OSWEGO, N.Y. – The second-ranked Oswego State men’s ice hockey team (12-2-2, 6-0-2 SUNYAC) opened the second half of the conference schedule with a convincing 5-1 win over Cortland (4-11-1, 2-5-1) Friday at the Campus Center Arena. Leading 2-1, the Lakers scored three unanswered goals to remain unbeaten in the league.
The Lakers’ fourth line put the home team on the scoreboard early in the first period. Chris Brown (Jr., Centreville, Ont.) and Chris Carr (Fr., Burlington, Ont.) worked the puck behind the net before finding David Titanic (So., Markham, Ont.) in the crease. Titanic controlled a quick pass from Brown long enough to lift his shot under the crossbar in the top left corner and drop behind the goal line at 2:45. It was the only marker of the stanza, as Oswego State took a 1-0 lead into intermission despite 23 shots on goal.
The second period went back-and-forth until Brown, Carr and Titanic struck again by capitalizing on an odd-man rush. Carr found space to get the puck past Red Dragon goalie Jeff Molner for his first collegiate goal at the 12:39 mark with assists going to Brown and Titanic.
However, it did not take long for Cortland to light the lamp. Joey Christiano and Mike Henrici broke free for a 2-on-1 opportunity, as Christiano forced the Laker defender to commit to him before sliding the puck across to Henrici, who tapped the puck into the net at 14:02.
Oswego State regained its two-goal edge before the end of the frame, though, when Jon Whitelaw (Jr., Huntsville, Ont.) fed Luke Moodie (Jr., Oakville, Ont.) the puck in the slot while the Lakers were on a power play. Moodie got a shot off despite being surrounded by three defenders, but the rebound found its way to Paul Rodrigues (Jr., Etobicoke, Ont.) at the near post. Rodrigues buried the empty net shot for his six goal of the season with 45.4 seconds left in the second period to give Oswego State a 3-1 advantage at the break.
Momentum carried over into the third period when Moodie scored the first of two goals in the stanza. RJay Berra (Fr., Prince George, B.C.) forced a Cortland turnover at its blue line, and pushed the puck up the center of the rink. Moodie beat both Red Dragon defenders in a foot race to the puck for a scoring chance. He looked like he was going to rip a forehand shot, but ended up sliding a backhand under Molner at the last second 1:15 into the period.
Five minutes later, Moodie struck again when he received a pass from behind the net on the far post from Whitelaw after Molner was drawn out of position at the near post for the final goal of the game.
Andrew Hare (Jr., Burlington, Ont.) turned in a solid net between the pipes, recording 21 saves. Molner finished with 41 saves, including 22 in the first period, in the losing effort.
The Lakers ended the game 1-for-3 on the power play, while Cortland went 0-for-2.
Oswego State plays a rare matinee tomorrow at Hamilton with a 3 p.m. puck drop.