BY STEVEN SOUSA // Nov. 11, 2017 //
Despite dominating the time of possession in the game, Curry hockey finished in a 2-2 tie with the University of Western New England, Friday night.
The game between the two conference rivals got a little extra physical, resulting in a crossing of a line of sorts from the Golden Bears. Junior forward Zachary White had to be helped off the ice after receiving a blow to the head from freshman defenseman Adamo Giacomin, who garnered a five-minute major and an ejection.
White didn’t return for the rest of the game, putting the already short-handed Colonels down to 10 active forwards for the game. Head coach TJ Manastersky felt his team did a good job of grinding through the injuries, however.
Later on in that middle period, Curry capitalized on the 5-on-4 power play when defenseman Brandon Zajicek scored off of a rebound to give the Colonels a 1-0 lead.
A mere five minutes later, forward and co-captain Shane Tracy intercepted a puck at mid-ice and deked out a defender before dropping the puck off in front of the net to forward Lionel Mauron, who buried the chance to extend the lead to two.
However, WNE responded with a pair of goals of their own in the same period, both of which came off slap shots from the left circle.
The two teams remained deadlocked throughout the third and overtime periods. Curry outshot the Golden Bears 41-25 but couldn’t finish around the net.
“We could have attacked the net a little better tonight,” Manastersky noted. “We had the puck an awful lot…There’s times where you have to find ways to spin off a guy and get to the net, be willing to shoot and be willing to get in front of the net without the puck.”
In addition to being down to only 10 forwards, the Colonels were also missing co-captain and defenseman, Phil Kiss, who is out with a concussion.
“It affects our lines because he is a top-end defenseman, plays a lot of penalty kill and some power play, so it’s a trickle-down effect,” Manastersky explained. “You start relying on freshmen defensemen to do a lot of things which is baptism by fire but it’s good for them.”
The tie puts Curry at 2-2-1 overall on the season, but they have a chance to break through the .500 ceiling when the second half of the home-and-home series sends the Colonels to Springfield to faceoff with WNE yet again tomorrow evening.
Instead of spreading out games between two conference opponents throughout the season, the new format has CCC teams play both of their games back-to-back.
“I think it’s awesome,” said Manastersky. “It’s like a mini-series and sometimes familiarity breeds contempt.”
Curry has no time to waste and gears up for a road trip to western mass with the puck drop set for 6 p.m. at the Olympia Ice Center in West Springfield, Mass.