Penn State one win from Frozen Four

From Mirror reports

CINCINNATI, Ohio — The Penn State men’s ice hockey team scored five goals in the third period to capture a 10-3 victory over the the Union Dutchmen in the Midwest Regional semifinals of the NCAA Tournament Saturday at U.S. Bank Arena.

Penn State improved to 25-11-2. The Lions move to the Midwest Regional Final against top-seeded Denver this evening at 6 p.m. on ESPNU. Union’s season ended at 25-10-3. If the Nittany Lions can knock off the No. 1 seed in the region, they will earn a trip to the Frozen Four in two weeks.

Penn State opened the scoring as sophomore Chase Berger threw the puck toward the net from the right side half wall and freshman Brandon Biro redirected it over the shoulder of Union goaltender Alex Sakellaropoulos for the 1-0 lead at 11:05 of the first period.

The Dutchmen came right back just 1:07 later as they took advantage of a defensive zone miscue by the Nittany Lions and Brendan Taylor spun in the right slot and fired off the far post and in for the 1-1 tie.

Penn State regained the one-goal advantage as sophomore Chase Berger redirected a wrist-shot from classmate Andrew Sturtz below the left dot and past Sakellaropoulos at 13:26, however, Union came back just 24 seconds later tying the score again Spencer Foo received a pass from behind the net and one-touched it past Nittany Lion freshman Peyton Jones for the 2-2 score.

Penn State came out for the second period flying and freshman Kris Myllari blasted a one timer from just inside the blue line off a feed from classmate Liam Folkes that beat Sakellaropoulos high-glove for the 3-2 lead at 1:59 of the middle frame.

Foo once again tied the score as he registered his second tally of the game on the man-advantage as he sliped through the crease and slid the puck past the left pad of Jones for the 3-3 score at 7:54.

The Nittany Lions again grabbed the lead as freshman Blake Gober sent a beautiful pass to Berger for a tap in goal on the right side of the crease for the 4-3 score at 9:35 of the second period.

Penn State pushed the lead to a pair of goals after senior Dylan Richard (Sherwood Park, Alberta) fired home a rebound off Myllari’s initial blast from the left half wall for the 5-3 lead at 14:13 of the second.

Freshman Nate Sucese then got in on the scoring action as he banged home a rebound off senior David Goodwin’s initial shot for the 6-3 lead at 1:10 of the third period.

Denis Smirnov, Nikita Pavlychev, Vince Pedrie and Sucese tacked on goals to set the final at 10-3.

Jones stopped 22 shots to improve to 23-9-2 on the season

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