Mitch's Sports Report: UVM Nets Comeback Win Over St. Lawrence; Badgers' Wynn Forces OT Win
The University of Vermont mens' hockey team trailed the St. Lawrence Saints by a goal entering the third period at the Gutt last night, but they'd already tied the game once after being down a goal, and did so again in the third, keeping the momentum going with a power play goal that gave them a 4-3 win in their last non-conference game of the season.
Craig Puffer tied the game at three early in the third and then Brian Bowen cashed in with the man advantage midway through the frame to put UVM ahead for good. And the offense was able to play comeback hockey thanks to stalwart defensive work, with the Saints managing just four shots against goalie Stefanos Lekkas in the final period. He finished with 19 saves for the win and the Catamounts have improved their overall record to 13-6-2 as they enter inter-league play. Their next game is Saturday at home against Northeastern.
The UVM women were also on the ice last night, riding a five-game unbeaten streak that ended with a 2-1 overtime loss against Merrimack in North Andover when Madison Morey put the game winner home for the Warriors less than a minute into the overtime. UVM had tied the game at one in the second period when Eve-Audrey Picard put home her seventh goal of the season on a redirect of a wrist shot by Mackenzie MacNeil. The Catamounts still have a winning record in America East conference play and take an 8-7-5 mark into their next game against Maine. Elsewhere in womens' play Trinity and Norwich had their game postponed due to rough weather that made travel a no-go.
In mens' college hoops the Johnson State Badgers won a thriller over Colby-Sawyer in overtime, getting a game-tying basket from Marqwon Wynn, who found the net on a three-pointer with just under two seconds left in regulation to force extra time. In overtime Kawaun Chavis hit a lay-up that would give Johnson the lead for good in an 85-80 victory. Colby-Sawyer's Dana Bean led all scorers with 24 points while Wynn had a team high 19 for the Badgers, who are now 4-6 on the season.
Elsewhere in the mens' game New England College edged Lyndon State 76- 73.
In womens' college hoops Smith topped Middlebury 64-48, Colby-Sawyer got by Johnson 74-56, and New England College beat Lyndon 80-64.
To the pros, and Isaiah Thomas has heard the chants of "MVP" at home in Boston, and heard them again last night as he continues to set new career highs. One game after scoring a personal best 52 points against Miami, the all-star guard set a career mark for assists, handing out 15 helpers to go with his 29 points in the Celtics 115-104 win over the Utah Jazz. The 15 assists were no small feat against a Jazz team that specializes in defense, holding opponents to an NBA low of 94 points per game, but the Celtics came out firing and never let up, with Al Horford and Jae Crowder each contributing 21 points. The Celts may finally be finding a rhythm to their game after a stop and start kind of year so far. They've now won four of their last five amid a longer stretch of winning eight out of ten.
In the NHL last night the Montreal Canadiens visited music city to skate against the Nashville Predators, a game that would have been much more compelling had P.K. Subban not been injured and unable to play against his former teammates for the first time since the big trade that sent him to Nashville for fellow all star defenseman Shea Weber. But as it turned out, the two teams played a thriller, with Weber reminding the Nashville crowd how good he was by scoring a goal for his new team in Montreal's 2-1 overtime win. Max Pacioretty got the game winner for the Habs in the OT period.
Elsewhere, the Buffalo Sabres upset the NY Rangers at Madison Square Garden, winning for just the second time in their last eight games in a 4-1 win. Evander Kane and Justin Bailey scored less than two minutes apart in the first period to power the Sabres offense, and Buffalo has now beaten the Rangers in their last three meetings.
One other hockey note. The Columbus Blue Jackets beat the Edmonton Oilers last night, making it 16 wins in a row for Columbus. If the Jackets win their next game they will tie the record for the longest NHL winning streak of all time set by the Pittsburgh Penguins in the 1992-93 season.