MEN’S HOCKEY ENDS SEASON
February 28, 2011
The Middlebury College men’s hockey team’s streak of 11 straight trips to the NESCAC Championship game has come to an end, after Colby topped the Panthers 2-1 in a quarterfinal game in Kenyon Arena. Third-seeded Middlebury ends its season with an 11-8-6 record, while sixth-seeded Colby improves to 12-10-2.
Colby jumped out to a 1-0 lead just 3:52 into the first period with the fourth of the season by Dan Nelson. Billy Crinnion’s shot from the right wing was stopped with a pad save from junior John Yanchek (Hillsborough, N.J.), before Nelson pounced on the rebound with an open net. First-year player Louis Belisle (Repentigny, Que.) had a pair of nice looks for the Panthers at the 15:30 mark, but both were denied by Cody McKinney.
The Mules doubled their lead 6:33 into the second period, when Karl Burns scored his sixth of the year from the high slot, redirecting a centering pass from Chris Buonomo. First-year player Nick BonDurant (Macedon, N.Y.) came on in relief of Yanchek (26:33, 2 GA, 10 saves) following the tally. McKinney stopped sophomore Brett Brazier (Okemos, Mich.) in transition at the 11:00 mark, followed by a pair of saves by BonDurant on Jack Bartlett from point-blank range. McKinney came up big again with 7:00 minutes remaining, stopping Brazier with a big glove save. The second period ended with Middlebury leading 23-16 in shots, but trailing 2-0.
Middlebury came on strong in the third, with sophomore Chris Brown (Quincy, Mass.) breaking in all alone before he was unable to get off a shot. The Panthers went on the power play at 5:10, with senior Chaz Svoboda (Verdun, Que.) scoring his third of the year at 6:24 to make it a 2-1 game. Sophomore Mathieu Castonguay’s (St. Edouard, Que.) shot from the point was saved by McKinney, with Svoboda scoring on his second attempt for the goal.
Middlebury pulled BonDurant (11 saves) for the game’s final 1:38, earning five shots on goal, but could not sneak one past McKinney (37 saves) to tie the game. The Panthers finished the contest with a 38-23 shots advantage.
• Men’s hockey final record: 11-8-6