OSWEGO — After scoring three unanswered goals to tie the game in the third period, the No. 15 Oswego State men’s hockey team fell 4-3 to No. 7 Utica College, after the Pioneers scored with 1:52 remaining in the game.
Oswego State’s Jeff Solow turned the puck over in the defensive zone, allowing Utica’s Conor Landrigan to go one-on-one with Laker goaltender Cedric Hansen and eventually scoring the game winner near the goal crease.
That was the second goal allowed after a defensive turnover. The first goal of the game, scored by Kasper Kjellkvist, came after Carson Vance turned the puck over in the first period, finding the net past David Richer.
“Our puck management in our own end isn’t what we expect,” head coach Ed Gosek said. “Two out of their four goals were just self-inflicted. I don’t want to say we’ve been beating ourselves, but the mistakes we made ended up in the back of our net.”
Oswego State quickly found themselves in the hole 3-0 after goals from Kjellkvist, along with Landrigan’s first goal at 0:55 of the second period after a quick wrist shot in the slot, and then Eric Holland on a two-on-one at 6:36 of the second.
The Lakers (7-6, 6-1 SUNY Athletic Conference) outshot the Pioneers 10-6 in the first period, but couldn’t capitalize on the power play or find a way past Utica goaltender Gianluca Baggetta, who finished the game 21 saves on 24 shots.
“The way that we played in the first, we had some good chances,” Gosek said. “As the period went on, during the second 10 minutes, I thought we did some good things.”
After the Holland goal, Richer was pulled with Hansen coming in relief. Hansen finished the game with 12 saves on 13 shots. Richer made eight saves on 11 shots.
Gosek mentioned that Richer couldn’t be faulted for the third goal after a “heck of a snipe.”
“It was just a change to try to get the guys going,” he said. “Cedric made some good saves in the second after some of our mistakes. We’ll make a decision for tomorrow and not sit here feeling sorry for ourselves.”
Ryan Bunka put Oswego State on the board at 16:18 of the second period after lagging behind a three-on-two opportunity. He was able to rip one from the slot past Baggetta and cut the deficit to 3-1.
The goal was both the sophomore’s first collegiate goal and point after playing in six games last season and just four this season.
“He’s been able to get into the lineup. I’m happy for him,” Gosek said. “He’s paid his dues. He sticks with it. Hopefully things will continue to improve for him.”
Anthony Passero found the back of the net after a pass near the goal crease from Alex DiCarlo, and brought the Lakers within one at 3-2 at 5:06 of the second period. Josh Zizek originally tied the game at 8:56 of the middle period after a rebound from Jody Sullivan.
Following the loss, Oswego State’s tough schedule continues against Elmira College today. The Soaring Eagles have been receiving national votes for Division III, earning six last week.
Elmira College (7-3-1, 5-2-0 UCHC) has won its last five games. Most recently, the Soaring Eagles won 4-1 against Plattsburgh State last Saturday.
“It’s a tough turnaround. But, the guys will have to find another gear,” Gosek said. “Even though the outcome didn’t go the way that we wanted, the guys believe in themselves and believe in what we’re doing.”