Union Captures National Title in Philly

Published on April 13th, 2014

by Mike del Tufo

Saturday April 12, 2014

The NCAA title game came down to a battle between Union and Minnesota.  Union prevailed in a high-scoring affair 7-4.

Flyers draft pick Shayne Gostisbehere led the way for Union as he scored a goal, two assists, and was a +7.  On his play, Union head coach Rick Bennett said, “A plus-7 is pretty staggering. Maybe some of the plays he wasn’t really a part of, but just his presence out there does create something, because you’ve got to be aware. That’s the sign of a great player.”

Union captain Mat Bodie on Gostisbehere said, “He’s a big-time player, and this is the biggest game of our lives and he really stepped up. He’s the motor tonight that really got us going. That first goal was a great individual effort and it really got us going. So he’s been tremendous all year for us.”

For this game, Colin Stevens started in net for the Union and Adam Wilcox for the Minnesota.

19 seconds into the game and Union went on the power-play as Minnesota was called for roughing.  They were unable to convert and Minnesota responded by scoring at 2:37.  Justin Kloos had the goal.  Union went on the power-play again soon after and peppered Wilcox with shots.  They applied tremendous pressure but were unable to score.  Minnesota finally got a power-play of their own when Gostisbehere was called for holding.  It was a strong kill for Union who followed that up with the tying goal at 9:26 when Gostisbehere sliced through the Minnesota defense and snapped it in.  Minnesota came right back at 10:03 when Sam Warning fired a tough angle shot that found its way in.  A wild scramble in front of Minnesota’s net at 15:09 resulted in Union tying it 2-2.  Mike Vecchione scored the goal. Union would score twice more before the end of the period to take a 4-2 lead.  Eli Lichtenwald scored for Union at 16:06 and Daniel Ciampini, who had a hat-trick in the semifinal, at 17:03.  It was a wild 1st period of play!

Minnesota Taylor Cammarata lifted the puck over Stevens at 1:13 of the 2nd period to pull them to within 4-3.  Play finally settled down after this.  Both goalies made some big saves as the period progressed.

Union was not content to sit on their lead.  They continued to push the puck up the ice.  Max Novak tipped it in at 5:31 of the 3rd period to restore Union’s 2-goal lead.  Minnesota took some bad penalties that helped Union control play.  Minnesota got one back at 16:20 when Hudson Fasching scored on the power-play.  A great defensive play by Gostisbehere then led Union the other way and Kevin Sullivan scored at 18:38 to make it 6-4.  Union closed out the scoring with an empty-net goal.

Gostisbehere on the title win said, “I noticed the Union faithful out there for sure. I saw the fans in the stands, and they looked pretty happy. My mom was crying, of course. It was really awesome. It feels like we’re dreaming right now, but sometimes dreams come true.”

This was Union’s 1st ever ice hockey championship.

Union wins title

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