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FGCU Edges Out Delaware in Exciting Weekend Sweep

Jazel Chang @jazel.jc

FGCU’s Division II club hockey team welcomed the 6-6-0-1 University of Delaware Fightin’ Blue Hens on Nov. 3 and 4. This was the Eagles’ final home doubleheader before going on the road for the University of Massachusetts showcase.

The Eagles entered after sweeping the Bowling Green Falcons, bumping their record to 8-1. They looked to continue their undefeated record of 6-0 at home so far.

Just as the first faceoff began in game one, keeping that record did not seem promising. Delaware scored first, putting the Eagles on the back foot early on.

FGCU rallied back, with sophomore Andrew Castello scoring the Eagles the first goal of the weekend with assists from his brother, junior Dylan Castello, and junior Holden Hertog.

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Goals began to be traded between the two teams, with the Blue Hens claiming their second goal off a power play. The power play started after the Eagles’ senior Dawson Zahorian acquired a game misconduct penalty which kept him out for the rest of the period.

Luckily, the Eagles recovered, claiming two more goals before the period concluded. Both goals were scored by sophomore Adam Beauvais, now tied for the most goals by an Eagle this season with nine total.

The second period started with the Eagles on the attack, scoring two goals inside eight minutes, bringing the score to 5-2. Hertog and Dylan Castello each snagged a goal after assisting on goals earlier in the game.

Delaware closed this gap, scoring two goals past the halfway point of the second period. This left the score at 5-4 with FGCU in the lead leading into the final period.

FGCU started the third period hot, scoring their sixth goal just past the first minute. Junior Shayne Tomlinson scored this goal for his ninth of the season, tied for the team lead in goals as well.

The game persisted with both teams trading the following two goals, ending the game with a 7-5 FGCU win. Sophomore Jake Court scored FGCU’s final goal of the game with assists from junior Thomas Zebley and Beauvais.

The Eagles looked to continue this winning streak heading into the second game of the weekend doubleheader. This time, the Eagles struck first as Court scored the first goal of the game, putting FGCU ahead early.

This lead quickly dissipated as Delaware scored two goals before the first period was all said and done. The Blue Hens took a 2-1 lead into the first intermission.

As the second period got underway, the playing style took a complete 180-degree turn from game one. Both teams and goalies made defensive stands, not allowing one goal the whole period. 

This continued into the third period until the final minute of the game.

FGCU tied the game 2-2 with 57 seconds left with a shot from junior Shayne Romback, his third goal of the year.

Less than 30 seconds later, junior Jack Cohen punched in the game-winning goal to take the lead for the first time this game at 3-2. 

All this chaos came to a close with multiple fights breaking out in the final 10 seconds. Eagle junior Michael Mucci and Blue Hen Michael Buchman got into a scuffle with 7 seconds left, leading to both of them being sent out of the game early.

No later than four seconds, another fight broke out. This one sent Eagles’ Cohen and senior Wesley Swenson out for the rest of the game with boarding and roughing penalties respectively.

Delaware had an opportunity to tie up the game late with FGCU down to just three players compared to the Blue Hens’ five for another power play. But, the last shot went wide right, allowing the Eagles to solidify a remarkable comeback.

As the game ended, one last tussle started after an already aggressive weekend battle. This involved the referees breaking up a Delaware player from one of the Eagles.

FGCU was able to continue their winning streak and moved their record up to 10-1 on the season. The Eagles return home to Hertz Arena on Nov. 17 and 18 where they will be welcoming the Lindenwood University Lions. FGCU will look for redemption, as their only loss this season came against the Lions during the Liberty University showcase last month.

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Jeffrey Hrunka
Jeffrey Hrunka, Eagle News Assistant Sports Editor
Jeffrey Hrunka is a junior double majoring in communications and journalism with a concentration in public relations. Jeffrey is from Fort Myers where his interest in sports journalism originated after falling in love with the world of motorsports. When he’s not working for Eagle News, he is usually spending time with friends, watching the New York Giants lose, or chilling in the pool.

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