WESTFIELD, Mass. – The Westfield State men's hockey team used five different goal scorers to defeat the defending Massachusetts State Collegiate Athletic Conference champion Plymouth State Panthers 5-2 at Amelia Park Ice Arena on Saturday evening.
Freshman John-Michael DiGregorio (Montreal, Quebec) scored what proved to be the game-winner in the beginning of the second period to lift the Owls over the Panthers.
Both squads exchanged goals to start the contest, each coming on shots from the point. The Panther goal was tipped by freshman Leo Stolpe (Stockholm, Sweden), while the Owls' Josh Boulos (Burlington, Mass.) fired a rocket on the powerplay to place the teams at 1-1.
The period looked like it was going to be a deadlock, until Paul Frys (Portland, Oreg.) snapped a wrister from the slot by the Plymouth goaltender to give the Owls a 2-1 lead with just over a minute remaining in the frame.
The Owls extended their lead early in the second with yet another powerplay goal coming from the point. This time around, DiGregorio got a stick on Francois Xavier Girard's (St. Lazare, Quebec) shot from the point to tip it past Brendahn Brawley (Morton, Penn.) and make it 3-1 Westfield State.
DiGregorio's goal with the man advantage was Westfield State's fourth powerplay goal in the last two games. The Owls are now firing over 30% while up a man.
The Panthers had an answer, however, as JR Barone (West Chester, Penn.) tallied his second goal of the season on a wrister from the right side of the slot to make it a one-goal game entering the third period.
But the Owls would tack on two goals in the final frame; one from senior Robert Neuwirth (Zlin, Czech Republic) who picked the Plymouth defender's pocket and rung one off the post and in, and the other from a deflection off of Danny Ferri's (Chelmsford, Mass.) foot to seal the 5-2 victory for Westfield State.
Thierry Messervier (Montreal, Quebec) earned the win for the Owls and stopped 30 Plymouth shots. Brawley took the loss for the Panthers, making 24 saves in the effort.
Westfield State next hosts Franklin Pierce on Tuesday, puck drop scheduled for 7:35 p.m.
Plymouth travels to Worcester State for a date with the Lancers next Thursday at 4:40 p.m.