NEW BEDFORD, Mass. – Freshman Brandon Platt (Pittsburgh, Pa.) recorded a hat trick to lead the Salem State Vikings to a 5-2 win over the University of Massachusetts State Dartmouth men's ice hockey team in a Massachusetts State Collegiate Athletic Conference (MASCAC) on Thursday evening at the Hetland Arena.
The freshman forward recorded two scores in the opening period and clinched the game with his third mark of the evening late in the second.
The Vikings gain their sixth win in the conference (6-3-1) while improving their overall record to 9-6-1. The Corsairs drop to 3-7 in the MASCAC and 3-11-2 on the year. UMass Dartmouth has dropped two straight contests since earning a 2-1 road victory over conference foe Framingham State on Jan. 16.
With 12:50 on the clock, Platt opened up the scoring when he ripped a seed from the left side of the ice over the left shoulder of the Corsair goalkeeper. Sophomore Keatin Cashin (Boxford, Mass.) earned the helper on the scoring play.
Down one score Shaun Walters (Plymouth, Mich.) answered back for UMass Dartmouth with his tenth goal of the campaign. Walters was setup by Mike Restuccia (Malden, Mass.) and John Sartell (Wakefield, Mass.).
Platt regained the lead for the visitors not even three minutes later when he put home a blocked shot. Teammate Chris Mastropietro (Revere, Mass.) charged the net and had a rip, but JJ Solloway (Derry, N.H.) recorded one of his 41 saves. The rebound caromed into Platt's path who flicked the puck in the net for the score.
Just before the end of the first period Jonathan Houk (Richboro, Pa.) found Walters streaking up the middle of the Vikings zone. The junior delivered a smooth pass to teammate Joshua Ybarra (Chesterfield, Mich.) for a one-timer from the left side of the goal to deadlock the game at two goals apiece.
To open the second stanza, Salem State junior Cameron Banwell (Toronto, Ontario) took advantage of a power play opportunity and snuck the puck past Solloway for the eventual game-winner. The score came just two minutes and three seconds into the period. On the play Mastropietro tallied his second assist of the night.
Platt recorded his third and final goal of the contest with 6:36 on the clock in the second period. He was setup by teammates Banwell and Kristofer Faric (Whitby, Ontario).
In hopes of chipping into the two goal deficit the Corsairs pulled Solloway with one minute and seven seconds remaining in regulation to give them a man advantage, but Viking Eric Defelice (Chalfont, Pa.) had other plans and smacked the puck from about halfway across the ice for the empty net goal.
Salem State converted on two of their five power play opportunities, while the Corsairs were unsuccessful on four attempts.
UMass Dartmouth returns to MASCAC action on Saturday when they host Westfield State at 4:40 pm, while Salem State travels to Saint Anselm for a 7:00 p.m. non-conference matchup.