Bears men's hockey battle Spartans to 2-2 tie
CASTLETON, VT.—Castleton University (5-8-2) scored an extra attacker goal with 29 seconds left to forge a 2-2 tie with the SUNY Potsdam men's hockey team (7-5-3) on Tuesday evening. Junior forward Mike Sweeney (Pittsburgh, Pa./PAL Islanders) and freshman defenseman Jon Venter (Guilford, Conn./Syracuse Stars) each scored for the Bears and junior goalie Nate Skidmore (Syracuse, N.Y./Buffalo Jr. Sabres) made 26 saves.
Potsdam controlled the first period, which included two power plays. The Bears outshot the Spartans 15-4, but couldn't beat Castleton goalie Ryan Mulder, who kept the game scoreless.Sweeney put Potsdam up 1-0 at the 9:02 mark of the second period. Sophomore forward Tyler Young (Massena, N.Y./Kanata Lasers) assisted on the goal. The rest of the period was filled with penalties. At 12:20, the Bears were awarded a penalty shot, but Mulder came up big again. Potsdam couldn't pad its lead on its three ensuing power play opportunities. The Bears fired 13 shots on Mulder to the Spartans' seven on Skidmore and led 1-0 after 40 minutes.
Castleton evened the score at 3:30 of the third period and was finally able to generate some pressure. However, Venter netted the next marker with assists from junior forward Ben Mariano (Harrisburg, Pa./Hartford Wolfpack) and freshman forward Jacob Juron (Latham, N.Y./South Shore Kings). Potsdam went on the defensive in the last half of the period, attempting to kill off two power plays. The Bears succeeded in the first, but a Spartan man advantage and extra attacker proved enough to tie the game as Ryan O'Toole struck with 29 seconds left in regulation. Skidmore made 12 saves in the final 20 minutes.
Each team registered three shots in overtime, but had to settle for a draw.
Mulder made 36 saves to salvage a point for the Spartans. Potsdam was 0-for-5 on the power play and Castleton went 1-for-5.
The Bears head to Utica on Saturday for a 7 p.m. contest with the No. 10 Pioneers.