WORCESTER, Mass. -- Junior Mason Nichols's (Oviedo, Fla.) goal with six seconds remaining in the second period snapped a 1-1 tie and lifted UMass Dartmouth to a 4-1 Massachusetts State Collegiate Athletic Conference ice hockey victory over Worcester State Thursday evening at the Worcester Ice Center.
The visiting Corsairs (10-8-1, 7-4-1 MASCAC), who improved to 5-1-1 in their last seven outings with the triumph, jumped out to a 1-0 lead just 5:21 into the contest on junior Steven Leonard's (Rockaway Park, N.Y.) power play goal, but the host Lancers (9-7-1, 5-5-1 MASCAC) evened matters on senior Mitch Purdie's (Peterborough, Ont.) shorthanded tally midway through the second stanza. Nichols provided the heroics with the eventual game-winner late in the frame for UMass Dartmouth, which received insurance markers off the sticks of senior Brendan McDonough (Wilmington, Mass.) and freshman Blake Harlow (Pelham, Ala.) in a 96 second span late in the third period to account for the final margin.
McDonough added an assist on Leonard's goal to finish with a two-point performance for the Corsairs, who also received helpers from sophomores Eric Bolden (Oswego, Ill.) and Dillon Radin (Long Beach, N.Y.) as well as freshmen Melker Kroon (Malmo, Sweden) and Jimmy Pelton (Syracuse, N.Y.). Sophomore Parker Butler (Summit, N.J.), the reigning MASCAC Goalie of the Week, stopped 29 of 30 shots faced to pick up his fifth win of the season between the pipes for the visitors, who have taken two of the first three regular season meetings from the hosts.
Sophomore Matthew Manning (Novi, Mich.) and freshman Matt Roe (Hamlin, N.Y.) assisted on Purdie's goal in the setback for Worcester State, which received 34 saves in goal from junior Josh Reinstein (Woodland Hills, Calif.). UMass Dartmouth outshot the Lancers by a 38-30 margin and held a 33-32 edge in faceoff wins on the evening.
Both teams travel to Fitchburg State for their next respective Massachusetts State Collegiate Athletic Conference outings, as UMass Dartmouth battles the Falcons on Wednesday evening at 7:30 pm after Worcester State visits the Wallace Civic Center in Fitchburg, Mass. on Saturday afternoon at 5:00 pm.