Fishman Scores in OT as Men's Hockey Battles Back to Defeat Wesleyan

Derek Pimentel scored twice and assists on the GWG in OT.
Derek Pimentel scored twice and assists on the GWG in OT.

Trailing 2-0 entering the third period, visiting Middlebury picked up a pair of goals from Derek Pimentel over the final 20 minutes to force overtime. Ronald Fishman then scored the game-winner with just 24 seconds left in the extra frame to give his team a 3-2 win at Wesleyan. The Panthers improved to 4-6-2 overall and 3-3-2 in conference play. Wesleyan dropped its sixth-straight contest, falling to 2-10 overall and 1-5 in the NESCAC.

The Cardinals got the only markers of the first and second periods as Cam McCusker spotted the hosts a 1-0 lead at 14:23 of the first period, scoring his second career goal on a give-and-go with Alex Carlacci. When Eric Casey netted his second of the year at 10:09 of the middle stanza, the Cardinals enjoyed a two-goal cushion. His smartly placed wrist shot from the left circle beat Stephen Klein (20 saves) on the glove side. In the meantime, Wesleyan netminder Dawson Sprigings collected 18 of his 34 saves over the first 40 minutes.

The Panthers broke into the scoring column at 4:31 of the second period when Pimentel scored on a wrist shot from in front after receiving a pass from Fishman, as he came away with a two-point day. Middlebury's tying goal came at 16:31 off a scramble in front of Sprigings, after he stopped a shot by Max Greenwald. Pimentel knocked the loose puck out of the air and into the net for his second goal of the game and third of the season. Much of the third period was played in the Wesleyan end as Middlebury generated a 15-5 edge in shots and had a 37-22 advantage for the game. 

Most of overtime was played in the Wesleyan end as well and the Middlebury pressure paid off for the visitors when Fishman slapped a shot from the right side that hit the inside of Sprigings' pad but continued through his legs into the net at 4:36. Pimentel made it a three-point game with the assist.

Ahead for Middlebury is a game at Plattsburgh State on Friday in non-conference action. Wesleyan will travel to Colby the same day for a NESCAC matchup with the Mules.