Ceasar makes career-high 66 saves for Panthers
WESTFIELD, Mass. – Plymouth State University secured its grip on first place in the Massachusetts State Collegiate Athletic Conference (MASCAC) men's ice hockey standings Saturday evening by rallying from an early 1-0 deficit to post a 5-2 win over Westfield State University at Amelia Park.
The teams combined for a remarkable 125 shots on goal, including 68 by the home team and 57 by the visitors. Panther junior netminder Gordon Ceasar (Oak Park, Calif.) finished with a career-high 66 saves, including 26 in a scoreless third period to preserve the win.
Westfield jumped out to an early 1-0 lead when a shot from junior forward Dalton Jay took an odd bounce and slid in behind Caesar. Plymouth State responded with four straight goals and never looked back. PSU improves to 5-2-1 overall, 5-0-1 in the MASCAC, while Westfield, which could have taken over first place in the league with a win, drops to 7-3 overall, 4-2 in conference play.
The first two PSU goals came off Owl miscues in the defensive zone. Sophomore Ryan Callahan (Londonderry, N.H.) scored after an Owls giveaway in their defensive zone, and freshman Riley Flanagan (Weymouth, Mass.) tallied just three minutes later after another breakdown. A snappy wrister from Mike Economos (Crystal Lake, Ill.) with 3:05 left in the first gave the visitors a 3-1 lead after the first period.
Callahan added his second of the night at the 11:23 mark of the second period to boost the Panthers lead to 4-1. Westfield cut the lead back to 4-2 with a power play tally from Maxime Richard, but Plymouth State responded just 27 seconds later with a back breaking goal from sophomomore Ian McGilvrey (Omaha, Neb.) at 9:59 of the second to cap the scoring.
Caesar had a big third period, stonewalling the Owls at every turn. He stopped 26 shots without allowing a goal. PSU managed 57 shots on the Owls, who split time between Ian Perrier and Jonathan Loparco in goal; both made 26 saves.
The Owls will be back in action on Wednesday night, hosting Stonehill a college in a non-conference matchup. PSU plays again Friday in a non-league match-up at New England College.
(Courtesy of Westfield State Sports Information)
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