The Student News Site of Utica University

The Tangerine

The Student News Site of Utica University

The Tangerine

The Student News Site of Utica University

The Tangerine

Observation from Utica’s 7-1 loss to the United States U18: Defensively the team looked solid but found themselves overextended

Kayleigh Sturtevant
The Pioneers despite a 7-1 loss outshot the U.S. 16-12 in the second period.

The Utica men’s ice hockey team started off the 2023-2024 campaign with its first squad match and only exhibition game before the regular season on Oct. 20 against the United States men’s U18 hockey team at the Adirondack Bank Center. 

The U.S., off an 8-2 victory over the Boston University Terriers the previous weekend, traveled to Utica as a part of the team’s college series.

Period by Period Breakdown

Utica’s front line, consisting of Shane Murphy, John Gutt and Matt Wood, got off to a quick start in the opening minutes giving the home side a barrage of opportunities in the offensive zone. From that point, the moment swung in the visitor’s favor. Boston College commit Teddy Stiga and Boston University commit Cole Eiserman scored the opening two goals in quick succession. 

The Pioneers were unsettled throughout most of the first period and at times found themselves out of position — chasing the U.S. On their first power play, the U.S. scored again as they outshot the Pioneers 17-10 to take a 3-0 at the end of the first. 

In the second period, Utica started to find their stride and handled the puck with poise and confidence, despite conceding an early goal courtesy of Brodie Ziemer 40 seconds in. As a result, they dwindled the shot margin and outshot the U.S. 16-12 in a scoreless second period.  

Cole Eiserman, a forward for the U.S. team, shined in the third period. He scored two more goals on his way to back-to-back weekend hat tricks. But despite a goaltender change for the Pioneers, the U.S. extended to a 7-0 lead. 

The Pioneers would get a consolation goal late in the third when freshman Eric Vitale received an assist from fellow forward John Gutt. With a combined 38 shots from both sides, the U.S. prevailed 7-1 in a convincing road trip win. 


Defensively the team looked solid but found themselves overextended at times, allowing the U.S. prime scoring opportunities. After intermission, the Pioneers moved away from trying to outplay the U.S. with physicality and started to make plays with the puck — looking their best in the second period. 

The team has a will to create plays and take skilled chances with the puck. We’re seeing a faster and more complete team in terms of their ability to play creatively with speed. Despite the scoreline, there’s still a lot to look forward to for this hockey team. However, there is no denying that there are still chemistry factors to be sorted out, but that’s expected with a team filled with 17 newcomers. It will take time to click and see the goal parades that fans are accustomed to – but the team has potential to succeed down the road in the national tournament. 

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About the Contributor
Kayleigh Sturtevant, Multimedia Editor
Class Year: Senior Major: Sports Management Previous Position: Multimedia Editor (Fall 2023)

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