For the second time this season, Wesleyan recovered from a multiple-goal deficit against nationally ranked Bowdoin to force the game into overtime. This time, however, the NESCAC rivals stayed tied through the extra frame as they posted a 3-3 deadlock Sun., Feb. 10. Wesleyan had given Bowdoin its first loss of the year back on Jan. 11, 6-5 in overtime, coming back from a 4-1 deficit. The Polar Bears are ranked third in Division III in the latest USCHO.com poll.
Bowdoin had the lone marker of the opening period, stuffing in a rebound from in close at 8:22 of the frame. The Polar Bears made it 2-0 at 1:28 of the second period with a shot from the slot lifted over a diving Nolan Daley '16 (#30, main photo).
Wesleyan got the next two goals to send the game into the third period tied at 2-2. A power-play goal from top scorer Keith Buehler '14 cut the lead in half as his shot from the right side beat the Bowdoin keeper to his right at 16:00. Just 38 seconds later, Ryan White '13 received a pass from Connor Ryan '15, spun and fired a shot inside the right post for his third goal of the year.
Wesleyan made it three straight markers when John Guay '13 (#18, photo insert upper left), who assisted on Buehler's goal, got one of his own only 33 seconds into the third period. Guay tipped in a point shot by Micah Ehiorobo '13 to give Wesleyan a short-lived 3-2 advantage. Bowdoin responded at 1:51 with the tying goal on a breakaway. The remaining 23 minutes were scoreless as each goalie made some outstanding saves. Daley finished with 37 stops. Wesleyan hit the right goal post with a shot with 11:30 to go in the third period. The Cardinals also hit the crossbar in overtime.
Bowdoin had only two power plays in the contest but one came with less than five minutes to go in regulation and the second came in overtime. Wesleyan was 1-for-4 with the extra skater.
Wesleyan and Bowdoin both have games to make up due to the snowstorm. Bowdoin needs to play a game vs. Trinity while Wesleyan has a contest vs. Colby to reschedule. Wesleyan made up its game with Colby Tues., Feb. 12 at Phillips Exeter Academy. Colby netted three goals in the third period, the final one into an empty net with :31 left, to seal a 4-2 win. Colby avenged an earlier 3-1 home loss to Wesleyan this year.
Colby went ahead for good at 7:05 of the final period putting in a rebound from the edge of the left circle past Daley, who had made two saves on the play. Colby's third goal also came on a rebound with a backhander pushed under Daley at 14:38 after a shot from the right circle he'd been stopped. It was the Mules' second power-play goal of the evening.
Wesleyan got one back with 2:54 remaining when Nick Craven '13 got his second goal of the game and 15th of the season, firing a slapper from above the right circle that hit the Colby goalie but trickled into the net.
The final goal came about 40 seconds after Wesleyan had pulled Daley for a sixth skater. A pass by the Cardinals went through an uncovered right point and was collared by Colby at center ice, leading to an easy open-net goal.
Colby had drawn first blood in the game, scoring on the power play at 8:35 of the opening period. The Mules connected on a wrister from the high slot to Daley's glove side.
Wesleyan evened the count at 19:22 of the first period as Craven fired in a one-time from the slot after taking a centering pass from the right by Buehler. Buehler also assisted on Craven's second goal as he leads Wesleyan and the NESCAC in scoring with 18 goals and 17 assists for 35 points as was named a semifinalist for the Concannon Award, given to the top American-born Division II/III Player in New England. Craven is second with 15 goals and 17 assists for 32 points. The teams skated scoreless in the second period.
Daley finished the game with 28 saves.
Wesleyan, which has already locked up the sixth seed in the upcoming NESCAC tournament, hosts Trinity in its next game Friday, Feb. 15, beginning a home-and-home series to close out the regular season. The game Friday will be webcast starting at 7 p.m.