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December 29, 2013 E-MAIL PRINT Bookmark and Share

Vermont Cools Clarkson, Wins Sixth in Last Seven

Cornell, Maine Advance to Florida Championship

CHN Staff Report

Vermont received a point from nine different players and Brody Hoffman made 29 saves as the Catamounts held off ninth-ranked Clarkson for a 3-2 victory on day one of the Catamount Cup on Saturday at Gutterson Fieldhouse. The Catamounts have won six of their last seven games to improve to 9-6-1.

"I saw a lot of good things tonight," Vermont coach Kevin Sneddon said. "We got ourselves into a little bit of a predicament. We were playing extremely well in the second period and then the penalty box door was open for us quite a bit and put us in a tough bind. I'm proud our guys got through that and weathered the storm and I certainly felt we played very well in the third period."

Seven minutes into the third period, H.T. Lenz intercepted a Clarkson pass in the UVM defensive zone and lobbed the puck ahead down the middle of the ice. Tom Forgione hopped onto the loose puck with speed and skated in alone on Clarkson goalie Steve Perry. The freshman deked to his backhand and slipped a shot through Perry's five hole as Vermont restored the two-goal lead.

"H.T. made a great play at center ice. I saw him go down, I read it, took a chance. He just slapped it forward and I was able to out-accelerate the defenseman," Forgione said. "I came in with a lot of speed hoping the five-hole would open up and just slid it five-hole."

Senior Pete Massar had the first Vermont goal, coming against his former team. Massar transferred from Clarkson after the 2010-11 season, then sat out a year before playing against with Vermont last season.

In the other game, Massachusetts-Lowell defeated Canisius.

This tournament has a set-schedule format. Vermont will host Canisius on Sunday, while Lowell takes on Clarkson.

Elsewhere

Andy Iles made a season-high 44 saves and Florida native Brian Ferlin scored the winning goal to lead Cornell to a 4-2 victory over New Hampshire on Saturday night in a first-round game of the Florida College Hockey Classic at Germain Arena in Estero, Fla.

Maine shut out Princeton, 4-0, in the earlier game, and will face Cornell in Sunday's final.

Joakim Ryan scored the go-ahead goal, and Joel Lowry had a pair of assists for the Big Red.

Cornell (8-4-2) was put on its heels early in its first game action in three weeks, falling behind by a goal less than five minutes into the game. New Hampshire (9-10-1) had a 17-7 advantage in shots on goal in the first period, aided significantly by receiving all three power plays of the frame. But with Big Red goalie Andy Iles stopping 16 of the Wildcats' shots in the first 20 minutes, Cornell entered the first intermission tied — thanks to captain John McCarron's fourth goal of the season.

Cornell pulled ahead for good with a superior second period. Ryan's fifth goal of the season gave the Big Red the lead at 2:30. Reece Willcox started the play with a breakout up the middle and flipped dump-in to the right corner of the UNH zone. Jeff Kubiak was quick to the puck and wheeled behind the net and back up to Ryan at the left point. His shot sailed past traffic and DeSmith.

A huge defensive play then set up Ferlin's winning goal on the power play. New Hampshire's Matt Willows entered the Big Red zone on the left wing on a two-on-one. Freshman defenseman Patrick McCarron slid across to knock down Willows' attempted pass toward the middle, then Ryan quickly turned the puck up ice in transition. Dustin Mowrey set up Ferlin for a shot from the right circle that DeSmith stopped, but the hulking winger got free to convert the rebound for his team-leading eighth goal of the season. Ferlin is familiar with Germain Arena, having played at the youth level with a Florida Junior Everblades that was based in Estero.

New Hampshire bounced back when Justin Agosta's 100-foot dump-in took a fluky bounce into the Big Red net just 2:09 into the third period, but the Big Red held on to improve to 7-0 this season when leading a game after two periods. Iles made a handful of enormous saves down the stretch. After stopping a Trevor van Riemsdyk point shot, Iles slid across to his left to thwart Grayson Downing on the rebound with 8:34 to play. A minute later, Iles stuffed van Riemsdyk's shot from point-blank range following a turnover on an attempted Big Red breakout.

* * *

Bentley senior Brett Gensler netted a hat trick, and surpassed the 60-goal milestone for his career, as the Falcons defeated Holy Cross, 3-2, outdoors at Fenway Park in Boston, part of a two-week-long Frozen Fenway series.

The win extends Bentley’s unbeaten streak to eight (7-0-1), the second longest in program history and longest since the 1980-81 season. It moves the Falcons into a first-place tie in Atlantic Hockey.

Gensler notched his 60th career goal and second of the evening at 5:45 of the second period to give Bentley a 2-1 lead, becoming just the third player in the program’s Division I history to hit that milestone. He cleaned up a rebound in front of the net off a shot from defenseman Matt Blomquist.

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