PLATTSBURGH — Mike Grace’s shot from just inside the blue line broke a 1-1 tie in the third period — and opened the floodgates.
Plattsburgh State, which had been peppering the Morrisville net most of the night to little avail, added five more goals before the period ended to open its SUNY Athletic Conference men’s hockey season with a 6-1 win Friday at Stafford Ice Arena.
“I gotta give Morrisville a lot of credit. They played great defense for two periods,” Plattsburgh coach Bob Emery said. “They did a great job, especially in that second period, in front of their goalie.
“And one thing about defense is it’s really hard for a team to sustain 60 minutes of solid defense. So I just think over time they broke a little bit.”
Grace finished with a goal and an assist, and Alex Jensen scored twice and earned a helper.
Plattsburgh outshot Morrisville 19-6 in the second period but couldn’t get the puck past Jakob Rasmussen.
Ryan Farnan had a chance on a power play in the opening minutes, flipping the puck high from the doorstep, but it was knocked away. The line of Alex Jensen, Nick Jensen and Mark Constantine put together a good chance on the rush late in the period, but Constantine’s shot was met with a pad save by Rasmussen.
Grace gave the Cardinals (1-0) their first lead of the game 6:49 into the third during a power play. He released a long shot not expecting it to make it all the way through.
“I just had an open shot. I saw a few of our guys up front, so I figured I might as well put it on net, shoot for a rebound,” the senior defenseman said. “We were putting pucks on net all day; we knew the guy was giving up a few rebounds. So just figured I’d throw it on net, see what happens.”