After falling behind by a couple of goals halfway through the contest, it was only a pair of power play strikes in the final period, the second of which arrived with but a mere 20 seconds remaining on the game clock, that allowed the hosts to escape with a share of the spoils as # 1 ranked ST. CLOUD STATE rallied late to tie visiting UNION COLLEGE and avoid an embarrasing two-game sweep in the NCAA non-conference series this weekend.
The two-time defending ECAC Conference tournament champions, after registering a big 4-1 victory on Friday night, looked to be in great shape on Saturday evening, as well, after scoring three unanswered goals in the second period. A power play strike from Canadian legionnaire DANIEL CIAMPNI, the junior left wing from Concord, Ontario, who is tied for the Union College team lead with nine goals this term, a beautiful backdoor tap-in from Canadian legionnaire DANIEL CARR, the senior left wing from Sherwood Park, Alberta, who leads the Dutchmen with 22 points (nine goals) in 16 NCAA games this season, and an accurate shot off a faceoff from Canadian legionnaire ELI LICHTENWALD, the towering (6’6″ 235 lbs) freshman from Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, who has now scored seven goals in his first eleven collegiate contests, erased an early deficit and provided the in-form Dutchmen with a 3-1 lead after forty minutes.
After being heavily outshot in the second period of play, St. Cloud State turned the tables completely on Union College in the the final frame. JOEY BENIK, the homegrown sophomore left wing from Andover who his the fifth-leading scorer for the Huskies this season with 12 points, bagged his second goal in as many games against the visiting Dutchmen and provided the Huskies with legitimte hope after Union College defenseman SHAYNE GOSTISBEHERE, the talented junior who was the third round pick (# 78 overall) of the Philadelphia Flyers at the 2012 National Hockey League Draft, went to the sin bin for hooking. The hosts continued to press for an equalizer but, thanks to the work of visiting goaltender COLIN STEVENS, the junior from Niskayuna, New York, who remains unbeaten in his last nine starts this season, would have to wait until the very end.
St. Cloud State finally leveled dramatically in the waning moments when prolific center JONNY BRODZINSKI, the homegrown sophomore from Blaine who led the Huskies with 22 goals in 42 NCAA games as a freshmen and was then selected in the fifth round (# 148 overall) of the Los Angeles Kings at the 2013 NHL Draft this past summer, slammed the puck into a wide open net at close range to score his eighth goal this term after controlling a fine centering pass from his linemate Benik.
Union College center ELI LICHTENWALD (12), the emerging freshman from Canada who has now collected points in ten of his first eleven collegiate contests in the United States after sitting out seven of the Dutchmen’s first eight games to begin this season, raises his stick after scoring his seventh goal of the season halfway through the NCAA non-conference match with host St. Cloud State at the Herb Brooks National Hockey Center.
December 14, 2013
Herb Brooks National Hockey Center – St. Cloud, Minnesota
Attendance : 4,327
UNION COLLEGE 3 – ST. CLOUD STATE 3
12:26 … SCS – Holka (Dowd, Murray)
26:06 … UC – Ciampini (Gostisbehere, Vecchione) – ppg
29:03 … UC – Carr (Taylor, Wilkins)
30:07 … UC – Lichtenwald (Carr)
43:32 … SCS – Benik (Brodzinski, Kossila) – ppg
59:40 … SCS – Brodzinski (Benik, Dowd) – ppg
shots-on-goal : St. Cloud St 38 (14 + 7 + 13 + 2) – Union 26 (7 + 13 + 4 + 2)
penalty minutes : Union College 10 – St. Cloud St 4
ST. CLOUD STATE : Faragher – Gravel, Daly ; Prochno, Prow ; Nevalainen, Rabey – Benik, Kossila, Brodzinski ; Murray, Dowd, Holka ; Milan, Thorson, Bertsch ; Belisle, Morley, Papa
UNION COLLEGE : Stevens – Gostisbehere, Taylor ; Bodie, Vasaturo ; Henry, Gingras – Carr, Lichtenwald, Coatta ; Ciampini, Novak, Cruice ; Sullivan, Vecchione, Pontarelli ; Hatch, Bennett, Wilkins
Union College defenseman JEFF TAYLOR (2), the homegrown freshman from Clifton Park, New York, who made a very nice play in the offensive zone to set up a tap-in goal for teammate Daniel Carr against the Huskies and now counts seven assists after 19 NCAA appearances this season, competes for the puck with St. Cloud State left wing JOEY BENIK (9) during the NCAA non-conference series at the Herb Brooks National Hockey Center in St. Cloud, Minnesota.