Men's Hockey Battles Host Norwich in PrimeLink Great Northern Shootout Debut

Junior Matt McNair had two assists in Adrian's 3-2 loss at Norwich Friday. (Action photo by Mike Dickie)
Junior Matt McNair had two assists in Adrian's 3-2 loss at Norwich Friday. (Action photo by Mike Dickie)

NORTHFIELD, Vt.--Senior Bryan Yim scored a pair of goals for Adrian, but Felix Brassard scored the go-ahead goal on the power play with 2 minutes and 34 seconds left in the third period to lift host Norwich to a 3-2 come-from-behind non-conference men's hockey victory in the opening round of the PrimeLink Great Northern Shootout on Friday.

= Final Score: Norwich University 3, Adrian College 2

= Location: Kreitzberg Arena; Northfield, Vt.

= Records: Norwich Cadets 3-2-1 overall; Adrian Bulldogs 7-2 overall

= National Rankings: Adrian--#2 United States College Hockey Online (279 points, 3 first-place votes) and #2 (284, 5) polls; Norwich--"receiving votes" in (5) and D3hockey (5).

= Yim found the back of the net on his two shots and went 6-for-9 on face-offs.

= Senior Connor Armour dominated the face-off circle by winning 19 of 27 draws.

= Junior Matt McNair contributed two assists.

= Classmate Dino Balsamo added an assist and was 9-for-18 in the dot.

= Brett Ouderkirk had three points on two goals and an assist.

= Tom Aubrun (W, 3-2-1) had 26 saves on 28 shots faced.

= Brassard also had an assist for a multi-point game.

= Taeron Lewis was 15-for-29 on face-offs and he had an assist. 

= After Adrian was whistled for minor penalty for interference on the goaltender at the 16:20 mark of the third period, Norwich went on the man-advantage for the third time and cashed in 66 seconds later. Brassard took a pass from Lewis and wristed a shot from the high slot past Kevin Entmaa (7-2, 16 saves) for the game-winner.

= With his team trailing 2-1, Yim evened things up with power play goal from the left face-off circle. Balsamo, on the right wing, passed the puck to McNair below the goal line and then he found Yim on the opposite face-off circle with a pass across the front of the goal. Yim sidestepped a defender and sent a shot into the upper right corner for the tying goal at 14:58 in the third.

= Ouderkirk gave Norwich a 2-1 lead at the 15:58 mark of the second period, taking a feed from Gabriel Chicoine to score the power play goal.

= After the teams played to a scoreless first period in which NU had a 7-5 shots on goal advantage and Adrian dominated possession, Yim staked the Bulldogs to a 1-0 lead in the second on a nice passing play. Entmaa passed the puck up to Dunn, who skated up to his offensive blue line. He sent a rinkwide pass over to McNair, who found a streaking Yim down the slot and he tipped in the game's first goal from the top of the crease at the 7:06 mark.

= The Cadets, however, answered just 27 seconds later off the stick of Ouderkirk with assists coming from Carter Cowlthorp and Brassard.

= Adrian pulled Entmaa for the final 1:16 in favor of an extra attacker, but could not get a shot off on goal to try to tie the score and force overtime.

= Norwich was 2-for-3 on power plays while Adrian went 1-for-7.

= The prestigious PrimeLink Great Northern Shootout has seen participating teams go on to capture the NCAA Division III Men's Ice Hockey Championship nine times in the same season.

= This was a rematch of the 2017 NCAA Semifinals in Utica, N.Y., where Norwich edged Adrian in overtime, 5-4, before winning the national title.

= Yim has a team-leading nine goals in nine games. Dunn leads the Bulldogs with 13 points (10 assists) to 12 for Yim.

= Adrian is the highest-ranked invitational team to visit the ShootOut, which is hosted every third year by Middlebury, Norwich and Plattsburgh on a rotating basis.

= Adrian will play USCHO 15th-ranked Plattsburgh State in the Shootout third-place game at 4 p.m. Saturday.

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