Saturday, February 18, 2017

Hutchins gets hat trick in "must win" over Potsdam

The ice hockey team put together a dominant performance at a key point in the season on Friday evening, downing Potsdam by a score of 8-3. The victory combined with a Cortland loss slides them into the sixth and final playoff spot in the SUNYAC conference with one game remaining.

Freshman standout Connor Hutchins wasted no time getting Brockport on the board, scoring just 0:21 seconds into the contest off an assist from Aidan Verbeke to give the Golden Eagles early momentum. Doc Gentzler capitalized on that momentum just 0:28 seconds later, taking a pass from David Horan and Bryan Carville to give the squad a 2-0 lead.

The scoring onslaught did not stop there, as Hutchins buried his second of the contest at the 2:30 mark, with assists going to Verbeke and Nick Palumbo. The North Richland Hills, Texas native earned his first career hat trick with Brockport's next tally, using just 11:33 of the first period to net his three goals.

Brian Hurlimann joined in the action at the 13:19 mark, scoring his fourth of the season off of assists from Dylan Shapiro and Tim Kielich. The team finished the first period with five goals, the most they've recorded in a period this season.

Jake Taylor recorded the lone goal of the second stanza, giving Brockport a 6-1 lead when he took a breakaway pass from Chris Pollini and Doc Gentzler and beat the Potsdam goaltender over the shoulder. The goal was the seniors 66th point of his career, as he will play in his 100th collegiate game on senior day tomorrow.

Tim Kielich put Brockport up 7-1 just 01:27 into the third off dishes from Hurlimann and Shapiro, before Zac Sikich capped off the Brockport scoring with a short-handed goal at 09:18. Potsdam was able to add two tally's in the final stanza, bringing the final score to 8-3.

Not to be forgotten was goaltender Matt Schneider, who stopped 26 of the 29 Bear shots he faced for a .897 save percentage.

With the victory, the Golden Eagles now control their own playoff destiny. A win or tie against Plattsburgh tomorrow will allow them to hold onto the final playoff spot, and a Cortland tie or loss will do the same.