Courtesy Vermont Sports Information
BURLINGTON – Jeff Taylor’s power play goal with 2:18 left in the third period broke a 1-1 tie and gave Union a 2-1 win over Vermont to close the first half of the season on Sunday afternoon at Gutterson Fieldhouse.
UVM dropped to 10-6-2 (5-3-1 HEA), while Union improved to 14-3-2 (8-1-1 ECAC) and won its sixth straight game as it swept the weekend series from the Catamounts.
Vermont started the opening period by recording the game’s first five shots on goal. The Catamounts stymied Union on both of its power play chances and Mike Santaguida finished the period with four saves.
Brady Shaw and Ross Colton combined for two early chances to begin the second, but the Catamounts were unable to grab the lead. UVM finally broke through just 13 seconds into a power play chance at 11:46. Junior Rob Darrar collected the puck from Rob Hamilton and fired a shot from the high slot. Brian Bowen tipped the puck low, beating Alex Sakellaropoulos five-hole for the game’s first goal.
Vermont held Union to just four shots for the second consecutive period, but the Dutchmen tied the score just 50 seconds into the final period. J.C. Brassard collected the puck off the right wall at the point and unleashed a shot into the upper corner past Santaguida (18 saves) through traffic.
Darrar nearly restored the lead for Vermont with 12:20 remaining in regulation as he snagged the puck out of midair and took a wrist shot but rung the right post.
Union took its first lead of the game with under 2:30 remaining in regulation after a post-whistle penalty on UVM outside the crease. Cole Meier pushed the puck to Spencer Foo in the left circle, and Foo dished it inside to Taylor in the high slot. Taylor unloaded a heavy one-timer that snuck inside the left post blocker side.
The Catamounts pulled Santaguida with under 90 seconds to play and Jake Massie nearly tied the game from the bottom of the right circle but was denied at the near post. Sakellaropoulos then made a key blocker save on a right point drive from Colton that was labeled for the upper left corner.
UVM finished with a 33-20 edge in shots on goal, including a 19-8 advantage in the first 40 minutes.
Vermont breaks for the holidays and returns to Gutterson on Friday, Dec. 30 at 7:05 p.m. and Saturday, Dec. 31 at 4 p.m. to host Bentley as it continues an eight-game homestand.