PSU Men’s Ice Hockey rallies to top Worcester State in OT

PSU Men’s Ice Hockey rallies to top Worcester State in OT

Barone nets game-winner, Volonnino scores twice in MASCAC win

            PLYMOUTH, N.H. – Sophomore JR Barone (West Chester, Pa.) scored the game-winning goal 2:53 seconds into overtime and senior Matt Volonnino (Hackettstown, N.J.) potted a pair of power play goals to lead Plymouth State University to a 4-3 win over Worcester State University in a Massachusetts State Collegiate Athletic Conference (MASCAC) men's ice hockey game at Hanaway Rink on Thursday night.

            Volonnino and sophomore Tim Drevitch (Oxford, N.J.) traded power play goals in the first period, but the Lancers took the lead late in the second. The Panthers cashed in with the man-advantage just over a minute into the third period on a tally from senior Tim Perron (Northborough, Mass.), but Drevitch tallied his second of the game to put the visitors right back in the lead just 1:48 later. Volonnino knotted the game with his second power play strike with 3:25 to play to force overtime.

            In the extra frame, senior Evan Morelli (Reading, Mass.) made four saves as the Panthers killed off a penalty and Barone netted the game-winner on a breakaway.

            With the victory Plymouth State improves to 11-6-3 overall and regains first place in the MASCAC with an 8-3-2 mark. Worcester State falls to 10-8-1 and 6-6-1 in the MASCAC.


            The Final Score:

            Plymouth State 4, Worcester State 3 (OT)



            Plymouth State (11-6-3, 8-3-2 MASCAC)

            Worcester State (10-8-1, 6-6-1 MASCAC)


            How it Happened:

            * Sophomore Jake Gerbner (Havertown, Pa.) nearly got the Panthers on the board in the first period when he collected his own rebound, spun, and fired a shot from the nearside goal line that banked off the goalie and sat outside the net before being swept to safety.

            * Senior Ryan Stevens (Colleyville, Texas) had a chance of his own shortly after when he skated around a defender along the far side and slung a wrist shot off the post.

            * Plymouth State was finally rewarded with a power play strike at 8:00 when Volonnino slapped a one-timer from the nearside off a feed through the slot.

            * Worcester State took advantage of a late power play at 19:01 on a wrister from Drevitch from just above the far side goal line that slipped past the pad of Morelli to know the game at one.

            * The Lancers grabbed the lead at the 17:30 mark in the second period after freshman Nick Pennucci (Worcester, Mass.) carried the puck along the nearside slot and threw a backhand shot through a screen and into the net.

            * PSU tied the game just 1:07 into the third period on another power play when Perron's slap shot from the point beat the WSU goaltender to the glove side.

            * The visitors retook the lead on a 4-on-4 when Drevitch found himself alone in the slot and ripped a wrist shot glove side for his sixth goal of the year.

            * Volonnino evened the score once again for the Panthers at the 16:35 mark after he managed to poke home the puck during a scrum in front of the net.

            * Plymouth State killed off a penalty early in the overtime frame, with Morelli making a number of key stops, to set up Barone's game-winner.


            Inside the Numbers:

            * Plymouth State outshot the Lancers by a 37-25 margin.

            * Morelli collected 22 saves for the Panthers to improve to 9-5-3, while sophomore Aaron Callan (South Lyon, Mich.) stopped 33 shots for the Lancers but dropped to 8-4-0.

            * The Panthers' power play unit cashed in on 3-of-5 opportunities, while Worcester State went 1-of-3 with the man advantage.

            * Volonnino leads the Panthers with 14 goals on the year, while Perron (one goal, two assists) and senior Michael Covach (Shillington, Pa.) (three assists) each recorded three points.

            * The win was Plymouth State's first of the year when trailing entering the third period.


            Straight from the Coach's Mouth:

            "I thought we fougt for offensive flow and couldn't find it until the third period," said head coach Craig Russell. "Our power play moved the puck well and got plenty of shots through, which created secondary opportunities. We also had to make an adjustment to our defensive zone structure to allow us to conserve some energy. We've had so many injuries that it's been tough for the guys, but I'm proud of how they battled back and remained composed throughout the game."


            Up Next:

            * Both teams continue MASCAC play on Saturday (Feb. 2). Plymouth State heads to Fitchburg State for a 5:00 p.m. contest, while the Lancers visit Framingham State at 7:50 p.m.




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