On a gray rainy day in Gettysburg the Bullets and Shoremen faced-off once again with the Centennial Conference Championship at stake. The Bullets reached the finals with a 7-6 semi-final squeaker over the F&M Diplomats, while the Shoremen avenged their previous weekend's loss with a 12-8 victory over the Green Terror of Western Maryland College. As the rain faded and the sunshine came through the clouds a great game unfolded in Musselman Stadium. The gamne wouldn't be decided until late in the fourth quarter as the Bullets put together a 5-2 scoring run to pull away with a 12-10 Centennial Conference Championship victory.
After gaining possession on the opening face-off, the Bullets came down and the Shoremen promptly threw a zone out at them. This was no surprise due to the fact that Gettysburg struggled bigtime in Friday’s semi-final game against Franklin & Marshall who zoned them for almost the entire game, nearly pulling off an upset. The Bullets solved the Shoremen zone at the 13:37 mark when #17-John O’Bannon scored with a lefty laser to the corner off a feed from #16-Pete Milliman (the first of five assists on the day). The Bullets scored again just 13 seconds later off the ensuing face-off when #7-Pete Politi carried the ball into the Shoremen defensive end and dumped a pass to #20-Ric Bremer on the right wing, who without hesitation, turned and ripped one off-hip to give Gettysburg a 2-0 early lead. The next goal was scored at the 8:26 mark when #13-Jake Van Nostrand scored unassisted after he turned the corner and wrapped it around the goalie with his left. After regrouping in a timeout, the Shoremen won the next face-off and got on the board for the first time of the day when #6-Eric Kuehn finished a lefty rocket from low to high from #14-Jon Fellows. Washington had drawn a flag on the face-off and were able to convert on their first man-up of the day as Fellows fed #7-Steve Berger to make it a 3-2 ballgame. The Bullets scored next when #5-Nick Purkat converted another feed from Milliman on the low right wing to make it 4-2. The Shoremen finished off the first quarter scoring when #21-Craig Rentch came off a crease pick and finished a feed from #41-Randy Vane to make the score 4-3.
The Bullets struck first in the second quarter when #33-Wes Cadman bobbled a Milliman feed but gathered it in and finished in close with three Shoremen defenders swarming around him. The bullets scored again when Van Nostrand converted yet another Milliman feed at the 6:39 mark in the second to put them up 6-3. The Shoremen would finish off the first half scoring when Fellows hung up his defenseman behind and finished off a diving lefty shot as his man chased him around the other pipe. The score going into halftime was 6-4 with neither team being able to grab the game’s momentum and run with it.
The Shoremen opened the scoring in the second half on an extra man opportunity when Kuehn scored at the 13:35 mark. The Bullets answered back at 11:47, when Van Nostrand took a pass in close from Milliman, faked twice and wrapped it around into the back of the net. The Shoremen came right back at 8:28, when Rentch scored an unassisted goal to pull them within one, 7-6. The Shoremen would score again to make the score 7-7 when #37-Chris Edwards scored off a feed from Kuehn. The third quarter ended at a 7-7 tie, as the Shoremen were able to hold the Bullets to only one goal and notch three of their own.
The Shoremen were for real though, as they scored with only 24 ticks of the fourth quarter gone to take their first lead of the day at 8-7 when Fellows scored his second goal of the day off a feed from Rentch. While the Shoremen were able to grab their first lead of the day, it would be short lived as the Bullets would start a 5-2 run. The Bullets tied it back up at 8 at the 13:14 mark, when #22-Sean McTernan drove down the lane left-handed and finished one to the top shelf. The Bullets regained the lead at the 8:24 mark when Van Nostrand scored again as he was able to convert by turning the corner and wrapping it lefty from goal line extended. The Bullets would score again less than a minute later to take a two goal lead as Milliman carried it lefty across the face of the goal and uncorked one to the far, opposite corner. The two teams would play in a five on five situation as each team was called for offsetting one-minute penalties. The Shoremen would capitalize on the five vs five situation as Rentch scored his third goal of the day unassisted to pull them within 1 at 10-9. Gettysburg answered back at the 5:33 mark when Van Nostrand scored his fifth and final goal of the day on a feed from Bremer. The Bullets would take a three-goal lead when Milliman scored an unassisted goal at the 3:28 mark. The Shoremen scored with only ten seconds left in the game when Rentch scored his fourth and final goal of the day to make it 12-10.
This 12-10 Gettysburg victory gave the Bullets their fifth consecutive Centennial Conference Championship and an automatic bid into the NCAA playoffs. The loss puts the Shoremen in a must win situation this coming Saturday, May 4 when they face the Salisbury State Seagulls in the annual War on the Shore at Salisbury. If they win they will have a good chance at one of the two Pool C bids available in D3. The Bullets finish out their regular season with a record of 14-1 and will wait and see their draw for the NCAA’s.
Gettysburg vs. Washington College