WATERVILLE VALLEY, N.H. - Junior Chris Chambers (Crofton, Md.) scored the game-winning goal one minute, 50 seconds into overtime Saturday night to give Plymouth State University to a 5-4 upset victory over Johnson & Wales University in an exciting ECAC Northeast Conference men's ice hockey game at Waterville Valley Arena.
Chambers' game-winner capped a four-goal Panther comeback after the team trailed 4-1 late in the second period. PSU got one goal back before the end of the second and added a pair of third-period strikes to send the game into the extra session. The Panthers stopped a two-game losing skid and moved to 9-10-2 overall and 5-6-2 in the ECAC Northeast, while the Wildcats had a two-game win streak stopped and fell to 8-9-2 overall and 7-3-1 in conference play.
The teams traded goals late in the first period, junior Stephen Pfeiffer (Queens, N.Y.) scoring for JWU on the power play at 16:26 and freshman Justin Phenney (Brunswick, Ohio) countering for PSU a minute and a half later. PSU out-shot JWU 19-11 in the opening period, but the score was 1-1.
Johnson & Wales scored three unanswered goals in the second period to take the 4-1 lead. Junior Kevin Marchesi (South Portland, Maine) tallied a power play goal at 3:12, freshman Zach Hamilton (O'Fallon, Ill.) scored his first of the year at 7:29, and sophomore Joe Simeone (Cranston, R.I.) added an unassisted goal at 15:45.
Senior Dave Dufresne (Dracut, Mass.) gave the Panthers hope when he scored with 1:10 left in the second period to cut the deficit to two goals going into the third. JWU was assessed a major penalty in the third period, and PSU capitalized with a power play goal at 9:35 by sophomore Kyle Tobin (Kanata, Ont.) to cut the margin to one goal. Just over a minute later, and 22 seconds after the major penalty expired, sophomore Bryan Horrigan (Brookfield, Wis.) netted the equalizer for PSU to tie the game at 4-4 and set up the overtime.
The home team finished with a 51-35 advantage in shots on goal. JWU was 2-for-3 in power play chances while PSU was 1-for-4 with the man advantage. Freshman goalie Allen Schneider (Strongsville, Ohio) earned the victory with 31 saves, while sophomore JR Woodland (Picton, Ont.) made 46 saves in the Wildcat goal.
Plymouth State continues its three-game home stand Wednesday with a conference game at Waterville Valley against Suffolk University (6:00 p.m.) JWU plays at Fitchburg Wednesday at 7:00 p.m.
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