Cosolito’s Late Goal Lifts Men’s Hockey Past Colby

Frank Cosolito netted Friday's game-winning goal with 1:52 left in the third period.
Frank Cosolito netted Friday's game-winning goal with 1:52 left in the third period.

Frank Cosolito scored his first goal of the season with 1:52 left in Friday's third period, lifting Middlebury to a 3-2 win over NESCAC foe Colby in Alfond Rink. The Panthers (4-11-0, 2-7-0) stay in Maine for a 4:00 p.m. contest on Saturday against Bowdoin, while the Mules (7-8-0, 6-5-0) host Williams at 3:00 p.m.

The hosts jumped on the scoreboard first at the 7:34 mark of the opening period. Justin Grillo skated through the left slot and had his initial shot blocked, but he gathered the puck and wristed an attempt over the right pad of Middlebury goalie Stephen Klein. The Panthers tied the contest at 1-1 when Michael Fahie skated down the right side, lifting a wrister just over the glove of Colby netminder Sean Lawrence for his third tally of the season.

The Mules looked to regain the lead with nine shots on goal in the final five minutes, but Klein stopped each attempt, including a poke check with his paddle on Kienan Scott's shot with under 30 seconds left.

In the second period, Middlebury took the lead just under four minutes into the stanza. On a three-on-two rush, Kamil Tkaczuk put home a rebound into the upper-right corner after an initial shot by Fahie was saved from the left side. The Panthers nearly pulled ahead by two at 11:24 when David Belluche collected a loose puck in the offensive zone but whistled a shot just wide.

Colby leveled the contest at 2-2 at the 8:01 mark of the third period on the power play. Spencer Hewson ripped a shot from the right point through a screen for his first collegiate goal. The Mules kept up the offensive pressure, inducing a penalty shot at the 10:27 mark, but Klein thwarted Scott's go-ahead bid in the butterfly.

With a little more than six minutes remaining, a breakaway by Scott was denied by the right leg of a sprawling Klein to keep the game knotted. Cosolito ripped a low shot from the right dot that went through the legs of Lawrence at 1:52 for his second career goal. The Mules pulled Lawrence for the final 1:14 of play for an extra skater, but the hosts were unable to score the equalizer.   

Colby possessed a 41-23 edge in shots, as Klein registered 39 saves in the victory. Lawrence finished with 20 for the hosts. The Mules went 1-2 on the power play, while the Panthers went 0-2 with the extra skater.