Basile, Union Stifle RPI; Earn Shot at Liberty Crown
from press release
SCHENECTADY, N.Y. - Junior Stefan Basile made 11 saves as Union held Rensselaer to a season-low three goals in defeating the Engineers, 8-3, in the Liberty League Tournament Semifinals at Frank Bailey Field. The Dutchmen (13-2), the ninth-ranked team in the nation, advance to the championship game at top-seeded RIT on Sunday at noon. RIT, the top-ranked team in Division III, defeated St. Lawrence, 19-9, in the other semifinal. RPI finishes the year with an 11-5 record while Union matches a school record for wins in a season (13).
Basile had seven saves in the first half and four more in the second in backstopping Union to the victory. He is now 11-2 on the season. As a team Union allowed just 29 shots to the Engineers, who came into the game averaging 42.9 per game. The Dutchmen were also 5 for 5 on the man-down.
Union held a 3-1 lead after the first quarter with Rob Santangelo scoring twice. The senior attack opened the scoring five minutes in with an unassisted shot from the left side. Rensselaer tied the game 3:01 later when freshman Matt Hall took a pass from Casey Colligan and scored his 25th goal of the season. Santangelo got the goal back for a 2-1 Union lead with 3:27 left and the Dutchmen increased their advantage 1:10 later on a goal by Tom Stanton.
Union made it a 4-1 game on a Nolan Stauffer goal, which was set up by Santangelo, 2:15 into the second quarter. RPI freshman Jake Weidner pulled the Engineers back to within two goals with 9:31 to go in the first half. Nearlly nine minutes later, Union took a 5-2 lead when junior Adam Rosenthal scored off a pass from Charlie Ross.
Cameron Slatton had the first goal of the second half to give the home team a 6-2 lead with 11:53 to play in the third quarter. Rosenthal notched his second of the game and 11th of the season exactly six minutes after Slatton scored.
Freshman Jack Scheufele scored an unassisted goal with 7:09 left in the fourth quarter for an 8-2 lead for Union. Colligan made it 8-3 when he scored after carrying the ball around the cage and firing into the top half of the net with 3:35 to go. Union killed a subsequent man-up, however, taking the momentum away from the Engineers and closing out the game.
RPI's Alex Castronovo had nine saves in the loss for RPI, which dropped its second game of the year to the Dutchmen. The two teams met on April 12, also on Bailey Field, and Union won in double overtime, 12-11.
Union and RIT met during the regular season with the Tigers prevailing, 8-7, in Rochester on April 16.
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