This past week the NCAA sent out a video to emphasize the rules and regulations of college hockey.
The Fredonia State Blue Devils felt the impact of the emphasis as they took two, five-minute game misconduct penalties within minutes of each other.
Fortunately for the Blue Devils, they were able to kill the penalties off and upend the Cortland Red Dragons 6-2 in the return of SUNYAC play at Steele Hall on Friday.
OBSERVER?Photo by John?Conti
Fredonia State’s Jordan Oye, left, tries to slip the puck past the Cortland goalie during Friday’s SUNYAC?men’s hockey game at Steele Hall.
"We played 17 games one way and now they are telling us we have to play it a different way," Fredonia State coach Jeff Meredith said. "We haven't taken a five-minute penalty all year and now we take two within a couple minutes of each other."
The Red Dragons' Michael Lysyj scored the opening goal just 3:42 into the game to put the visitors up 1-0.
"I'd like to score first more," Meredith said. "It seems like we always start out from behind."
Four minutes later, Fredonia State's Andrew Christ scored the equalizer, with assists from Billy Sanborn and Dave Ridos.
One minute later, the Blue Devils got the go-ahead goal off the stick of Mat Hehr.
With 2:08 left in the first period, Christ received a game misconduct for contact to the head.
"Most teams can kill off a five-minute penalty without having a game-changing moment," Meredith said. "We really had to battle to kill off two that close together."
The second period saw a flurry of goals, most of which came from the Blue Devils.
Seconds after Fredonia State killed off Christ's penalty, Jordan Oye found the back of the net with Bryan Ross picking up the assist on the play.
"It was just really gutsy," Meredith said of the way his team played on the penalty kill. "We lose Christ and kill off a five-minute penalty. Then Cortland really starts coming at us and then we lose Hehr and have to kill off another penalty."
Oye's goal gave Fredonia State a 3-1 lead with less than three minutes gone in the second period.
Within the next minute of game play, the Blue Devils saw two major momentum swings.
The first came when Hehr picked up the game misconduct and the Blue Devils were back on the penalty kill.
The second came just seconds later when Oye found himself with nothing but open ice between himself and the Cortland goal.
Oye scored the short-handed goal 3:52 into the second period to put Fredonia State up, 4-1.
"That is some good stuff," Meredith said about his team's special teams play. "Three power-play goals and a short-handed goal. That's great."
With seven minutes gone off the clock in the second period, Cortland's Chris Kaleta scored on a power play to make it a 4-2 game in favor of the Blue Devils.
Fredonia State answered back late in the second period with a power-play goal of their own as Brad Nunn cleaned up Ben Waldman's shot in front of the net to give the Blue Devils the 5-2 lead.
"For us to be successful we have to have a good showing," Meredith said. "We have to just keep battling."
Ross added one more goal late in the third for his third point of the game.
On slate for today, the Blue Devils will play host to the No. 1 team in the country in Oswego, who came into Friday with an 8-0 record in SUNYAC play.
"We've got Oswego coming in and they are a tough team," Meredith said. "It is going to be another great SUNYAC battle."
Puck drop is set for 7 p.m. at Steele Hall.
Devils fall short at Plattsburgh
PLATTSBURGH - The Fredonia State men's basketball team dropped a tough road game, 64-58, at Plattsburgh on Friday evening. Neither team was separated by more than six points the entire game.
"It was a little frustrating," Fredonia State coach Kevin Moore said. "We are continuing to improve which is good with a young team we have. It's just a matter of putting it all together.When you a play a team like Plattsburgh, there is no margin for error."
The Devils last lead of the game came at 11:38 following a Branden McKenney layup to make it 47-45. The Devils would pull within two points, 57-55, following another McKenney layup with 2:30 left to play.
Plattsburgh led at the half, 32-31. There were six ties and seven lead changes during the first period.
The Cardinals held a distinct advantage from the free throw line, making 15 of 26 attempts (58 percent), while the Devils were three of nine (33 percent). They out-rebounded the Devils, 34-28.
"We play them the last game of the regular season," Moore noted. "I feel we have a chance to beat that team then."
The Devils had four players score in double figures. Jonathan Herrera led with 15, and McKenney added 13. Adam Smith had 12, while Damien Goodwin II had 11. Sean Donahue had a team-best seven rebounds, while Joseph Monahan had nine assists.
Plattsburgh (5-2 SUNYAC, 9-5 overall) was led by Carl Munnerlyn's 13 points and five rebounds. Chris Ruiz had 15 points to top the Cardinals.
The Devils (2-5 SUNYAC, 5-8) travel to Potsdam today.
"It's critical to get a win (today)," Moore said. "The guys are disappointed. The great thing is you have a chance to get right back on the court and get it right. They are anxious for that."
Last two minutes doom?Devils in defeat
PLATTSBURGH - The Devils fell just short in a see-saw game, dropping a 64-61 SUNYAC contest at Plattsburgh on Friday.
Mid-way through the second half, the Devils took the lead for the first time since the early minutes of the game. With 10:31 left to play, Liz Wierbinksi nailed a jumper to give the Devils a 44-43 lead.
Plattsburgh nailed a three pointer and a jumper to regain the lead, 48-44. The Devils then went on a 10-0 run to make it 54-48 with 6:11 left.
"It's all about progressing," Fredonia State coach Donna Wise said. "We keep doing that every game. Twelve of the 16 players are underclassmen. It is a learning experience. It's all about getting better and I think we have been doing that."
Plattsburgh would regain the lead at 3:23 as Kathleen Payne cut to the hoop to give the Cardinals a 57-56 lead. Following a pair of free throws by Plattsburgh's Dana Nucaro, Caroline Hourihan nailed a long three to tie the game at 59-all with 1:39 left.
Ashley Gyscek then hit a layup to give Plattsburgh a lead they would not surrender.
Plattsburgh led 30-25 at the break. They twice held a lead of 10 points, their biggest of the half, late in the frame.
"Tonight, I thought we were going to be able to pull one off," Wise admitted. "Unfortunately, we didn't. I was really happy with the effort from a lot of players coming off the bench."
Hourihan finished with 14 points, including four three pointers, to top the Devils. Wierbinski added 12 points. Jaime Warren had six rebounds. The Devils accounted for 14 steals in the game.
Plattsburgh (6-7 overall, 3-4 SUNYAC) was paced by Payne with 21 points, and Nucaro added 12. Plattsburgh held a 43-37 edge in rebounds.
The Devils (2-11, 0-7 SUNYAC) travel to Potsdam on Saturday.