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Castleton Spartans

Six Different Players Score for Men’s Hockey in First Conference Win

Six Different Players Score for Men’s Hockey in First Conference Win

RUTLAND, Vt. – Six different players scored and Wyatt Pickrell made 44 saves as the Castleton men's hockey team earned its first New England Hockey Conference (NEHC) victory, 6-2, over Suffolk on Friday.

Senior Caleb Fizer, sophomores Nick Gravina and Dom Kuziak, as well as freshmen Jason Bilski, Asa Palker, and Val Sverdlov scored the goals for Castleton (2-6-3, 1-3-1 NEHC).

The tallies for Gravina and Sverdlov marked the first collegiate goal for both players. The duo, along with Fizer, each also recorded one assist to finish with two points and Pickrell registered his first career point on Castleton's final goal in the third period.

Also for Castleton, sophomore Glenn Wiswell assisted on a pair of goals, while senior Dan Fitzgerald, junior Troy Taylor, and freshman Connor Rider pitched in with one helper apiece.

Suffolk outshot Castleton 46-27 despite the four-goal spread. The Rams left empty-handed on the power play, finishing 0-for-6. Suffolk also had two lengthy 5-on-3 opportunities, but Castleton able to relinquish the threats.

Tommy Bishop and Connor Henry scored the goals for Suffolk (2-6-0, 0-5-0 NEHC). Jack Kelly registered the lone Ram assist.

Suffolk took a 1-0 lead just 58 seconds into the contest when Bishop scored on a one-timed shot on the cross-slot feed from Kelly. Castleton answered 36 seconds later when Rider's pass to Palker on an odd-man rush deflected off Palker's skate legally into the net.

Following back-and-forth play, Bilski scored on the power play on a rebound for his third goal of the season. The Spartans then took a 3-1 lead into the first intermission when Gravina notched his first career goal with 2:58 remaining in the opening frame.

Castleton scored two goals in the opening 8:54 of the second period to take a 5-1 advantage. Following the Spartans' fifth goal, Will Ribas replaced Suffolk starting goalie Michael Levine. Levine made 13 saves, while Ribas allowed one goal on nine shots in 31:06 of relief.

Suffolk notched its second goal at 11:05 on a scrum, and did not allow Castleton to register a shot for the remainder of the middle period, as the Rams applied constant pressure.

After Pickrell played a puck into the neutral zone inside three minutes into the final period, Kuziak collected the puck through traffic before scoring on a breakaway to complete the scoring.

Castleton will look for its third win in four tries on Saturday at 4 p.m. against Johnson & Wales (2-5-2, 0-4-1 NEHC) at Spartan Arena.