WATERVILLE VALLEY, N.H. – Plymouth State University’s hockey team came from behind with a pair of third-period goals Tuesday night at Waterville Valley Ice Arena, and the Panthers and Golden Bears of Western New England College skated to a 4-4 overtime time in the ECAC Northeast Conference season finale for both schools.
WNEC led 2-1 after one period and 4-2 after two, but PSU got a power play goal from sophomore leading scorer Dennis Kane (Westford, Mass.) at 4:13 of the third and an even-strength goal from junior Kyle Poirier (Concord, N.H.) at 9:05 to forge the deadlock.
PSU completes the season with an 8-15-1 overall record under first-year head coach Brett Tryder, and a 4-11-1 mark in the Northeast. WNEC wraps up its season at 9-13-3 overall and 4-9-3 in conference play. The Panthers had 18 of their 24 games decided by two goals or fewer, but this was the first that ended in a tie.
Junior Mike Nutcher (Hamden, Conn.) scored a pair of goals to lead the Golden Bears, while junior Kevin Leonard (Tewksbury, Mass.) added a goal and two assists. Junior Mike Szmeiter (Plainville, Conn.) also scored once for the visitors, and sophomore Pat Henderson (Marlton, N.J.) collected a pair of assists. Leonard finishes the season as the WNEC team scoring leader with 14 goals and 32 points.
Kane, Poirier and junior Michal Bodnar (Olomouc, Czech Rep.) each finished with a goal and an assist for the Panthers, with junior defenseman Max Wernert (Greenwich, Mass.) also scoring once. Kane finishes the season as PSU’s scoring leader with 16 goals and 29 points, the most productive offensive season for a Panther since Eric Ryan registered 17 goals and 33 points in 1998-99.
Senior goaltender Mike Newall (Albuquerque, N.M.) made 31 saves for the visitors, and senior Michael Mansson (Wilson, Wyo.) made 33 saves for PSU.
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