Union on Five-Game Winless Streak, Lose 2-1 at Vermont

Posted at: 12/29/2012 10:42 PM
Updated at: 12/29/2012 10:43 PM

BURLINGTON, VT – Senior defenseman Greg Coburn scored a power play goal, but No. 12/13 Union men’s ice hockey (8-4-4) fell, 2-1, to Vermont (5-8-4) in front of 3,935 fans at Gutterson Fieldhouse in Union’s opening game of the Catamount Cup.

Trailing 2-0 just over halfway through the third period, Union capitalized on its fourth and final power play of the game with Vermont’s Brett Bruneteau in the penalty box for slashing at 11:51. Coburn corralled a blocked shot by senior defenseman Mat Bodie and scored from the slot at 12:31.

Union continued to apply pressure late in the third period, as junior forward Kevin Sullivan nearly jammed a puck past Vermont goaltender Brody Hoffman (24 saves) with 5:00 remaining in the game. With junior goaltender Troy Grosenick (22 saves) out of the net for an extra attacker in the final minute of regulation, Sullivan had another chance, but fired wide from the slot.

"Honestly, I thought we got outworked tonight," said Union head coach Rick Bennett. "We could make a lot of excuses but none of them would be good. We just got outworked tonight. When you're committed, and they were committed tonight, it can create a lot of frustration for a team that's a little off."

Union finished the night 1-for-4 on the man advantage, while holding Vermont off the scoresheet on four power play opportunities.

Vermont scored twice at even strength in the second period to take a two goal lead heading into the third period. UVM’s Robert Polesello finished a two-on-one pass from Brett Bruneteau into an open net at 10:35 to give Vermont a 1-0 lead.

Late in the period, Vermont’s Yvan Pattyn found Kyle Reynolds alone at the Union blueline for a breakaway. Reynolds deked to his right and beat Grosenick with a backhander between the pads at 17:46 to put Vermont up 2-0.

Union had its best chances of the frame on two power play opportunities. With Chris McCarthy in the penalty box for tripping at 5:21, sophomore forward Daniel Ciampini nearly beat Vermont goaltender Brody Hoffman on a stuff attempt. Greg Coburn couldn’t get a clean shot off the rebound and Vermont cleared the puck.

Later in the period, with Union trailing 1-0, and Pattyn in the box for tripping, freshman forward Matt Wilkins chipped a shot over the net at 14:30.

Chances for both teams were limited in the opening period of play as both teams mustered six shots on net, but the host Catamounts were unable to capitalize on two power plays to start the game.

Just :14 into the contest, Union’s Matt Wilkins was sent off for boarding, but the Dutchmen kept Vermont to the outside for most of the man advantage.

Vermont went on another power play at 11:33 when Mat Bodie was called for interference. Grosenick made his best save of the frame on the ensuing man advantage, stopping a left point drive from Chris McCarthy, reaching behind to control the rebound.

Union was unable to capitalize on its first power play of the game, when Kyle Mountain was called for interference at 15:54.

Union will look to snap a five game winless streak (0-2-3), its longest since the 2007-08 season, tomorrow afternoon against Merrimack in a contest that begins at 4:00 p.m.