Union’s attack sharp in rout of Army (with video)

he start wasn’t that great for Union against Army, but the ending was spectac­ular.

After sp


The start wasn’t that great for Union against Army, but the ending was spectac­ular.

After spotting the Black Knights a goal just over 21⁄2 minutes into the game Saturday, the 11th-ranked Dutchmen took control and gave a dominating performance in an 8-1 triumph in the college hockey season opener for both teams at Tate Rink.

Junior forward Wayne Simpson recorded his first career hat trick, freshman forward Max Novak scored twice and sophomore goalie Troy Grosenick made 17 saves to earn his first collegiate win and help first-year Union coach Rick Bennett get his initial victory.

“It means Win 1. That’s about it,” said Bennett, who took over in late April when Nate Leaman left to become head coach of Providence College. “I’m more happy for Troy Grosenick and the players in that locker room.”

A Mat Bodie turnover led to Zak Zaremba’s goal at 2:32 of the first period. With no one on him, Bodie fanned on a clearing attempt to the left of the net. Zaremba got the puck, and took two whacks at it to put it past Grosenick.

“The true measure of a really good player is how you come back,” Bennett said. “He responded with a good game after that. It happens to everybody.

“Our guys showed, through adversity, what can happen. I’m actu­ally kind of happy that happened. It woke us up.”

The Dutchmen took control of the game after that. They were much faster, they were winning battles to loose pucks, and they were getting shots on goalie Ryan Leets. It was only a matter of time before the Dutchmen would break through.

Matt Hatch got it started with 6:53 left in the first when he batted the rebound of a Simpson shot past Leets. Just over 21⁄2 minutes later, on great passing from Shaun Stuart and Kyle Bodie, Kevin Sullivan gave Union the lead. Novak closed out the first-period scoring with 1:43 to go when he took a Cole Ikkala pass, got past the Army defense and beat Leets.

“I’m glad everything was clicking out there,” Novak said. “We practice like we play. Everyone was working hard out there. We were ready to go coming off that bus today, and real anxious to get out there and get it going.”

Simpson scored his first goal midway through the second period after being set up by Kelly Zajac, who forced a turnover at the Army right circle.

Novak got his second of the game with 4:13 left.

“I didn’t expect it here,” Novak said. “I just wanted to come out and just play hard, and leave no regrets out there.”

Union, which had the nation’s best power play last season, made the most of its only chance of the game when Greg Coburn scored with 1:22 left in the second.

Simpson’s second goal was impressive. Taking a pass from Hatch, Simpson had an Army defender draped all over him. No worries, though. He skated to the net and put a backhander past Leets, chasing him from the game with 9:38 left in the third.

“It was a great power move,” Bennett said. “That’s what we’re looking for our forwards to do, is to drive the net.”

Simpson completed his hat trick when he beat goalie Rob Tadazak with 3:48 left. It’s the second straight year that a Union player scored a hat trick in the season opener. Josh Jooris did in last year’s 9-0 win over Sacred Heart.

“It kind of happened so fast,” said Simpson, who scored 16 goals last season. “It happened to be on my stick in a good spot three times. Luckily, I was able to put them home.”

Union 3 3 2 — 8

Army 1 0 0 — 1

First Period — 1, Army, Zaremba 1, 2:32. 2, Union, Hatch 1 (Simpson), 12:07. 3, Union, Sullivan 1 (K. Bodie, Stuart), 14:38. 4, Union, Novak 1 (C. Ikkala, Coatta), 18:17. Penalties — None.

Second Period — 5, Union, Simpson 1 (Zajac), 11:28. 6, Union, Novak 2 (Coatta, C. Ikkala), 15:47. 7, Union, Coburn 1 (K. Bodie, Gostisbehere), 18:38 (pp). Penalties — Yanovitch, Uni (interference), 5:13; Maggard, Army (hooking), 18:23.

Third Period — 8, Union, Simpson 2 (Hatch), 10:22. 9, Union, Simpson 3 (Hatch, Zajac), 16:12. Penalties — None.

Shots on Goal — Union 16-14-14 — 44. Army 4-8-6 — 18.

Power-play opportunities — Union 1 of 1; Army 0 of 1.

Goalies — Union, Grosenick 1-0-0 (18 shots-17 saves). Army, Leets 0-1-0 (39-32), Tadazak (10:22 third, 5-4).

A — 1,439. T — 2:05.

Referees — Mike Taddeo, Jay Durfee. Linesmen — Matt Lanahan, Ryan Knapp.

Categories: College Sports

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