‘Whiteout’ knockout

Sliasis skates away

"Junior forward Ian Boots may have cemented his legacy with the Oswego State men’s ice hockey team despite having been with the team for less than a semester.

"Boots’ late third-period goal helped the Lakers defeat archrival SUNY Plattsburgh, 5-3, on Saturday night at a sold out Campus Center Ice Arena. With the victory over Plattsburgh, the Lakers improve to 4-0-0 over the past two seasons against their rival after going 0-9-1 in their previous 10 meetings.

"With 1:39 remaining in regulation, Boots broke a 3-3 tie that sent the "Whiteout" crowd into an uproar. Boots skated around the Plattsburgh crease looking for an opening behind Cardinal goalie Josh Leis and got him to bite on a stick deke, allowing Boots to wrist a shot past the outstretched glove of Leis.

""We knew going into the game that it was going to be a battle," Boots said. "Just as much as it was a big game for us, it was probably the biggest game of the season for them. It seems like any team that comes into Oswego [State], it seems like a Stanley Cup game to them."

"The game was a constant back-and-forth match between two talented Division III hockey programs. Although the Cardinals never led at any point of the game, they did manage to tie the game on two separate occasions. Oswego State appeared to have seized momentum in the third period when sophomore forward Tyler Leimbrock rocketed a slap shot from the right faceoff circle past the stick side of Leis at 7:59 of the third period to give the Lakers a one-goal lead.

"Just over a minute later, Plattsburgh tied the game on Dylan Clarke’s power-play goal. Following a hooking penalty enforced to senior defenseman and captain Kevin Huinink, Clarke converted on a rebound attempt in front of the net. Plattsburgh’s Eric Satim wristed a shot from the slot that was blocked aside by Laker goalie Paul Beckwith, but Clarke was in position to knock home the rebound attempt with 10:54 remaining in regulation.

""That’s going to happen," head coach Ed Gosek said. "They’re a good team and we have to stay disciplined, we have to stay out of the box. We deserved the penalties. There’s no sense in dwelling on it. We have to stay focused."

""I couldn’t say that we had been in that situation yet this season," Boots said. "It was good to see how the team responded. It was definitely a big momentum changer."

"The Lakers (6-0-0 overall, 4-0-0 SUNYAC) jumped out to a two-goal lead to begin the game and had many opportunities to blow the game wide open prior to the first intermission.

"After a scoreless first half of the period, sophomore forward Luke Moodie kept the momentum from Friday night’s hat trick against SUNY Potsdam with his fourth goal in two games.

"Moodie corralled a loose puck off the stick of sophomore forward Matt Singleton and beat Leis on his glove side with a slap shot just outside the left faceoff circle for the game’s first goal.

"Both Moodie and Leimbrock had been two players benched earlier in the season for poor play on the ice.

""I had a slow start and coach felt that he needed to shake up things a bit," Moodie said. "I was O.K. with that and when I’m in the lineup I’m going to do what I can to help the team and keep a positive attitude."

""We needed them to play better," Gosek said. "It wasn’t a punishment. We needed them to pick it up and get back to where they were last year and let’s hope this gets them going in the right direction."

"Three minutes later, Oswego State converted on its first power play opportunity of the game. Plattsburgh’s Matty MacLeod was called for tripping, leading to senior forward Andrew Mather’s power-play goal at 14:03 of the first period. Senior defenseman and assistant captain Stephen Mallaro fired a slap shot from the blue line that went just wide of the nearside post. The puck ricocheted off the end boards and kicked out in front of the net, where Mather tapped the puck into the net for the two-goal lead.

""We came out with a lot of energy and execution and obviously got the early lead, which is good to do," Gosek said. "[Plattsburgh] is a really good team and they answered right back on a couple of our mistakes on the penalty kill. It was a well played game for this time of year."

"The Cardinals (2-2-0 overall, 2-2-0 SUNYAC) took advantage of Oswego State’s miscues, capitalizing on two power play opportunities and with an extra attacker on a delayed penalty. Plattsburgh finished 2-for-6 on the power play while the Lakers went 1-for-4.

"Plattsburgh fought back and silenced the crowd with two quick goals to tie the game prior to the first intermission. On a delayed penalty to senior forward Dan Bremner, the Cardinals found themselves with an extra attacker, as Leis went to the Plattsburgh bench. After two quick passes in the Lakers’ defensive zone, Plattsburgh’s Nick Jensen scored on a one-timer past Beckwith’s glove side. From the left faceoff circle, Plattsburgh’s Cody Adams passed the puck off to Patrick Jobb on the right faceoff circle, who snapped a pass to Jensen in front of the net for the easy goal.

"Bremner’s penalty affected the Lakers more than once. A new NCAA rule states that if a team scores on a delayed penalty, the penalty will still be enforced. The Cardinals’ Kyle Kudroch put that rule to good use for Plattsburgh, tying the game with 2:48 remaining in the first period. Kudroch wristed a shot from inside the right faceoff circle that snuck just inside the near side post, past Beckwith’s glove side.

"The second period featured a rare scoreless frame. Neither team was able to put the puck past the respective goalies. Beckwith made seven saves in the period, while Leis stopped all 13 shots by the Lakers.

"The Lakers heavily outshot the Cardinals, 41-25, but both goalies played well enough to keep the game close. Beckwith came into the game allowing just 1.20 goals per game, but gave up a season-high three goals on Saturday. Beckwith finished with 22 saves. Leis, who has been splitting time with fellow goalie Ryan Williams, had given up 4.52 goals per game in two contests, and made 36 saves.

"The victory over the Cardinals, coupled with a 7-1 win over Potsdam on Friday night, has the Lakers alone atop the SUNYAC standings at 4-0-0. The Lakers will finish up their five-game home stand on Friday, Nov. 12, when they host SUNY Cortland at the Campus Center Ice Arena.