Senior Steve Nelson scored the game winner on Saturday.

Men's Hockey Tops Southern Maine, 3-2


December 31, 2005

MIDDLEBURY, VT – Senior forward Steve Nelson (Wayzata, MN) scored his first goal of the season with less than four minutes remaining in the third period to break a 2-2 tie and lift the Amherst men's hockey team over the University of Southern Maine in the opening round of the Holiday Classic hosted by Middlebury College. The Jeffs move on to face the winner of a Middlebury/Babson matchup, in the championship game at 4 p.m. on Sunday.

In a penalty-ridden, but scoreless first frame, Southern Maine outshot Amherst 11-5 but were 0-5 on power plays. Mark Carragher got the Huskies on the board early in the second period with a second chance shot on their sixth power play opportunity. The teams traded penalties for much of the frame, but neither could capitalize until Jeff rookie Jeff Landers (Hanover, MA) knotted the score at 1-1 with an unassisted tally at 16:03. Landers teamed with sophomore Andrew Schremp (Denver, CO) to assist senior co-captain Jack Greeley (Scituate, MA) with just 1:05 remaining.

With less than five minutes to go in final period, Southern Maine threatened the Amherst lead, as Mark Santuccio put one away to tie it at 2-2, but Nelson's nifty conversion from first-year Shane Lennox (N. Vancouver, British Columbia) only a minute later squashed the Huskies' hopes. The Jeff defense was strong down the stretch, turning away a flurry of last-ditch efforts to preserve the win for Amherst. Junior netminder Josh Fillman had 29 stops in the win, while Southern Maine's Ryan Sullivan turned away 10 shots.