Although the score did not matter and it was supposed to be a somewhat casual pickup game amongst old friends, the Oswego State Men’s club hockey alumni game turned into a high-scoring and highly competitive contest with some physical fireworks late in the game.
During warm ups, both sides were seen joking around, playfully slapping each other with sticks and shoving each other.
The beginning of the first period had an all-star game atmosphere: all offense, no defense, and laughter. The first of many goals came at the 17 minute mark, by Chase Collins. The junior forward stole a pass in the alumni zone and put the puck in the back of the net. The alumni made sure that the lead would be short-lived, scoring in the ninth minute and then coming out swinging in the second period with two more goals.
With the momentum on the side of the alumni, the club hockey team answered the bell swiftly by scoring four goals and taking a 5-3 lead to end the second period. The alumni seemed fatigued going into the locker room and had the look of a team that needed some sort of shot in the arm. The third period was not looking promising for the alumni, as the club team scored their fifth straight goal 26 seconds into the period making the score 6-3. Once again, the momentum switched hands in favor of the club team when, with 16 minutes remaining in the game, the alumni team needed a huge comeback to keep the club team from walking away with bragging rights for the year. This would set up as one of the better endings to a highly competitive hockey game even if it was just for fun.
The alumni started their rally with a goal with 16 minutes remaining and then scored once again just a minute later to make it a 6-5 game. Both teams knew what was happening: The alumni were not going away quietly and were going to keep crashing the net until the game was tied. Sure enough, with nine minutes left, the alumni scored to tie the game up at six, giving the crowd one heck of a finish to the game.
However, with tensions high and the game up for grabs on both sides, there were fireworks. Just 30 seconds after the game-tying goal, there was a skirmish at the club team net. After a scoring chance for the alumni, one of the players for the alumni started to jaw at freshman goalie Matt McCellan. The two began to shove each other and then broke into a full-fledged fight; in the end, the alumni player was ejected from the game. After the fight, the main focus was on how the game was going to end; with momentum on their side, the alumni scored with two minutes left in the game. With the game starting to escape, the club team went into survivor mode and crashed the net heavily until they found a crack in the armor. With just one minute left, the club team finally put one through and tied the game at seven. With both teams looking exhausted, the game was going to be decided in the most suspenseful way: a shootout.
Both teams missed in the first round, but the club team found the edge they needed in the second round, as the alumni were stopped on their shot and the club team scored on theirs. Round three was quiet with two magnificent saves on both ends of the ice and in the fourth round it was loud again with goals for both sides. In round five, the alumni needed a goal. As both benches watched, the alumni skater came in slowly, deked left, shot right, but was blocked. The club Team was victorious and could relish their win for the year. At the end of the game, both teams were back to joking around, making fun of the way they played and had no hard feelings at all.
Coach Jay Peacock expressed gratitude to the alumni team for paving the way for the younger team.
"The guys in green made it possible for the pants on your rear ends, the gloves on your hands and the helmets on your heads," Peacock told his players. "Make sure you thank them before you guys leave."