MIDDLEBURY, Vt. – Senior Joel Vastl's (North Salem, N.H.) goal with 10:32 remaining proved to be the game-winning goal as the Wentworth hockey team held on to defeat No. 12/10 Middlebury, 3-2, in the third place game of the 20th Annual Middlebury College Holiday Classic. The win was the first for the Leopards over a ranked opponent since defeating the 15th-ranked Curry, 4-3, on March 4, 2009, in the ECAC Northeast semifinals.
With the win Wentworth snaps a two-game losing streak, improving to 6-5-1 on the season. The Panthers fall to 4-4-2 on the season.
The Leopards threatened early, with Middlebury netminder Liam Moorfield-Yee coming up big on sophomore Mike Domsodi (Kirkland, Que.) four minutes in. The Panthers took a 1-0 lead at the 11:26 mark when Max Greenwald poked home a loose puck for the first of his career. Wentworth tied the game just 1:03 later when sophomore Kevin Crowe (Galloway, N.J.) made a pass from behind the net to junior Andrew Yarber (Livonia, Mich.) for a quick redirect. The goal was the second of the year for Yarber.
The second period featured few shots through the first 15 minutes, with a five-minute flurry to end the session. Wentworth regained its lead at the 16:45 mark when freshman Adam Frank (Clarkston, Mich.) scored his second of the year on a rebound after a shot from the left point by Lawton McCracken (Colborne, Ont.) had been saved.
Wentworth increased its lead to 3-1 9:28 into the third period when a nice feed from Fred Gervasi (Mississauga, Ont.) was redirected in front by Vastl. Middlebury answered a few minutes later when Robbie Donahoe skated in on the left side and scored on the power play with a quick wrist shot from the dot. The tally was the second of the season for Donahoe.
Middlebury continued to turn up the pressure in the third period, with Robbie Dobrowski nearly tying the game with 1:54 left as a loose puck sat just off the goal line. The Panthers pulled their netminder with less than a minute remaining, but were unable to tie the game. Middlebury held a 17-6 shot advantage in the third period.
Moorfield-Yee made 16 saves in 51:13 of action for Middlebury with three goals allowed, while Mike Peters played 8:17 of scoreless hockey. Freshman Joel Miller (Calgary, Alta.) made 17 saves between the pipes to earn the win for Wentworth. The Panters outshot the Leopards, 33-19.
Senior Shaun Jameson (Long Beach, Calif.) was named to the all-tournament team.
Wentworth will play in the 48th Annual Codfish Bowl Tournament at UMass Boston on Saturday and Sunday, with the Leopards playing the host Beacons on Saturday and either Johnson & Wales or Fitchburg State on Sunday. Middlebury returns to NESCAC play this weekend, facing Wesleyan and Trinity on the road.
(Portions of this recap courtesy of Middlebury Sports Information)