No. 6/6 Salve Regina Knocks of No. 4/4 Stevens Point for NCAA Men’s Ice Hockey Championship Berth

No. 6/6 Salve Regina Knocks of No. 4/4 Stevens Point for NCAA Men’s Ice Hockey Championship Berth

INTERACTIVE BRACKET

LAKE PLACID, N.Y. – Commonwealth Coast Conference (CCC) Goaltender of the Year Blake Wojtala (Trenton, Mich.) made 55 saves to backstop No. 6/6 Salve Regina to a 3-0 win over No. 4/4 Wisconsin-Stevens Point the NCAA Division III Men's Ice Hockey Semifinals on Friday afternoon at Herb Brooks Arena in Lake Placid, N.Y. The Seahawks will faceoff against No. 1/1 St. Norbert tomorrow at 7 for the NCAA Division III Men's Ice Hockey National Championship. The Green Knights defeated Colby, 4-3, in the other semifinal.

With the win the Seahawks record goes to 22-5-2 and they become the first CCC team in any sport to earn a spot in national title game. It is also the school's first national championship appearance in any sport.

The Pointers dominated the first 18 minutes of play forcing Wojtala to make 23 of 55 saves, which was the most save in the an NCAA Division III Men's Ice Hockey Tournament game that did not go to overtime, in the first period. However, it was Salve Regina that was able to get the first point on the board as Erik Udahl (East Walpole, Mass.) took advantage of a turnover by the Stevens Point in its own zone and beat Max Milosek (Lapeer, Mich.) on just Salve's second shot on goals of the game.

Energized by their late goal, the Seahawks went into the second strong. They earned their first power play opportunity seven minutes into the period as B.J. Duffin (Red Deer, Alberta) was sent to the box for tripping. Just 35 seconds into the man-advantage, Udhal notched his second goal of the contest with helpers from Patrick Thompson (Hellertown, Pa.) and Nick Cyr (Mount Laurel, N.H.). Stevens Point once again held the shot advantage, 11-9, but Wojtala was up to the test on each opportunity.

Wojtala made 20 more saves in the final stanza and Danny Philbrick (Rye, N.H.) potted an empty netter with an assist from John McLean (North Andover, Mass.) to seal the deal for the CCC Regular-Season Champions.

The shutout was Wojtala's ninth of his career, extending his program record and making him 20-5-2 on the year. Milosek made 17 saves in the contest and took the loss to drop to 17-6-3.

Aside from the save total by Wojtala, the Seahawks skaters also did their job keeping the puck out of the net as they blocked 19 shots. Stevens Point went 0-for-3 on its man-advantage opportunities, while Salve went 1-for-3.

 

2018 NCAA DIVISION III MEN'S ICE HOCKEY TOURNAMENT SCHEDULE 

NCAA First Round – Saturday, March 10

No. 11/13 Nichols def. Fitchburg State, 3-1 | BOX
Colby def. No. 8/7 University of New England, 4-2 | BOX

NCAA Quarterfinals – Saturday, March 17

No. 6/6 Salve Regina def. No.11/13 Nichols, 4-3 | BOX

NCAA Semifinals – Friday, March 23
Herb Brooks Ice Arena (Lake Placid, N.Y.)

No. 6/6 Salve Regina def. No. 4/4 Wisconsin-Stevens Point, 3-0 | BOX
No.1/1 St. Norbert def. Colby, 4-3 | BOX

NCAA Championship – Saturday, March 24
Herb Brooks Ice Arena (Lake Placid, N.Y.)

No. 6/6 Salve Regina vs. No. 1/1 St. Norbert, 7 p.m.

 

 

ABOUT THE COMMONWEALTH COAST CONFERENCE

The Commonwealth Coast Conference (CCC), founded in 1984, is an NCAA Division III athletic conference comprised of ten full member and four associate member institutions throughout the New England region. Its membership aims to provide student-athletes with a positive experience in their pursuit of excellence through high academic standards, quality competition, and a meaningful student life. The conference administers championships in 18 intercollegiate sports.

 

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