Courtesy Norwich Sports Information
NORTHFIELD – Sophomore forward Scott Swanson (Wheaton, Ill.) scored 47 seconds into overtime to lift the Norwich University men’s ice hockey team to its first win of the 2018-19 season and new head coach Cam Ellsworth’s career for a 2-1 victory over Skidmore College on Friday night in Kreitzberg Arena.
Senior defenseman Cam Beecy (Stowe, Vt.) threaded the needle with a picture perfect lead pass to Swanson at the blue line to put him in on a breakaway. Swanson took care of the rest making a move and flipping the puck over to his back hand to slide the puck over the outstretched leg pad of Skidmore goalie Brandon Kasel for the game-winning goal.
Norwich (1-0-1, 1-0-0 NEHC) improved to 26-2-2 all-time vs. the Thoroughbreds with the victory.
Junior goalie Tom Aubrun (Chamonix, France) made 20 stops in net to pick up his first victory of the season, while junior forward Todd Jackson (Holly Springs, N.C.) scored late in the first period for Norwich’s first goal.
Jackson lit the lamp at the 18:31 mark of the first period with a pretty backdoor finish off a pass from the side boards by freshman Noah Williams (Cortland, N.Y.). Williams found Jackson sneaking in at the far post and Jackson one-timed the shot into the corner of the net leaving Kasel no chance to get across and make the save.
Skidmore (1-1-0, 0-1-0 NEHC) equalized at the 4:48 mark of the third period with a power play goal of its own as Matt Muzyka took advantage of a fortuitous bounce to beat Aubrun and tie the game up at 1-1. Brandon Borges passed the puck out the corner to Owen Campbell in the slot. Campbell whiffed a bit on the shot only getting a piece of the puck but it deflected to the right post and caught Aubrun off guard allowing Muzyka to swoop in and roof a shot into the left corner of the net before NU could recover.
Kasel made 36 saves for Skidmore in the loss. Norwich went 1-for-6 on the power play.
The Cadets will look to exorcise their Hobart demons tomorrow at 4 p.m. when NU hosts the defending NEHC champions at Kreitzberg Arena in the first meeting since Hobart claimed last year’s tournament title with a 3-0 win. The Statesmen beat Norwich three times last year, becoming the first team in Kreitzberg Arena’s 20-year history to beat the Cadets three times in a season on their home ice.