Men’s hockey drops ECAC quarterfinal game

After having high expectations for this season, the streaky Spartan men’s hockey team limped into the playoffs looking to shake off the burden of a four-game losing streak. The Spartans came into the game looking for their second playoff win in school history and first ever ECAC title.

Those hopes were quickly torn to shreds, though, as New England College came into Spartan Arena as the lower sixth seed and completely dominated Castleton for a majority of the bout.

The Spartans went up 1-0 early on a goal by Dan Mauriello just three minutes into the contest, but the lead was quickly surrendered. NEC answered almost immediately, tying the game at one. Castleton then watched as NEC swiftly took the lead only 42 seconds later. Unfortunately for Castleton, NEC didn’t look back from there. As the final buzzer sounded, the score read 6-1 in favor of the visitors.

“It’s disappointing to lose in the playoffs. The regular season is one thing, but all that really matters is in the playoffs and we didn’t get it done,” captain Nick Westcott said.

The season was full of ups and downs for the Spartans, and unfortunately, it ended with a losing streak longer than any other during the season.

“The losing streak shouldn’t have affected us. We were ready to play. Of course it would have been nice to go in with momentum, but we were in the playoffs and just had to play our game,” Westcott added.

Now comes the long offseason that will give coach Alex Todd a chance to build a winning team for next season. On the bright side, Castleton will only lose four seniors after the season, and next year’s team looks as though they may have a shot to compete for the conference championship.

The Spartans ended the year 9-12-5 giving them their first losing season since 2006.

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