The Free Press, Mankato, MN

Sports

March 22, 2009

Gusties fall 4-1 in title game

Martinson scores lone goal for Gustavus

LAKE PLACID, N.Y. — Neumann took advantage of nearly every opportunity against Gustavus Adolphus College in the NCCA Division III Men’s Ice Hockey Championship game Saturday and the result was the program’s first-ever national title.

The Knights netted three goals in the second period on their way to a 4-1 win at the 1980 Olympic Rink.

“I’m just glad we showed we belonged here,” first-year head coach Dominick Dawes said. “We played the best teams all season long, and we beat the best teams.”

After entering the second period deadlocked at 1-1, Jesse Cole and Ryan Heickert teamed up for two goals in a span of 3:47. The first was a tipped Heickert shot for Cole’s first goal of the night, and the second came from a nice feed across the slot by Heickert.

“Ryan basically put it on a tee for me,” Cole said.

Heickert also scored Neumann’s first goal of the night in the opening period, negating David Martinson’s game-opening score for Gustavus Adolphus.

It took Neumann goaltender Ross MacKinnon a period to settle down and get a feel for his positioning. Martinson scored his goal by banking a shot off MacKinnon’s chest from behind the net.

“It didn’t really get by me,” MacKinnon said. “I put it in the net myself.”

But, after the Gusties’ only score, the freshman netminder picked up right where he left off a night ago when he shut out Hobart in the semifinal for only his second shutout of the season. MacKinnon made 24 saves in Saturday’s championship game.

“It took me a while to get into that game,” he said. “I was kind of all over the place.”

Gustavus Adolphus controlled the majority of the first period, outshooting Neuman, 8-3.

The Gusties also outshot Neumann for the game, 25-22. However, Gustavus Adolphus head coach Brett Petersen said Neumann did a good job limiting his team’s scoring opportunities.

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