NORTHFIELD, Vt. — Plattsburgh State scored twice in a span of 1:03 Saturday and kept St. Thomas from finding the net the whole game.
Mark Constantine and Connor Gorman had second-period goals as the Cardinals blanked the Tommies 2-0 in the consolation game of the PrimeLink Great Northern Shootout men’s hockey tournament at Kreitzburg Arena.
“I thought we played really good defensively from the goalie on out. I thought we did a good job,” Plattsburgh coach Bob Emery said. “I think the best part of our defense was our puck possession in the offensive zone. I thought we really controlled the puck in the offensive zone.”
Norwich edged Middlebury 5-4 in the championship game.
There were few scoring chances in the opening period of the first game as the teams combined for just four shots on goal. But Emery thought it was a good start for the Cardinals (6-2).
“I thought we played great in the first period,” Emery said. “We broke out of our zone really well, and we moved the puck in the neutral zone all night.”
Their offense got going in the second. Constantine broke the scoreless tie 3:27 in with an assist from Gorman. Then Gorman gave the Cards a 2-0 cushion just over a minute later by chipping in a rebound on the power play.
“Like coach says, you just gotta drive the net,” Gorman said. “Our defense played great tonight, getting the puck up to the forwards. We found some lanes to cut through and make some nice passes. Some good puck movement all around.”
St. Thomas also trailed 2-0 after two periods Friday, and it came back to tie the game in the third. But Saturday, Plattsburgh continued to hold the Tommies (5-4-1) off the scoreboard in the final period. While Emery said the Cardinals made mental mistakes on Day 1 of the tournament, he said they were smarter with the puck against St. Thomas.
Sam Foley made his first start of the season in net for Plattsburgh and picked up the win by stopping 15 shots.
“I thought we did a good job clearing pucks in front of Sam, and he was equal to the task. I’m happy for him,” Emery said. “He’s a kid who works hard, and this was only his second start in his career and he gets the shutout. Everyone on the team has a place in their heart for Sam, and we’re happy for him.”
St. Thomas also used a backup goalie, Tyrone Simcoe, who made 19 saves.
For the Cardinals, it was the second straight weekend that they dropped the first game and came back with a shutout. They’d like to stop needing to bounce back.
“I just think we need to come out stronger on Friday nights. Every night we gotta come out strong,” Gorman said. “Sam did a great job (Saturday) stepping in. We all did a good job playing defense; that’s what wins the game.
“Obviously every game’s important, and we gotta put that in our mind. And we know that.”
Gorman made the All-Tournament Team.
Colin Mulvey netted two goals in the final five minutes of the second game to lift Norwich to its second straight PrimeLink title. Norwich took a 2-1 lead early in the second period, but Middlebury later responded with two goals within a minute. Matt Silcoff tipped in Evan Neugold’s shot from the point at 14:17, and then Michael Longo got to a loose puck just outside the crease and steered it in.
Brendan McGovern made it 4-2 in the third, but the Cadets came back. Travis Janke scored during a delayed penalty, and during the power play, Janke got the puck at the right side of the net and fed Mulvey, who one-timed it in to knot the score.
In the closing seconds, Janke found Mulvey again, and he slammed the game-winner in the open left side of the net with 6.7 left on the clock.
Chris Czarnota earned the win with 19 saves. Mulvey was named Most Valuable Player.
Plattsburgh 2, St. Thomas 0
St. Thomas 0 0 0 — 0
Plattsburgh 0 2 0 — 2
Second period- 1, PSU, Constantine (Gorman), 3:27. 2, PSU, Gorman (Smith), 4:30 (pp). Penalties: Mahoney, UST (holding), 3:37. Mahoney, UST (tripping), 9:21. Mahoney, UST (10-minute misconduct), 9:21. Constantine, PSU (hooking), 18:53.
Third period- Penalties: N. Jensen, PSU (hooking), 0:49. A. Jensen, PSU (tripping), 1:25. Baker, UST (interference), 2:35. Walker, UST (interference), 14:30. Horgan, UST (cross-checking), 17:42.
Shots on goal:
St. Thomas 1 8 6 — 15
Plattsburgh 3 11 7 — 21
Goaltenders (shots-saves): Simcoe, UST, 21-19. Foley, PSU, 15-15.
Power plays (goals-opportunities): St. Thomas 0-3, Plattsburgh 1-5.
Norwich 5, Middlebury 4
Middlebury 1 2 1 — 4
Norwich 1 1 3 — 5
First period- 1, Nor, Duszynski (Gorman, Thomas), 12:25 (pp). 2, Mid, Silcoff (Wiggens), 14:58. Penalties: Longo, Mid (tripping), 10:55.
Second period- 3, Nor, Allan (Mulvey, Hale), 6:41. 4, Mid, Silcoff (Neugold, Ordway), 14:17 (pp). 5, Mid, Longo (Brown, Brazier), 14:59. Penalties: Allan, Nor (hooking), 13:30. Frick, Mid (interference), 14:56. Thomas, Nor (hooking), 16:51. Freyre, Mid (cross-checking), 19:16.
Third period- 6, Mid, McGovern, 12:22. 7, Nor, Janke (Allan), 13:51. 8, Nor, Mulvey (Janke, Thieda), 15:48 (pp). 9, Nor, Mulvey (Janke), 19:53. Penalties: Donahoe, Mid (holding),13:51.
Shots on goal:
Middlebury 8 5 10 — 23
Norwich 8 10 12 — 30
Goaltenders (shots-saves): BonDurant, Mid, 30-25. Czarnota, Nor, 23-19. Power plays (goals-opportunities): Middlebury 1-2, Norwich 2-4.
Email Courtney Lewis