WATERVILLE, Maine -- Colby College, the defending New England Small College Athletic Conference champions, will head back to where it all started last year after the Mules closed out the regular season with a 3-3 overtime tie with Tufts University at Alfond Rink.
The Mules will be the sixth seed for the second year in a row and will again play at third-seeded Amherst College in a NESCAC quarterfinal game next Saturday. Colby beat the Mammoths on the way to last year's title.
By the numbers
* With the Mules celebrating Senior Day, goaltender Mack Burton made 39 saves in his final game at Alfond Rink.
* Tufts goalie Drew Hotte stopped 16 of his 35 saves in the second period.
* While there were six goals and 80 shots, neither team managed a power play goal.
* Colby (10-9-5 overall, 7-7-4 NESCAC) took a 1-0 lead after one period when senior co-captain Thomas Stahlhuth (pictured) scored his seventh of the season at 14:49. Velan Nandhakumaran's shot from the left point was saved by Hotte, but Stahlhuth lowered his head and battled to knock in the rebound.
* The Mules made it 2-0 on a transition goal by J.P. Schuhlen from Kienan Scott. The play started in Colby's end as Scott, while being nudged by a Tufts player, pushed a pass up to Schuhlen. The junior forward did not get all the puck on his shot and the bounce of the puck got past Hotte as he dove back to try and keep it from going over the line.
* Colby seemed to be in control when Mike Morrissey scored his eighth goal of the season with just two minutes left in the second period. Morrissey brought the puck out of Colby's zone and hit Brendan Murphy with a pass at the Tufts blue line. Murphy immediately got the puck over to Schuhlen at the right boards. Schuhlen waited for Morrissey to come streaking over the blue line and hit him with a nice pass for the score.
* Tufts, which clinched a playoff spot when Bowdoin College lost to Connecticut College, refused to give up and scored two goals in the final 1:15 of the second period.
* Tyler Scroggins, crossing the Colby blue line, pushed a pass to Cal LeClair on the left. LeClair beat a defenseman and came in hard on Burton, who was knocked over but still managed to poke the puck away. Clay Berger came in for the rebound and put Tufts on the board.
* After Hotte made a nice save on Colby's Quinn Doyle, the puck bounced to Hayden Smith, who had a long pas to Brendan Ryan. Smith hustled down the ice after the pass and was rewarded when Ryan had a centering pass as he was about to go around the goal with just 20 seconds left in the period.
* The Jumbos' LeClair tied the game at 3-3 at 3:03 of the third period. Trevor Spence had a shot from the point that was deflected directly to Anthony Farinacci, who hit a quick shot on Burton. The long rebound came straight out and LeClair was coming in up the middle to knock the puck in the goal.
2019 NESCAC Men’s Ice Hockey Championship
Quarterfinals – Saturday, February 23 (at Higher Seeds)
No. 8 Tufts at No. 1 Trinity – TBD
No. 7 Middlebury at No. 2 Wesleyan – TBD
No. 6 Colby at No. 3 Amherst – TBD
No. 5 Williams at No. 4 Hamilton – TBD
Semifinals – Saturday, March 2 (at Highest Remaining Seed)
Highest Remaining Seed vs. Lowest Remaining Seed
Remaining Quarterfinal Winners
Championship – Sunday, March 3
NOTE: If both a men’s and a women’s quarterfinal game are being played at the same site, in odd years, the men’s game will be played first.
March 8, 2019 Colby has 71 honored for NESCAC Winter All-Academic Team
March 6, 2019 Mules have eight on NESCAC Winter All-Sportsmanship Team
February 26, 2019 O'Connor named to All-NESCAC First Team for men's hockey
February 23, 2019 Defending champs fall at Amherst this time
February 16, 2019 Men's hockey settles for tie, will defend title starting next Saturday
February 9, 2019 Men's hockey wins road game over 10th-ranked Wesleyan, 4-1
February 8, 2019 Men's hockey drops game in overtime to Bantams, 3-2
February 7, 2019 O'Connor named semifinalist for Concannon Award
February 2, 2019 Stahlhuth's late goal helps Mules to overtime tie with Amherst
February 1, 2019 Men's hockey scores four in third period to pull out NESCAC win
January 29, 2019 Men's hockey falls short in comeback attempt against USM
January 26, 2019 Men's hockey beats Bowdoin behind Stahlhuth, Burton
January 19, 2019 Men's hockey nearly makes dramatic comeback
January 18, 2019 Scott scores twice for men's hockey in big NESCAC victory
January 15, 2019 Men's hockey falls short in rematch with UNE
January 11, 2019 Men's hockey falls just short in NESCAC game
January 5, 2019 Men's hockey falls in conference game to Mammoths
January 4, 2019 Men's hockey has unbeaten streak ended at seven
December 31, 2018 Men's hockey wins again, unbeaten in seven straight
December 12, 2018 Tucci earns National Men's Hockey Team of the Week honor
December 10, 2018 Tucci named NESCAC Men's Hockey Player of the Week
December 8, 2018 Men's hockey records third straight shutout, beat Tufts
December 7, 2018 Men's hockey explodes for eight goals, earns another shutout
December 4, 2018 Tucci earns first shutout for men's hockey in win over Saint Anselm
December 1, 2018 Men's hockey settles for overtime tie with rival Bowdoin
November 26, 2018 Tickets to be distributed for Colby/Bowdoin hockey game
November 25, 2018 Men's hockey wins Face-Off Classic with 1-1 tie Sunday
November 24, 2018 O'Connor, Morrissey lead men's hockey to victory over Potsdam
November 17, 2018 Clarke has first goal, assist for men's hockey in tough loss
November 16, 2018 Men's hockey raises NESCAC, NCAA banners but fall to Panthers
November 15, 2018 NESCAC champs ready to start new season Friday at home
October 22, 2018 NESCAC champion men's hockey to start season ranked 11th