Mason Graddock scored a power play goal on a rebound with 2:51 remaining to lift Middlebury to a 3-2 victory over in-state rival Norwich in the title game of the 11th annual PrimeLink Great Northern Shootout. The title is the fourth for the Panthers, as they move to 4-0 on the season. Norwich falls to 2-1-1 on the year, as the Panthers held a 27-19 shots advantage on the night. Middlebury netminder Doug Raeder took home tournament M.V.P. honors for the Panthers.
Middlebury opened the scoring just 1:19 into the game, as John Sullivan picked up a failed clearing pass and skated in on Ryan Klingensmith, beating him for his third goal of the weekend. The Panthers held an 11-1 shots advantage until Norwich went on a power play at the 13:53 mark. Raeder kept it a one-goal game with a pair of nice saves on the power play, including a pad save on Tyler Stitt. The Cadets went on another power play just 10 seconds after the first had expired and had a third later in the period, but could not score. The period ended with the Panthers holding a 12-4 shots advantage.
Middlebury took a 2-0 lead 3:05 into the second period as Jamie McKenna found the back of the net from the doorstep. Norwich got on the board 1:20 later as Nick DelGallo's shot trickled through the pads of Raeder. The Cadets threatened again six minutes in, as Jim Koehler's shot hit the right post.
Norwich had a golden opportunity to tie the game at the 13:57 mark, as they went on a five minute power play. The Middlebury defense held its ground and allowed just two shots on goal during the power play, taking a 2-1 lead into the third period.
Norwich tied the game at 9:14 as Nikita Kashirsky scored on the power play after a shot from Steve Coon was saved. Middlebury threatened on a power play of its own at 10:36, but could not take the lead until Graddock's game-winner at the 17:09 mark.
Raeder ended the night with 17 saves in goal, while Ryan Klingensmith made 24 saves for the Cadets.
#16 Rob Johnson (St. Thomas), #27 Ward Smith (Plattsburgh), #31 Ryan Klingensmith (Norwich), #14 Jamie McKenna (Middlebury), #6 Jack Kinder (Middlebury), MVP-#31 Doug Raeder (Middlebury), Top Rookie-#6 Shawn Baker (Norwich) .
Date: November 29, 2008 - 7:15 p.m.
Venue: Kenyon Arena - Site: Middlebury, Vt.
TEAM 1 2 3 OT F
Norwich (2-1-1) 0 1 1 - 2
Middlebury (4-0) 1 1 1 - 3
M-1st (1:19) - John Sullivan
M-2nd (3:05) - PP: Jamie McKenna (Chaz Svoboda, Martin Drolet)
N-2nd (4:25) - Nick DelGallo (Chad Anderson, Billy Kasper)
N-3rd (9:14) - PP: Nikita Kashirsky (Steve Coon, DJ Fimiani)
M-3rd (17:09) - PP: Mason Graddock (Tucker Donahoe, Mack Cummins)
Ryan Klingensmith-N (59:36 min., 24 saves, 3 GA)
Doug Raeder-M (60 min., 17 saves, 2 GA)