GENESEO, N.Y. – SUNY Geneseo sophomore forward David Szmyd and sophomore defenseman Mitch Ferguson were each credited with a goal and two assists to lead the Knights to a 7-1 victory over Fredonia and the 2018 State University of New York Athletic Conference (SUNYAC) Men's Ice Hockey Championship, Saturday.
Geneseo (19-5-3) scored four goals in the first 12 minutes of regulation and held the Blue Devils (13-11-4) scoreless over the final two periods to earn its second conference championship in the last three years as well as an automatic bid to its third NCAA Division III Tournament in the last five seasons.
HOW IT HAPPENED
- Geneseo took advantage of an early Fredonia interference penalty after Ferguson scored on a shot from the point with 17:23 on the clock.
- Five minutes later, sophomore forward Andrew Romano collected a rebound off the pads of Blue Devil sophomore goalie Anton Rosen and flipped a backhanded shot inside the right post at 13:28.
- Sophomore defenseman Tanner Salsberry skated into the left face-off circle and scored on a wrist shot through traffic at 10:28 before sophomore forward Joe Serpico scored his first collegiate goal on a low wrist shot from almost the same spot at 8:21.
- Fredonia got one back after sophomore forward Sam Wilbur scored on short rebound inside the right post at 4:46 to make it a 4-1 game at the first intermission.
- Geneseo scored twice in an eight-second span to build a 6-1 second-period lead. Senior defenseman Pat Condon scored on a blast from the top of the zone before sophomore forward Tyson Empey fought through two defenders to snap a wrist shot in the top-left corner of the Blue Devil goal at 7:18.
- Condon connected on another blast from the point to convert a Knights' power play with 3:08 remaining in regulation to close the evening.
- Geneseo won its fifth SUNYAC Championship and second in three years after also defeating host Plattsburgh, 7-1, in the 2016 final. The Knights won back-to-back crowns in 2005 and 2006 after capturing their first title in 1986.
- Junior goalie Devin McDonald was credited with 27 saves to improve to 18-3-3 this season.
- Szmyd was named SUNYAC Tournament MVP after also scoring two goals in the Knights' 5-2 victory over Buffalo State in last Saturday's semifinals. He joined Ferguson, McDonald and junior forward Anthony Marra on the All-Tournament Team, along with sophomore forward Jacob Haynes and senior defenseman Oskar Gerhardson from Fredonia.
The 12-team field for the NCAA Division III Tournament will be announced on Monday at 10:30 a.m. Geneseo will be making their third NCAA appearance in the last five years after also advancing to the 2014 and 2016 national semifinals.