FITCHBURG, Mass. - The Fitchburg State ice hockey team registered its eighth straight victory Saturday evening with a 5-4 victory over Plymouth State University in a Massachusetts State College Athletic Conference (MASCAC) men's ice hockey game.
The outcome marked the ninth straight victory for Fitchburg State as the MASCAC-leading Falcons improved to 13-3-1 overall and 9-2-0 in conference play. PSU had its five-game winning streak and dropped to 11-7 overall and 7-4 in the MASCAC, good for fourth place.
The Falcon line of senior Andrew Hutton (Brewster, Mass.), junior Chris Riggs (Sewell, N.J.) and sophomore Kris Threlkeld (Centerville, Ohio) paced Fitchburg State, combining for seven points in the contest. Hutton led all scorers with a game-high three points (2 goals, 1 assist), while Riggs (1 goal, 1 assist) and Threlkeld (2 assists) each added two.
The Panthers continued to pressure the Falcons defense down the stretch with a pair of late third-period goals from junior Sean Buckley (Sagamore Beach, Mass.) but markers from Falcon sophomore Kevin McCready (Poughkeepsie, N.Y.) and freshman Tucker Callen (Annadale, N.J.) proved to be enough for Fitchburg State's ninth conference victory.
Fitchburg State opened the scoring midway through the first as Riggs and Hutton connected for back-to-back scores for the early 2-0 advantage. Riggs found the back of the net for his 10th score of the season at the 12:43 mark, before Hutton closed the period with a successful penalty shot for his eighth marker of the year.
The Falcons continued to maintain its offensive prowess in the second frame, as Hutton connected for the Falcons third consecutive goal at the 13:57 mark. The senior forward collected his ninth goal of the season and second tally of the game off feeds from linemen Threlkeld and Riggs.
Plymouth State did not go quietly however, posting four scores over the final 22 minutes of play, including three in the third period. Freshman Tim Visich (Mount Pleasant, Mich.) broke the Panthers scoring silence in the second period with his second goal of the season at the 18:13 mark, while Chad Wilhelm (Plymouth, Mass.) added a Plymouth State tally at 9:41 of the third.
Fitchburg State held a slim 26-24 advantage in shots on target and junior goaltender Robert Vorse (Leominster, Mass.) notched 20 saves in net for his seventh win of the year. Senior Aaron Runner (Alpharetta, Ga.) stopped 21 shots for the Panthers.
Fitchburg State will hit the ice again Thursday as it hosts Salem State at 7 p.m. Plymouth State will host Westfield State on Thursday at 6 p.m.
(Courtesy of Fitchburg State Sports Information)
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