Union-Princeton postgame report (with 3 videos)
Things weren’t looking good for Union. Once again, the Dutchmen found themselves in the position of being down two goals after two periods. On Friday against Quinnipiac, the Dutchmen never mounted a comeback after falling behind, 2-0, and they would lose, 4-0.
Against Princeton on Saturday, the Dutchmen surrendered three second-period goals to turn a 2-1 lead into a 4-2 deficit. No one would have been surprised to see the Dutchmen wave the white flag and surrender.
But there was something different about Saturday’s third period. Instead of going through the motions like they did Friday, the Dutchmen kept pounding away at the Tigers. They were creating chances.
There was no quit in them.
“It was like we knew we were going to come back,” Dutchmen defenseman Shayne Gostisbehere said. “We were up. We were ready to go. We knew what he had to do.”
The Dutchmen knew they had to keep up the pressure on Princeton and goalie Mike Condon. They were determined to find a way to crack the Tigers’ defense.
Full credit to the Dutchmen, and Gostisbehere and Daniel Call in particular, for getting the job done. Gostisbehere scored, and then set up Carr for a breakaway goal with under 1:20 to play as the Dutchmen rallied for a 4-4 ECAC Hockey tie against the Tigers at Messa Rink.
Gostisbehere started the rally by showing great patience. Stationed at the right point, Gostisbehere watched the Tigers scrambling in front of him during a four-on-four situation. As the Tigers backed off Gostisbehere, the sophomore defenseman and Philadelphia Flyers prospect fired a wrist shot that beat Condon between the pads.
“I was just looking for a shot to shoot,” Gostisbehere said. “I just shot it through his legs. Thankfully, it went in.”
As the clock wound down late in the third period, Gostisbehere took a pass from Greg Coburn behind the Union net. As Dutchmen goalie Troy Grosenick began the trek to the Union bench so that the Dutchmen could get an extra attacker on, Gostisbehere spotted Carr sneaking behind the Princeton defense at the Tigers’ blue line. Gostisbehere’s stretch pass hit Carr perfectly, sending him in alone on Condon.
Carr waited until Condon opened his pads, and he put a backhander between them with 1:14 to go to tie the score.
“There’s no better feeling than that, knowing your going in one-on-one with the goalie,” Carr said. “You try to open him up five hole, and see how it works out.”
Gostisbehere’s patience on his goal and his accurate passing to set up Carr’s tally just showed why he could be playing for the Flyers in the future, and why he could be in Team USA for the World Junior Championships later this month.
“Big-time players make big-time plays,” Bennett said. “That’s the best way I can put it.”
As far as getting the tie, Bennett will take it. He hopes it serves as a learning experience for the Dutchmen.
“It definitely beats a loss,” Bennett said. “I thought for how hard we battled, it was good to pull out a point here. Now, am I going to chanting around town that we got a point? No. At the same token, 42-26 [shots on goal in Union’s favor], sometimes it happens for you, and sometimes it doesn’t. Tonight, [we] had a little bit more puck luck.”
Almost a game-winner
Carr almost won it for the Dutchmen with 23.8 seconds left. He was five feet out in the slot when he fired a wrist shot over Condon’s glove. But the puck clanked off the crossbar. The celebration horn went off, and play was stopped so there could be a video review. The review confirmed the puck hit the crossbar and never entered the net.
“The puck was rolling a little bit,” Carr said. “I hit it as hard as I could. I didn’t quite get the bounce off the crossbar.”
Dutchmen right winger Wayne Simpson had two assists. The senior is six point shy of 100 for his career.
With his goal and assist, Carr has 86 points, putting him 14 away from 100.
I have three postgame videos.
To see Bennett's press conference, click here.
To view Gostisbehere’s postgame remarks, click here.
To watch Carr’s press conference, click here.
My three stars of the game:
1) Shayne Gostisbehere, Union defenseman — Had a goal and two assists, and keyed third-period rally.
2) Daniel Carr, Union forward — Scored game-tying goal; also had an assist.
3) Tom Kroshus, Princeton defenseman — Had a goal and an assist.
That’s all from Messa Rink. Check out my College Hockey Slap Schotts blog on Monday.
Good Night! Good Hockey!