Scranton Beats WCU 7-3
December 3, 2016
WEST CHESTER–Scranton started the last weekend of the semester off right, heading to Ice Line in West Chester, PA to win 7-3 over WCU. Coming off their last 5-3 win over NJIT, Scranton upped their overall league record to 6-3-1.
Scranton wasted no time in the first period to start the game, with two goals within the first five minutes of playing time. Sophomore Mike Vaynshteyn, fresh off the DL, made his return to gameplay tonight with the first goal, assisted by Freshman Marc Gurega. Sophomore Ryan Kelly, a Scranton-area native, worked the puck for a beautiful second goal that went unassisted. Scranton, up 2-0, kept up the hype with Sophomore Dan Blazejewski forcing the puck into the net with an assist by Junior Mike Manfredonia ten minutes into the period. Luke Iovannoni, who played his freshman year for Scranton before transferring to WCU, knocked one in to put West Chester on the scoresheet and the score to 3-1 toward the end of the period.
The first few minutes of the second period were a test for Scranton, as early leads in some previous games led to overconfidence in their game play and later struggles to maintain their lead. Newly appointed Assistant Captain, Junior Ross Kleinschmidt, wanted to ensure that Scranton stayed ahead in the game, and scored a goal five minutes into the period, assisted by Freshman Alex Hristakis and Vaynshteyn. Although the tone of the game was set, WCU would not go down without a fight, scoring their second goal of the game to bring the score to 4-2. Fearful of the possibility of losing their lead, Scranton battled back and Gurega scored with an assist from Vaynshteyn. A slew of penalties ensued, with Scranton disallowing WCU powerplay advances to end the period 5-2.
Perhaps still full from their turkey, Scranton had an early scare in the third when West Chester sniped a goal two minutes into the period. Now up by just two points, Scranton had to work even harder to maintain the lead, as WCU looked for a late comeback. The back-and-forth rush for the puck didn't end until roughly three minutes prior to the end of the game, when Scranton's Captain, Senior Maciej Wesolowski, scored with an assit by Freshman JJ Foster. Scranton wasn't done just yet, and Gurega scored his second goal of the game during the final minute, assisted by Vaynshteyn. The game ended with Scranton beating WCU 7-3.
Junior Jim Behan worked the net beautifully throughout the game, blocking all but 3 of WCU's 42 shots on goal. After what has truly been an amazing comeback year for Behan, it's no wonder Scranton won the game. The skater's aggressive offensive strategy is definitively offset by their two star goalies, and it's this mashup that makes Scranton work. Scranton's weekend is far from over, as Monmouth heads to Revolution Ice Centre for a 2PM puck drop tomorrow.