The Free Press, Mankato, MN

Sports

March 21, 2009

Gustavus tops Wis.-Stout in OT

Gusties to play for national title today

LAKE PLACID, N.Y. — When starting goaltender Matthew Lopes was taken out of Friday’s NCAA Division III semifinal game with an injury, the Gustavus Adolphus men’s hockey team knew it had a more-than-capable backup.

Actually, Josh Swartout isn’t really a backup.

The sophomore started 15 games this season and was more than ready to step in, as he led the Gusties to a 3-2 overtime victory over second-ranked Wisconsin-Stout to advance to its first national-championship game.

“I was extremely nervous when coach told me I was going in,” Swartout said.

But coach Brett Petersen wasn’t, even with a precarious 2-1 lead at the time.

“Josh is an all-conference goaltender,” Petersen said. “He steps in in a tough, tough position and handles it admirably and then some.”

After giving up a third-period goal, Swartout held down the fort, making 14 saves in the third period and overtime until Patrick Dynan netted the game-winning goal at 6:31 of the extra period. Dynan’s score was redemption from a wide shot he had missed on a shift earlier.

“All I was thinking was, ‘Get this one on net,’” said Dynan, who scored two goals in the game.

The game wasn’t all action, all the time, however.

The only statistics either team could muster in the first period were penalties. The 15th-ranked Gusties and Blue Devils combined for nine penalties and no goals in the frame. Both teams had good scoring chances, but couldn’t finish.

“I thought as the game went on the intensity improved,” Stout coach Terry Watkins said.

The Dynan brothers line — Patrick, Casey and Rory — put the Gusties on the board first at 5:32 of the second period when Patrick Dynan sneaked the puck inside the right post off a pass Rory Dynan. Casey Dynan also assisted.

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