Colton, Esposito Send Vermont Past Merrimack, 2-1
Ross Colton and Alex Esposito each score goal and assist for Catamounts

Freshman Alex Esposito scored a goal and an assist for the Catamounts
Prd Time  Team Score Type Scored By Assists
1st 9:34  MER1-0 PP Brett Seney (9)Jared Kolquist/14, Sami Tavernier/8
2nd 4:56  VER1-1 EV Alex Esposito (7)Christian Evers/4, Ross Colton/3
2nd 17:50  VER2-1 EV GW Ross Colton (13)Matt Alvaro/5, Alex Esposito/7
Scoring 1st 2nd 3rd Final
Vermont  0202
Merrimack  1001
Shots on Goal 1st 2nd 3rd SOG
Vermont  1512734
Merrimack  831324
Team Stats and Records  PP PIM SHGF
Vermont (6-15-4)  0/3 1/2 0
Merrimack (7-14-4)  1/1 3/6 0
Vermont Goaltending MIN GA 1 2 3 Saves
Stefanos Lekkas (W, 6-14-3)60:001 731323
Merrimack Goaltending MIN GA 1 2 3 Saves
Craig Pantano (L, 7-8-2)58:182 1510732
Empty Net1:420     

NORTH ANDOVER, Mass. - The Merrimack College men's ice hockey team was edged by visiting Vermont on Friday night by a 2-1 final at Lawler Rink. Both sides close out the two-game set back in North Andover tomorrow night on a game that that will be broadcast on NESN and NESN National.

The Basics

Score: Vermont 2, Merrimack 1
Records: Merrimack (7-14-4, 4-10-2 HEA) | Vermont (6-15-4, 3-9-3 HEA)
Location: North Andover, Mass. | Lawler Rink
Attendance: 2185
Game Duration: 2:07

Rapid Recap

- Merrimack and Vermont battled through a back-and-forth and evenly controlled first frame, with the difference coming on the power play. Senior Brett Seney buried his team-leading ninth marker of the year midway through the period, and that one-goal lead went unchanged heading into the break.

- The Catamounts flipped the script with a dominant second period that saw them outshoot the hosts by nine (12-3), with two of those shots finding the back of the net on odd-man rushes, as the Warriors suddenly found themselves behind by one heading to the third.

- Merrimack had to fend off two Vermont power plays in the third period and did so successfully while generating a game-high 13 shots on target. However, the Catamounts and goaltender Stefanos Lekkas kept the Warriors at bay the rest of the way, giving the visitors first blood in the weekend series.

Scoring Summaries

Goal #1 (MC, 1-0): Seney gave the hosts the lead while on their first power play of the night, sneaking a wrist shot from the near circle over Lekkas' shoulder. Seney started the pay with a puck retrieval in the slot, got it to senior Jared Kolquist who handed off with sophomore Sami Tavernier, backhanded a pass to Seney on the left wing, and the latter took care of the rest.

Goal #2 (UVM, 1-1): Alex Esposito drew the Catamounts even on an odd-man rush marker in transition at 4:56 of the second. Esposito started the 3-on-2 rush from the defensive zone, going across to Ross Colton in the neutral zone at the opposite wing. He gained the line, dropped to Christian Evers at the left point, who found Esposito with a perfect pass at the back post for a one-timer.

Goal #3 (UVM, 1-2): Colton put the Catamounts ahead on a breakaway goal at 17:50 of the second. Esposito played the puck out of the Catamount zone from the right point up to Matt Alvaro in the neutral zone. Colton went blazing down the right wing and took a perfect pass through the defense and tucked a breakaway attempt into the net at the blocker side post.

Notes and Notables

- Seney netted his team-high ninth goal of the year, pushing his career total to 106 points.

- Merrimack moved to 17-16-7 all-time against Vermont while seeing sits record at Lawler against the Catamounts fall to 8-6-4. Vermont picked up its first win in North Andover since Feb. 22, 2014 (4-3).

- Merrimack remained winless when being held to fewer than three goals this season (0-13-2); the Warriors are conversely 7-1-2 when scoring three or more goals.

- Merrimack fell to 3-4-4 this season when scoring the game's first goal and 2-3-4 when having a lead at the end of 20 minutes.

- Goaltenders: Craig Pantano (32 saves, 7-8-2) // Stefanos Lekkas (23 saves, 6-14-3)

- Power Plays: Merrimack (0-1) | UVM (0-3)

- Shots on Goal (MC-UVM): 8-15 // 3-12 // 13-7 -- 24-34

Merrimack Lineup

Petti | L. Larsson | McBride
Hennig | Seney | Irvine
Coomes | Bales | Tavernier
Babcock | A. Larsson | Tibbet
Kolquist | Titcomb
Biega | Carle
Dockery | Kovacevic

Up Next

Merrimack and Vermont conclude their weekend series back at Lawler Rink tomorrow night, with puck drop set for 7 p.m. The game will also be broadcast live on NESN and NESN National.