Union College claims first national championship

23 Comments

In what was a true team effort, Union College has established itself as NCAA national champions for the first time.

The Dutchmen earned a 7-4 victory over top-ranked Minnesota in the title game last night. Eleven different players found the back of the net between the two teams in the high-scoring affair.

After Minnesota established two early leads, Union broke out with three goals over the span of just 1:54 minutes late in the first period, courtesy of Mike Vecchione, Eli Lichtenwald, and Daniel Ciampini.

“The staple of our team all year — we come in waves,” Union captain Mat Bodie said, per NCAA.com. “All three of those goals were pack-of-wolf goals where we were just throwing the puck on net.”

Minnesota managed to keep things interesting after that, but never retook the lead. On the Gophers side of things, 20-year-old forward Justin Kloos stood out with a goal and an assist.

“He controlled the game,” Minnesota coach Don Lucia said. “From my vantage point, he was the best player on the ice [Saturday].”

Philadelphia Flyers prospect Shayne Gostisbehere also recorded a goal and two assists for Union and had a remarkable plus-seven rating.