Minnesota State vs Bemidji State Highlights 10/23/15
BEMIDJI, Minn. (Sanford Center) –Special teams play was the name of the game in Friday’s Western Collegiate Hockey Association opener.
The Bemidji State University penalty-kill unit kept Minnesota State University, Mankato off the scoreboard on all six times it was call upon. The Beavers also netted a second-period, power-play goal to finish 1-for-6 on the night, but BSU got bit by the short-handed goal twice in a 3-2 loss.
The Mavericks, who came into the game 0-4-0 on the season and were held without a goal in their three previous games, broke out of their scoring slump, doubling their scoring for the season with the short-handed goals.
BSU, now 1-2-1 overall and 0-1-0 in WCHA play, looks to event the series tomorrow at 7:07 p.m. when it again hosts Minnesota State (1-4-0; 1-0-0 WCHA).
Typical of this season, the Beavers were quick to strike. Brendan Harms picked the puck off a MSU defender’s stick and found Charlie O’Connor in the slot for his second goal of the season at the 3:51 mark of the first.
Clint Lewis was whistled for his second penalty at the 18:01 mark of the period, putting BSU on power-play, but Minnesota State tied the game 34 seconds later when Carter Foguth dug the puck out of his own defensive corner and fired a pass up the ice to a streaking Bryce Gervais. The senior beat BSU goaltender Michael Bitzer for the goal.
Aided by three power-play opportunities in the second period, the Beavers took the lead at the 18:57 mark, but it wasn’t until the Mavericks were called for back-to-back penalties that the Beavers capitalized on the 5-on-3 power-play chance. Harms picked up his career-high second assist of the evening on the Gerry Fitzgerald goal.
Taking a 2-1 lead into the final period of play, Bemidji State saw Minnesota State use a power-play opportunity to set up a goal by Brad McClure at the 5:19 mark before Teddy Blueger put the Mavericks in the lead for good at the with 12 minutes to go in the game.
Bitzer was tagged with the loss, making 17 saves on 20 shots faced in 58:04 between the pipes. He falls to 1-2-1 on the year. His counterpart, Jason Pawloski (1-0-1) earned the win in his collegiate debut, turning aside 18-of-20 shots faced in 59:59 of action.
Nestled in Northern Minnesota’s wooded region and located on the shore of Lake Bemidji, Bemidji State University sponsors 15 varsity athletic programs with NCAA Division I men’s and women’s hockey membership in the Western Collegiate Hockey Association, while its 13 NCAA Division II programs hold membership in the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference.