No. 12/13 Union Men’s hockey rides second-period surge past No. 10/11 Vermont

BURLINGTON, Vt.—The No. 12/13 Union College men’s hockey team exploded for three goals in the final 6:35 of the second period en route to 7-3 win against No. 10/11 Vermont, Saturday night at the Gutterson Fieldhouse. The Dutchmen, who extend their winning streak to five, go to 13-3-2, while the Catamounts move to 10-5-2.

Spencer Foo extended his point streak to 16 games with two goals and an assist (11g-19a). Mike Vecchione pushed his point streak to five games with a goal and an assist (4g-7a), Cole Maier scored his second goal in as many games and added an assist and Brett Supinski added a pair of helpers. Ryan Burton, Michael Pontarelli and Luc Brown rounded out the scoring. In goal, Alex Sakellaropoulos made 31 saves to improve to 11-1-1.

Union jumped in front lead at 1:03 of the first when Pontarelli scored on a rebound for his second of the season. Vermont goaltender Steffan Lakkas kicked away Nick DeSimone‘s one-timer from the point with the right pad, but Pontarelli pounced on the loose puck, flipping in backhand from a tight angle.

Brown doubled the lead 3:34 later, stripping a Vermont defenseman behind the Catamounts’ net before jamming home his second career tally.

Vermont responded late in the period, battling back with two goals in the final 3:32 of the frame.  Shaw put the Catamounts on the board with a wrist shot from the slot at 16:38 and Privitera scored on a 2-on-1 at 18:51, tying the game at 2-2.

The Dutchmen fought off early pressure by Vermont in the second period before erupting for three goals to take a 5-2 lead into the third.

Burton put Union in front 3-2 at 13:25, burying a rebound after Lekkas stopped Matt Krug‘s wraparound attempt, and Vecchione made it 4-2 13 seconds later. Foo collected the puck in the neutral zone before threading a pass to a streaking Vecchione, who snapped a shot past Lekkas high on the glove side.

Maier extended the lead it 5-2 with 59 seconds remaining in the period, burying his own rebound for his fourth point in the last two games (2g-2a).

Foo put the game out of reach at 10:36 of the third, finishing off a perfectly worked 2-on-1 with Supinski.

Shaw cut Vermont’s deficit to 6-3 with a power-play goal at 14:15, but Foo sealed the win with his fifth goal in the last two games, scoring an empty-net goal at 17:52.

Lekkas made 21 saves over 40:00, while Mike Santaguida stopped seven shots in relief. Union outshot Vermont 35-34 and went 0-for-3 on the power play, while the Catamounts finished 1-for-4.

The Dutchmen take on Vermont again tomorrow evening at 4 p.m. to close their six-game road swing.

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