Men’s hockey off to semifinals

It started with 12 teams, now four remain.

Down four goals in game one of the three game series  this past weekend against the Boston College Eagles, Vermont looked as if it was headed for the exits, even after scoring two goals to bring the game within two.

“It’s backs against the wall. If we want to keep playing, we need to win two now,” head coach Kevin Sneddon said after the game.

Game two saw sophomore Brady Shaw score his 18th and 19th goals of the season, both on power plays in the first period. Sophomore Brendan Bradley scored the empty net goal and senior netminder Brody Hoffman had a career-high 39 saves as the Cats evened up the series.

In do-or-die games, any player can step up under pressure.

Sophomore Jarrid Privitera scored the lone goal in the contest just over two minutes into the first period. His older brother, junior Alexx Privitera, tallied the only assist.

Hoffman had 36 saves for the shutout. Including game one, where he replaced sophomore goaltender Mike Santaguida, Hoffman played around seven and a half periods of hockey. He allowed one goal.

“Hoffman was our MVP of the series, for sure,” Sneddon said. “We’ve played six games in ten nights. That’s the heart of a lion in that locker room. I’m very, very proud of our guys here tonight.”

The Catamounts travel to the TD Garden, in Boston, Massachusetts, this weekend for the semifinals of the Hockey East Championship.

“We’re gonna battle, take this momentum forward, and bring it into the Garden,” forward Jarrid Privitera said.