Minn.. With a win or tie in that game, the Toms (19-3-2 overall, 13-0-2 MIAC) would become the first MIAC men's hockey team in 32 seasons to finish unbeaten in conference play.

Thomas Williams tied the game late in Period 1. Alex Altenbernd added an empty-net goal with 21 seconds remaining. UST's eight points came from eight different players. St. Thomas has outscored opponents 27-7 in the third period of conference regular-season games this season.

John Haag scored a power-play goal to open the scoring for the Johnnies (15-9, 9-3).

Drew Fielding stopped 16 of 17 shots for UST.

No. 9 Trinity (Conn.) 2, Wesleyan (Conn.) 0

HARTFORD, Conn. -- First-year Ryan Cole scored two third period goals and senior goalie Ben Coulthard made 32 saves to lead the Trinity (Conn.) to a 2-0 shutout win against visiting Wesleyan (Conn.) in New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) action on Friday evening on Williams Rink at the Koeppel Community Sports Center. Trinity, ranked No. 9 in the nation, improves to 19-4 overall and 14-3 in the NESCAC, while Wesleyan drops to 11-10-2 overall and 6-10-1 in the league.

Approximately four minutes into the game, Trinity sophomore Michael Hawkrigg ripped a shot headed into a wide open goal, but Wesleyan rookie goaltender Dawson Sprigings came up with an athletic glove save that surprised the arena and set the tone for the game. It was a goalie's dual all night, as Sprigings left the Trinity offense scratching their heads with a plethora of highlight reel saves. Trinity ripped 48 shots on net in the game, all but one stopped by Sprigings, with the other Trinity score coming on an empty-netter at the close of the game.

But Coulthard, who was put to the test in the third period, came up with several big saves of his own, finishing with 32 saves for his first shutout of the season, and the fifth of his career.

Cole, one of the nation's top scorers, broke a scoreless tie when he raced Wesleyan sophomore Eric Casey on a breakaway early in the third period, and while falling, managed to trickle a shot by Sprigings after being tripped on the play. The goal relieved mounting frustration on behalf of the Bantams, who were battling not only a hot goalie, but several unlucky breaks, including four shots off the post.

With under eight minutes to play, Wesleyan ticked off a spree of shots, but Coulthard kept the Trinity net squeaky clean.  With just more than a minute to play, the Wesleyan offense gave the home crowd another scare, but Coulthard came up with more heroics, as Trinity clung to their one-goal lead moments before Cole put the game out of reach with his 17th goal of the year, streaking up the left side of the sheet, and burying a shot on an empty net, sealing the 2-0 win.