Three goals in three minutes spark DII Flames past Captains
January 20, 2013 | Lynchburg, Va.
A three-goal scoring spurt in a span of two and a half minutes late in the second period lifted Liberty University's Division II men's hockey team to a 4-2 victory over Christopher Newport University in the last game of the weekend DII Showcase, Sunday afternoon at the LaHaye Ice Center.
The Flames (17-6-1) extended their winning streak to four games with a weekend sweep of Kennesaw State, Delaware, and CNU (14-10-1), which finished 0-3 in the showcase.
John Cotton, who scored a power play goal to start Friday's comeback from a 2-0 second-period deficit in a 4-3 shootout win over KSU, assisted Seth Reed on a 3-on-2 break to cut the Captains' lead to 2-1 just after a second-period power play expired with 4:05 to go.
"Their guy actually came out of the (penalty) box as I passed it up to (Reed)," Cotton said. "He redirected it off the cross and just tipped it in. That first one really got us going. We know once we scored, we'd be OK. We just needed to get on the board."
"It was good for our captain Seth Reed to get a goal," Liberty assistant coach Josh Tucker added. "He hasn't had a goal for a long time so it was good for him to get one."
Just over a minute later, Peter Kazmierczak, who netted the winning goal in the eighth round of Friday's shootout, finished a rebound of a shot from beyond the right circle by Brad Docksteader in the left crease, knotting it up at 2-2.
Then, with less than two minutes left in the second, Aaron Semiao's slap shot from about the same spot as Docksteader's found the five-hole, beating CNU goalie Eric Dumas for a 3-1 advantage.
Cotton capped the scoring and gave the Flames a two-goal cushion with just under seven minutes left in regulation with a nifty move and forehand finish off the skate of Dumas and an assist from DJ Dinnison.
"I sort of walked around from the right corner and shot it right off the goalie's skate and it went right in," Cotton said.
Dumas made 34 saves compared to 25 for Flames goalie Trenton MacDonald as Liberty outshot CNU 38-27 following a slow start.
"Really, they just outworked us at the start of the first period and got a couple quick goals on us," Tucker said. "Late in the second period and in the third, we started playing Liberty hockey and that got us going."
Tucker served as an assistant coach for the Captains last year before returning to Liberty, where he played on the DI team all four seasons.
"It was pretty interesting," Tucker said of facing CNU. "I still know a lot of the guys and I still talk to a couple of them so it was fun to coach against them and to see them do well against us and it was obviously good to see us battle back."
Cotton hopes the Flames can continue their current run of success into February's playoffs.
"We're rolling now," he said. "We've got four wins in a row to start the second semester and we've got six games left in the regular season so we're looking to get on a nice win streak and get going to get better seeding for the playoffs."