HARTFORD, Conn. – The University of New England scored twice in the second period and held on late for a 2-1 triumph over Trinity College (Conn.) in the first round of the 2019 NCAA Division III Men's Ice Hockey Championship on Saturday night at Williams Rink.
Now with a program-record for wins, the Nor'easters (21-6-2) will travel to Norwich University next weekend for the national quarterfinals [Interactive Bracket]. It marks the first time in University history that a team is among the final eight remaining in an NCAA tournament.
Following a scoreless first frame, Ryan Bloom put UNE in front 6:55 into the second period with a wrap-around finish, extending his single-season school record to 22 goals. Tyler Seltenreich buried a one-timer at the right post with 15 seconds left to extend the lead to 2-0 through 40 minutes.
Taggart Corriveau got one back for the Bantams (19-4-5) midway through the third, but the Nor'easters defense managed to hold on down the stretch and fight off 85 seconds against Trinity's 6-on-5 to safely advance.
Ben Churchfield was stellar in the UNE net, tying a season-best with 43 saves on the night. Brady Fleurent tallied both primary assists to match Bloom and Seltenreich with two points.
Teddy Loughborough had 28 stops for Trinity.
The Nor'easters and Norwich will meet for the 17th time next Saturday at Kreitzberg Arena. UNE's only two victories in the all-time series with the Cadets have come in the last two, both coming on the road -- a 4-3 overtime win in the final contest as league foes in 2015-16, and a 1-0 result last season to claim Norwich's mid-season tournament.