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Sacco's Late Goal Lifts St. Norbert Past MSOE

From Sports Information Director, February 18, 2017 | Men's Hockey
by Dan Lukes, dan.lukes@snc.edu, (920) 403-4077

DE PERE - Dominick Sacco's goal with 37 seconds remaining pushed St. Norbert College past Milwaukee School of Engineering 5-3 in a Northern Collegiate Hockey Association game at Cornerstone Community Center.

The Green Knights (19-5-1, 15-4-1) will host a NCHA Harris Cup Playoffs semifinal game at 7 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 25 against the winner of Wednesday's first-round game between College of St. Scholastica and Northland College.

Sacco's goal snapped a 3-3 tie. The Green Knights had a rush into the MSOE defensive zone, and Sacco took a pass from Noah Nelson and tucked it just inside the post past the leg of a sprawling Raiders' goaltender Zach Woodman. Pijus Rulevicius also assisted on the goal, which was Sacco's seventh of the year.

The Green Knights scored afterward on Steven Phillips' empty-net goal as time expired.

St. Norbert got the early lead at 8:37 of the first period when Tanner Froese scored for the 12th time this season. MSOE countered with a power-play goal by Eric Tien at 10:19, but Brad Pung added a power-play marker of his own at 16:48 for a 2-1 lead after one period.

The Green Knights extended their lead to 3-1 when Blake Thompson hit a streaking Riley Christensen coming off the bench following an expired penalty, with Christensen cleanly finishing at 7:00 of the second period. The Raiders answered with another power-play goal, this one from Jerad Tafoya at 11:05. MSOE tied the game at 3-3 when Gage Christianson finished off a series of end-to-end rushes with a goal at 12:52 of the period.

Sacco and Christensen had assists for two-point games, while Rulevicius finished with two assists.

St. Norbert outshot MSOE 32-15. The Green Knights were 1-for-5 on the power play, while the Raiders were 2-for-4.

T.J. Black earned the win in net for St. Norbert, making six saves in 27:08 in relief of Tony Kujava - who made six stops. Woodman made 27 saves for MSOE.