Zuccaro scores for Panthers on Senior Night
PLYMOUTH, N.H. – The Plymouth State University men's ice hockey rallied from a pair of one-goal deficits to earn a 3-3 tie with Salem State University in a Massachusetts State Collegiate Athletic Conference (MASCAC) game on Senior Night at Hanaway Rink on Saturday night.
PSU moves to 17-4-2 (13-2-1 MASCAC), while Salem State moves to 8-10-5 (5-8-3 MASCAC).
Freshman JR Barone (West Chester, Pa.) put early pressure on Salem State senior goalie Jason Pucciarelli (Newmarket, Ont.) with multiple shots in the opening minute of play, but it was the Vikings who would score the game's first goal.
Junior Parker Wood (Rochester Hills, Mich.) collected a loose puck from the bottom of the left circle, skated across ice to the right faceoff dot, then passed through the crease to senior Michael Casale (Stoney Creek, Ont.) who fired to the near side top corner for a 1-0 lead at the 6:04 mark.
Senior Chris Zuccaro (Hudson, N.H.) evened the game with a power play tally just over two minutes later. Freshman Marc Happy (Sterling, Mass.) blasted a slapshot from just outside the right circle that Zuccaro deflected past Pucciarelli at 8:15. It was Zuccaro's eighth tally of the year.
Freshman Peter Laviolette (Nashville, Tenn.) put the home team in front with his sixth goal of the season 3:38 into the second period. Junior Tim Perron (Northborough, Mass.) pushed a pass through the neutral zone along the half boards to Laviolette, who got behind the Salem defense and snuck the puck into the five-hole to make it 2-1.
But the lead wouldn't hold up for long. Junior Connor Irving (Beverly, Mass.) held the puck along the left side into the Vikings' offensive zone on a 3-on-2 breakout, then passed cross ice to freshman Dan Shea (Hingham, Mass.) who fired a wrist shot low to the far post, evening the score at 2-apiece at the 6:56 mark.
The Vikings would take a 3-2 lead late in the period. With the puck behind the Panther net, junior goalie Evan Morelli (Reading, Mass.) went to cover up, but senior Ryan Wilkinson (Burlington, Ont.) poked the puck free and classmate Casey Miller (Billerica, Mass.) fired to the far post with 3:50 to go in the second.
Salem State had an opportunity to take a two-goal lead early in the third period when it was awarded a penalty shot. Senior Daniel Campbell (Waterloo, Ont.) skated from the right circle across ice before attempting to push the puck back to the near post, but Morelli was able to make the stop.
Four minutes later junior Ryan Stevens (Colleyville, Texas) retied the game with his ninth score of the season. Skating with the man advantage, Perron fired a shot from the point and Stevens slipped in from the right side to blast the rebound into the open net with 9:04 left in the game.
The Panthers had a third power play opportunity in the final minutes of the period, but Salem's penalty kill unit did its job to preserve the tie.
Plymouth outshot the Vikings 5-1 in the overtime period but neither team was able to net a game-winner.
Pucciarelli finished with 37 saves to move to 8-10-5, while Morelli had 22 stops to go to 14-2-1. The Panthers went 2-of-3 on the power play, while Salem State was 0-for-3.
Prior to the game Plymouth State recognized Zuccaro and senior Caleb O'Brien (Saginaw, Mich.) in a brief on-ice ceremony as part of the Senior Night festivities.
Plymouth State will travel to Framingham State University for a 4:50 p.m. contest next Saturday (Feb. 17), while Salem State plays at Fitchburg State University on Thursday (Feb. 15) night (7:00 p.m.).
|PSU seniors (L-R) Chris Zuccaro and Caleb O'Brien with their families|
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