No. 3 Cardinals edge SUNY Potsdam Bears men's hockey team, 4-3
PLATTSBURGH -- The SUNY Potsdam men’s hockey team (6-11-2, 4-6 SUNYAC) erased a three-goal deficit before falling 4-3 to third-ranked Plattsburgh (13-2-4, 8-1-1) on Friday night.
Senior assistant captain Matt Viola (Toronto, Ontario/Vaughan Vipers) had three assists and senior goaltender Kevin McFarland (St. Louis, Mo./Woodstock Slammers) made 40 saves for the Bears.The Cardinals started fast and owned the first period. Just 1:48 into the contest. Ryan Craig got Plattsburgh on the board.
Kyle Taylor doubled the lead at the 9:42 mark and Michael Cassidy made it 3-0 at 10:15. Despite the score McFarland made several key saves to keep the game from getting away.
During the first intermission Potsdam Head Coach Chris Bernard, challenged his team.
“I let the guys know that their effort and execution was not to our standards,” said Bernard. “To a man, they responded and showed a lot of guts and heart.”
Viola set up sophomore forward Mike Arnold (Didsbury, Alberta/Kingston Voyageurs) on the power play to start the Bears’ comeback at 11:42. Only 42 seconds later, freshman defenseman Erick Ware (Huntsville, Ala./Kenai River Brown Bears) made it a one-goal game with assists from freshman defenseman Dan McCamey (Dayton, Ohio/Minnesota Flying Aces) and Viola.
Potsdam outshot the Cardinals 22-14 in the middle stanza. Senior captain Sy Nutkevitch (Montreal, Quebec/Cornwall Colts) scored on the man advantage just 29 seconds into the third period to tie the game at 3-3.
Viola and sophomore defenseman Nick Avgerinos (Bolton, Ontario/Georgetown Raiders) recorded the assists. Both teams played a clean physical final 20 minutes, but it was a power play that made the difference in the game.
After a Bears’ elbowing penalty at 16:19, it took the Cardinals just 11 seconds to net the game-winner. Barry Roytman scored at the 16:30 mark to put Plattsburgh out front for good.
Bernard pulled McFarland with 1:31 to go, but Potsdam was unable to draw even. Mathieu Cadieux finished with 32 saves to earn the victory for the Cardinals.
Potsdam was 2-4 on the power play and Plattsburgh was just 1-6. The Bears return home for the first of their final two home games of the season on Friday, Feb. 3, against Buffalo State at 7 p.m.