as Navy's men's ice hockey team defeated Salisbury University, 6-1, Saturday night in the first round of the 33rd annual Crabpot Tournament played at McMullen Hockey Arena.
The Midshipmen will meet Towson University for the Crabpot Tournamant championship tomorrow (Sunday, Feb. 14) at 3:30 p.m. at McMullen Arena. Towson's Tigers defeated the University of Maryland on Saturday afternoon, 5-2, to advance to tomorrow's championship game.
Navy jumped out to a 2-0 first period lead on the strength of goals from sophomore Mitch Pulver and classmate Tumolo and never looked back. The Mids (now 10-19-3 overall) added three more goals in the middle stanza -- from Tumolo, Doug Dietrich, and Rob VanWinter -- to take a commanding 5-0 lead before Salisbury finally got on the scoreboard late in the period during a 5-on-3 extra man advantage. VanWinter's goal was the first of his USNA career.
Senior co-captain Patrick Heitman recorded a power play goal in the third period on a blistering slap shot from the blue line to complete the scoring.
Starting netminder Eric Anderson was credited with 12 saves in his 40 minutes of work for the Mids. Classmate Jeremey Estevez blanked the Sea Gulls in the third period while making four saves. Salisbury goaltender Michael Dougherty finished with 50 saves, as the Midshipmen badly outshot the Gulls by a 56-17 margin. Tumolo was named Player of the Game.
Navy and Towson last met for the Crabpot Tournament championship two years ago, with the Tigers emerging victorious, 4-1. Towson was then coached by Jon Mahaffee, who is now in his first year as the Mids' assistant coach.
"It will be a great game, there's no doubt about that," coach Mahaffee said following Saturday night's win over Salisbury. "It will come down to two things: preparation and who wants it more."
NAVY WOMEN BLANK INDIANA UNIVERSITY OF PENNSYLVANIA, 3-0
INDIANA, PA (Saturday, February 13, 2010) -- The Navy women's ice hockey team, meanwhile, used a strong defensive effort to blank Indiana University of Pennsylvania (IUP), 3-0, Saturday night at the Indiana Ice Center. It was the Mids' third consecutive victory and enabled the first year squad to qualify for the Delaware Valley Collegiate Hockey Conference (DVCHC) playoffs!
Navy sophomore Kristen Storto scored on a shot from the point after receiving a pinpoint pass from sophomore Ashley Spring to give the Mids a 1-0 lead after the first period.
After a defensive battle in the second period, the Midshipmen put the puck in the net a second time when senior Claire Clancy threaded a perfect pass to freshman Jackie Drew, who decoyed the IUP goaltender and backhanded the puck into the twine.
With three minutes remaining in the third period, Navy received a minor penalty for holding, then picked up another infraction for interference with 1:40 left to go. Down 2-0, IUP pulled its goaltender to play 6-on-3 hockey, but Storto, Drew, and sophomore Ella Starr not only killed off both penalties, but Starr scored the final tally on slapshot from the Navy goal line that hit several IUP players en route to the opposite end of the ice, making the final score 3-0.
Navy junior goaltender Mimi Amore had a light night between the pipes, finishing with just five saves.
Navy's final regular season game will be held tomorrow (Sunday) at 11 a.m., again against IUP at the Indiana (Pa.) Ice Center rink.
The Mids compete in Division II of the DVCHC along with IUP, Slippery Rock University, Drexel, Rutgers, and Villanova. Further details about Navy's participation in the DVCHC playoffs will be forthcoming, following completion of the regular season.