Williams vs. Bowdoin
May 4, 2008
The Game Story:
MIDDLEBURY, Vt. - Williams jumped out to a 4-1 lead over
Bowdoin and cruised to a 9-4 victory over the Polar Bears in the NESCAC
finals held at Middlebury College on Sunday afternoon. With the win, the
10-5 Ephs earn the conference's automatic bid to the NCAA tournament. The
NCAA will announce the remaining teams on Sunday night. Since the inception
of the NESCAC tournament in 2001, Williams has never made it past the
semifinals, while Bowdoin (11-6) has made four semifinal appearances and the
finals in the inaugural event.
The Ephs got on the board with a pair of goals in the first
quarter, including a man-up score by David Hawley for a 2-0 lead with 4:26
left. Cullen Winkler answered for the Polar Bears on a driving shot from the
right side, cutting the lead to 2-1 with 3:41 on the clock. Michael Vrla
scored the next two for Williams, highlighted by his second tally off a
dodge to the doorstep of Bowdoin's starting goalie Gordon Convery for a 4-1
lead after one quarter.
Hawley extended the Ephs' lead to 5-1 in the in the opening
minute of the second quarter with a bullet from the left side set up by a
feed from Dixon Hargrove. The Polar Bears scored the final goal of the half
on Owen Smith's goal at the 1:15 mark, setting the score at 5-2 at
Smith got Bowdoin within two, rolling past a great pick for his
second goal of the game at 10:33 in the third quarter. Williams responded,
scoring the next four goals, building a 9-3 advantage at the 4:33 mark in
the fourth quarter. Hargrove had a pair during the run, including his tally
set-up by Bryan Wrapp after an Ephs timeout. The Polar Bears added the final
goal with 3:19 remaining as Matt Legg collected a feed from Harry Ashfourth,
capping the scoring at 9-4.
Vrla led the Ephs with three goals, while Hawley and Hargrove
added a pair of tallies and two assists apiece, while Smith's two goals
paced Bowdoin. Michael Gerbush made 13 saves in net for Williams, allowing
four goals. Convery stopped four shots and gave up five goals in the first
half for the Polar Bears, while teammate Alex Gluck made four saves and
allowed four goals in the second half.