HOOKSETT, N.H. – Freshman Deni Bojadzic (Gothenburg, Sweden) scored two third-period goals and classmate Karl Helgesson (Lerum, Sweden) made 39 saves Saturday evening to lead the Plymouth State University men’s hockey team to a 4-2 victory over Southern New Hampshire University in opening round action of the PAL “Stovepipe” Tournament. PSU improved to 2-2-1 and will face Saint Anselm College in the tournament championship game Sunday (11/28) at 4 p.m. SNHU suffered its first loss of the year and fell to 4-1-0.
The Panthers, who are making their fifth appearance in the 10-year history of the tournament, will be making their first appearance in the championship game. SNHU will take on Assumption College in the consolation game at 1 p.m. Saint Anselm, which has claimed two of the last three championships, defeated Assumption, 4-0, earlier Saturday.
PSU took a 2-0 lead into the third period, only to have the Penmen knot the game at 2-2 after freshmen Matt Lemay (Biddeford, Maine) and Josh Douglas (Mississauga, Ont.) scored just 36 seconds apart midway through the final frame. The Panthers regained the lead just 1:15 after Douglas tied the game when Bojadzic broke in alone on SNHU netminder Martin Stehl (Goldbar, Wash.) and slid a shot under Stehl for his third goal of the year.
The Penmen pressured the PSU net throughout the remainder of the period, but could not get the equalizer past Helgesson, who stopped a point blank slapshot by SNHU defender Justin Hurley (Peabody, Mass.) with 10 seconds left. SNHU’s Brent Bousquet (East Longmeadow, Mass.) also clanged a wrist shot off the crossbar with 8:30 left to play.
Bojadzic secured the win, PSU’s first over the Penmen since the 1996-97 season, when he scored into an open net just before the final horn.
Junior Nick DeBaggis (Topsfield, Mass.) gave the Panthers a 1-0 lead with an unassisted goal with 4:04 left in the first period, and PSU doubled its lead when freshman Goose Lacroix (Moretown, Vt.) scored with just :04 seconds left in the first period. The Panthers nearly struck again in the final minute of the second period, but Stehl denied junior Dennis Kane‘s (Westford, Mass.) breakaway attempt.
The Penmen outshot the Panthers 22-4 in the third period and finished with a 41-17 edge in shots overall. Helgesson, making his first career start, finished with 39 saves, while Stehl stopped 13 for the Penmen.
SNHU entered the game averaging over seven goals a game and had scored at least six goals in each of its first four games of the season.
(Courtesy of SNHU Sports Information)
— 30 —