WATERVILLE VALLEY, N.H. - Sophomore Aaron Keller (Concord, N.H.) notched his first career hat trick Saturday night, leading Plymouth State College to a 5-1 victory over Assumption College in an ECAC Northeast Conference hockey game at Waterville Valley Ice Arena.
The win improves PSC's record to 4-9-1 overall and 4-5-0 in the ECAC Northeast, while the Ice Dogs drop to 6-6-1 overall and 1-4-1 in conference play. The Panthers are now tied for fifth among the 13 Division III teams in the Northeast.
Keller led a Panther contingent that connected on 4-of-6 power play attempts. He single-handedly gave PSC a 2-0 first-period lead, scoring a power play goal at 11:08 and an even-strength marker at 14:20. Sophomore Rian Murray (Arlington, Mass.) countered for Assumption to keep it a one-goal game.
Sophomore Brian Croft (Penacook, N.H.) tallied the only goal of the second period, a Panther PPG at 14:41. Senior Aaron Fifield (Northfield Falls, Vt.) added his first of the season with the man advantage to open the third-period scoring, and Keller finished off his hat trick with a power play goal at 18:20. He now has five goals and five assists on the season.
Seniors Chris Tortorella (Larchmont, N.Y) and John Hornor (Marlton, N.J.) each contributed two assists for the evening for PSC.
PSC senior goalie Larry Forgue (Nashua, N.H.) stopped 31 of 32 shots to earn the victory, while senior L.J. Goldblatt (Norwich, Conn.) made 28 stops for Assumption.
The Panthers play an exhibition game Wednesday at the Westfield State Club team (7:00 p.m.). The next varsity action is next Saturday at Wentworth in an ECAC Northeast conference game (2:00 p.m.). The Ice Dogs play Thursday at Framingham State (7:00 p.m.).