Western New England Tops Endicott 4-3 in Final Contest of 2018-19 Campaign

Kyle Carducci finished with 52 saves in Western New England's 4-3 win over Endicott on Saturday night. (Photo by Rachael Margossian)
Kyle Carducci finished with 52 saves in Western New England's 4-3 win over Endicott on Saturday night. (Photo by Rachael Margossian)

Golden Bears defeat Gulls for first time in ten meetings

WEST SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (February 16, 2019) – Junior goaltender Kyle Carducci (Rocky Hill, Conn.) finished with 52 saves and sophomore forward Anthony Frati (Churchville, N.Y.) scored the go-ahead short-handed goal early in the third period as the Western New England University ice hockey team wrapped up its 2018-19 campaign with a 4-3 victory over Endicott College on Saturday night in Commonwealth Coast Conference (CCC) action at the Olympia Ice Center.

Top Performers
Frati was among four different goal scorers for the Golden Bears, as seniors Matt O'Dea (Orland Park, Ill.), Steve Beck (Milton, N.Y.) and Tyler Hines (North Haven, Conn.) also found the back of the net.

Senior defenseman Eddie Rogers (St. Louis, Mo.) was also a key contributor for Western New England with three assists in his final collegiate contest.

Carducci was spectacular between the pipes, topping the 50-save mark for the second time in his career.

Endicott graduate forward Ross Olsson (Billerica, Mass.) paced the Gulls with a two-point effort (one goal, one assist), while freshman Hunter Luhmann (Lebanon, N.H.) and junior James Winkler (York, Maine) scored as well.

Game Review
O'Dea staked the Golden Bears to a 1-0 lead just 3:49 into the contest, when he beat Endicott freshman netminder Conor O'Brien (Pinellas Park, Fla.) with a shot into the upper right corner of the net.

The Gulls responded at the 11:44 mark on Winkler's goal, which was aided by assists from senior Joseph Slovak (South Yarmouth, Mass.) and freshman Sky Silverstein (Calverton, N.Y.).

Western New England regained the lead 1:29 into the second period on Hines' sixth goal of the season, but the Gulls equalized courtesy of Luhmann less than a minute later before pulling ahead for the first time when Olsson buried a power play goal with 5:32 left in the middle frame.

The Golden Bears then capitalized with a man advantage at 16:55, as Beck tipped home the game-tying goal with assists from O'Dea and Rogers to make it 3-3.

Western New England was whistled for a penalty early in the third period, but Frati broke free on a breakaway and slipped a shot through O'Brien's five-hole for a short-handed goal as the Golden Bears regained a 4-3 edge.

Carducci sealed the win for the Golden Bears with a strong third period, as he turned away all 14 shots that he faced the rest of the way, including a late flurry of three in the final ten seconds of regulation.

Notes
• Endicott outshot Western New England 55-20 and held a 47-24 advantage in the faceoff circle.
• The Golden Bears went 2-for-4 on the power play, while Endicott was 1-for-6 with a man advantage.
• Western New England's win marks its first over the Gulls in ten meetings.

Up Next
Western New England's season comes to a close at 8-17 (3-14 CCC), while Endicott (15-8-2, 9-8 CCC) will enter the CCC Tournament as the No. 5 seed.