|Colby College||University of New England|
BIDDEFORD, Maine — Four unanswered goals in the 2nd period vaulted the University of New England in front of No.14 Colby College on the way to a 5-3 men’s ice hockey win on Tuesday night (Jan. 2) at the Harold Alfond Forum.
The Nor’easters (8-3-2) now have six victories and a tie in their last seven outings. After coming up empty in the first five games of the all-time series with its in-state foe, UNE has captured the last two meetings against nationally-ranked Colby squads. The Mules (6-3) see their five-game win streak come to an end.
Following a scoreless opening 20 minutes, Michael Rudolf (Risch, Switzerland) gave the visitors a 1-0 lead just 90 seconds into the middle frame. The Nor’easters responded with four tallies in a span of 11 minutes, behind goals from Max Rasberg (Columbus, Ohio), Ryan Burr (Toms River, N.J.), Tucker Ross (Ashburn, Va.), and Ryan Bloom (Northville, Mich.).
The feed for Bloom’s marker came from junior Brady Fleurent (Biddeford, Maine), who registered his 100th career point on the play. Fleurent is the second player in program history to reach the milestone, following his brother Trevor, who did it on February 2, 2017.
Mario Benicky (Liptovsky Mikulas, Slovakia) kept Colby in it with a goal at the 19:06 mark of the 2nd, and then another 6:50 into the 3rd to make it 4-3. The Mules continued to press for the equalizer down the stretch, but Fleurent guided an empty-net home from beyond center ice with 0:09 left to seal it.
UNE killed off its only three penalties after gaining the 4-1 advantage, and Tate Sproxton (Surrey, British Columbia) racked up 28 saves to backstop the decision. Burr notched a game-high three points for the Nor’easters, who cashed in on both of their power-play opportunities in the contest.
Andrew Tucci (Toronto, Ontario) made 22 stops for Colby, which received a pair of assists from John Rourke (Wellesley, Mass.) on the offensive end.
There will be no let-up in UNE’s early-2018 schedule, as Big Blue heads for Vermont on Friday (4 p.m.) to face No.6 SUNY Geneseo at the Northfield Savings Bank Tournament. The weekend host, No.11 Norwich University, will entertain Northland College (Wisc.) on the other side of the draw.