Each season the Bullet hockey team looks to make one or two long road trips to mesh as a team and to play some unlikely opponents. This year Gburg has two long road trips. The second is an ACC tournament in NC against Duke, UNC, and NC State. The first was this past weekend as Gettysburg would travel to Worcester, MA to take on Holy Cross' club hockey team. Gettysburg knew very little about this team and had no common opponents with each other in the past. But having their own DI program and rink on campus they could only assume this team would've been quite a bit better than last weekend's opponent.
After the long 7 hour bus trip the team got ready for the game and as the game got underway you could never tell the team had sat on a bus all day. The Bullets came out flying, playing in front of a number of New England alums and plenty of family and friends, Gburg took it to them early. Setting a high speed tempo that left Holy Cross a little stunned. However, Gettysburg would be guilty of the first penalty of the game and last week's game showed the that penalty killing has hurt the Bullets. But the Bullets were focused on this night as they killed off the early disadvantage and shortly after we're awarded with a powerplay of their own. On the powerplay senior captain Niall Hines cycled it down low to junior Hunter Yale who quickly saw and fed a pass to freshman defenseman Brad Bourne who was cutting in to the slot and one timed it in to the back of net for the 1-0 lead. Perhaps Gburg's excitement got the best of them and they got too comfortable and minutes later one of the Holy Cross forwards beat the Gburg defense and put one past sophomore goaltender Sam Shockley. The back and forth battle would continue but the first would end knotted at one goal.
The second period it seemed that Gettysburg did not bring the same intensity as they did in the first. They sat back more and played more conservatively hoping that Holy Cross would be the one to make the next mistake. This strategy led to fewer chances in the second and a little more of the game played between the blue lines and in front of Shockley. But he was up to the task stopping everything that was thrown at him in the second. Late in the period Gettysburg had a great opportunity when senior assistant captain Ryan Anderson took a shot the hit the goaltender and bounced over him only to be swatted away by a defenders glove just before going in to the net. The second would end with the same score as the first.
Gettysburg found their game once again in the third as they opened the period strong. Minutes in to the period the teams found themselves four on four which meant a little more room on the ice to skate. Yale took full advantage of this with his speed as he poked the puck past the defense and despite being hooked from behind got a shot off past the goaltender for the 2-1 lead. As the time began to wind down ever so slowly Gettysburg clung to their one goal lead. With about five minutes remaining Holy Cross was in the Bullets end and from the side boards, almost along the goal line they threw a shot on goal which deflected somehow over the shoulder of Shockley and over the line to tie the game. Gettysburg knew they had worked too hard to let down now and off the ensuing face off Gettysburg got it deep in to the Holy Cross zone. The puck was thrown out in front and out of the scramble Anderson came up with the puck and this time did not miss as he buried it for the one goal lead once again. Unfortunately no lead is safe especially in this game as once again on the next shift Holy Cross got the puck deep in the Gburg zone and was able to slip one past Shockley tying the game with Four minutes remaining. Time winding down it almost looked as the game would be heading in to over time but a bad bounce in the final minute allowed Holy Cross to have the puck in front of the Gburg net that found its way just under Shockley's arm and in the net with only 33 seconds on the clock. Despite a last ditch effort Gburg would not be able to score and suffered a devastating loss 4-3.
Despite the loss Gettysburg looked good and hopefully they can continue this play in to their conference games. But first Gburg would have one more game in the weekend against the University of Scranton.
We would like to thank all of the alums and family who came out to the game and to the Shockley family and Yale family who provided food on the bus trip.