It was one of those nights at Appleton Arena...and as a result, St. Lawrence University's hockey team is still looking for that elusive 1000th win for its hockey program history and the end of what is now a four-game losing streak.
The Saints outplayed Vermont in nearly every facet of the game at Appleton on Saturday, but the Catamounts scored the goals, taking a 5-2 decision which drops the Saints to 7-8-2 overall and puts the 1000th win on hold until early in the new year.
The Catamounts, who came in averaging just 1.71 goals per game had their biggest offensive night of the season against the Saints, who were playing without senior captain Kyle Flanagan, one of the nation's leading scorers, who was out with an injury, one of three regulars who missed the game for the Saints. Vermont improved to 4-8-3 with its second win in the last three outings, while the Saints have now scored two or fewer goals in each of the last four games.
The Saints really deserved a better fate. SLU dominated play for big stretches of the game, but UVM scored the goals, netting the only goal of the first period on its second shot and tacking on two more in the first 7:43 of the second to take a 3-0 lead and chase Saint starter Matt Weninger, who had his consecutive minutes played streak snapped at 1658 when he left at 7:43 of the second.
Chris McCarthy opened the scoring for the Cats as he snapped a wrist shot under the crossbar after a faceoff win in the Saint end by Jacob Fallon at 9:27 of the second. Kyle Reynolds made it a 2-0 game 3:52 into the second when he put back a second rebound for his first goal of the year and Nick Luukko stepped into the offense and scored on a short side goal on the power play at 7:43 for the 3-0 Vermont lead.
Saint junior Greg Carey scored his 12th of the season and the 50th of his career with a snap shot off a feed by George Hughes to finally get a puck past Vermont freshman goaltender Brody Hoffman at 15:00 of the second, but UVM got that right back when Fallon scored his third of the year 2:14 later on a shot which went into the net off the glove of Saint rookie backup goalie Kyle MacDonald, who was making his first collegiate appearance.
The Saints cut it to 4-2 9:29 into the third on Kyle Essery's third of the year on a rush up the slot, but while the Saints had a number of chances, Hoffman, who finished with a career-high 39 saves, thwarted most of them and a couple of posts foiled the others. The Cats sealed the win when Matt White scored his third of the season into the empty net with Vermont on a power play with 1:16 to go in regulation.
Weninger had five saves and MacDonald nine for the Saints, who outshot UVM 41-19 and were scoreless on six power plays while Vermont scored on two of three.