WESTFIELD, Mass. - Senior Mike Moran (Milford, Mass.) found the back of the net with 3.4 seconds remaining on the clock as the Worcester State University men's ice hockey team stunned Westfield State 4-3 in Massachusetts State Collegiate Athletic Conference action Thursday night at Amelia Park Ice Arena.
With the win, the Lancers move to 12-9-1 overall on the season and 7-7-1 in the MASCAC. Westfield falls to to 13-7-3 overall and 10-5-1 in the MASCAC.
Westfield State got on the board first on the evening, as Aaron Clancy (Quincy, Mass.) scored just 1:17 in to give the Owls a 1-0 lead. Worcester State senior Cody Weaver (West Greenwich, R.I.) had a quick answer just over five minutes later, tying the score at 1-1. Weaver broke in down the right wing and slid a shot along the ice past Westfield's Thierry Messervier (Montreal, Que.) to tie the game up. Senior Mitch Purdie (Peterborough, Ont.) was credited with an assist on the goal.
In the final minute of the first, sophomore Matthew Manning (Novi, Mich.) scored a power play goal to give Worcester State its first lead of the evening. After a point shot from Weaver got knocked down in front of the net, Manning hopped on the rebound a shoveled a backhander into the net for the 2-1 edge.
Midway through the second, the Owls evened the score at 2-2 on a goal from Francois-Xavier Girard (St. Lazare, Que.), but just 1:10 later, Weaver's second of the contest put Worcester State back on top. Off a feed from Purdie, Weaver unleashed a rocket past Messervier from the point to give the Lancers a 3-2 advantage at the 12:39 mark of the second period.
The score would stay 3-2 Lancers until the waning minutes of the contest, when Westfield evened the score once again on a breakaway goal from Paul Frys (Portland, Ore.) with 3:31 remaining in the third.
Minutes after the equalizing goal, the Lancers killed off a late boarding penalty, and immediately after the kill, went on the power play themselves. A Westfield forechecker made a smart play deep in the Lancer zone pinning the puck to the boards, but Weaver was able to poke the puck free to Manning with 10 seconds showing on the clock. Manning whipped a pass up ice to Moran, who beat his defender down the left wing and slid a shot through Messervier's five hole to win the game.
Reigning MASCAC Rookie of the Week Ryan Hoff (Brockton, Mass.) got his second win of the season in goal, making 27 saves to move to 2-0-0. Messervier took the loss despite 29 saves.
Weaver factored into all four Worcester State goals on the evening, recording two goals and two assists in the contest. Moran finished with a goal and two assists, while Purdie recorded two assists. Manning finished with a goal and an assist to also finish with a pair of points.
The Lancers will travel to UMass Dartmouth on Saturday in their next contest, taking on the Corsairs at 7 p.m.