|Nichols College||University of New England|
BIDDEFORD, Maine — The University of New England Nor’easters outscored Nichols College 9-5 over the middle two quarters on their way to a 13-10 victory in opening-round action of the 2017 Commonwealth Coast Conference Championship Saturday (Apr. 29) at the Big Blue Turf.
The third-seeded Nor’easters (14-4) advance to Wednesday’s semifinal round and will face No. 2 Western New England University. Nichols ends its season with a record of 10-8. With the triumph UNE matched a school record for wins in a season.
CCC Offensive Player of the Year Dan Auger paced UNE’s balanced attack with three goals. Alex Zadworny and Tom Luttrell each added a pair, while six other players contributed a goal apiece.
Tyler Sikich led Nichols with three markers and Jack Campanale chipped in two.
Nichols opened the game in strong fashion, scoring twice in the initial 3:17 on its way to a 4-3 advantage after a quarter. Auger would tally twice in the second to help UNE outscore the visitors 5-2 in the frame on its way to an 8-6 lead at intermission.
After the two teams split a total of six goals in the third, Garett Bozek notched a man-up score with 4:04 on the clock to give UNE a 12-9 cushion heading into the final stanza.
Each team would score once in the final period.
The Nor’easters had the better part of the stat sheet, topping Nichols in shots (56-32), ground balls (54-39), face-offs won (16-9) and man-up goals (3-0). CCC Rookie of the Year Adam Race was one of three UNE players with seven ground balls, joining Auger and Matthew Layton with that total. Layton won 14 of 20 draws. Andrew Curro had four ground ball pickups and three caused turnovers for the Nor’easters.
Winning goalkeeper David Pearson recorded six saves for UNE, while his counterpart, James Keane, racked up a total of 21 for the Bison.