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Ice Dawgs Are Champs

Rally earns conference title in matchup of top-five teams

Luke Gamble/UGA Hockey

Success has earned Georgia’s club hockey program a lot of monikers, especially in recent years.

Add 2018-2019 conference champions to that list.

After advancing to the finals of the South Eastern Collegiate Hockey Conference tournament with impressive shutouts of Tennessee and Arkansas by scores of 14-0 and 4-0, the stage was set to play for the conference crown on Sunday at the Ford Ice Center in Antioch, Tenn., just outside Nashville.

The Ice Dawgs went on to capture the title, overcoming adversity in the process. Georgia, ranked fifth in the South Region in the latest ACHA rankings, beat fourth-ranked Ole Miss 4-2.

After spotting the Rebels a 2-0 lead, Georgia went to work, getting on the board with 1:12 left in the first on a goal by Chris Santa Maria. With the game in the second period, Georgia, as well as the Santa Maria namesake, was far from finished.

Caleb Santa Maria’s notch just shy of the game’s midpoint tied the game at 2-2, and Chris Santa Maria’s goal put the Dawgs on top.

Carter Penzien added what would be an insurance goal in the third period to secure not only the final margin of victory, but the conference crown as well for Georgia.

Another big top-five showdown is next Georgia on Friday against second-ranked Tampa. The game will be played in Clearwater, Fla.

Go Ice Dawgs!