It was a good weekend to pull the goaltender at the end of the game. In at least four games, the extra attacker proved to be the difference, as the teams that were behind used the extra man to score a goal in the final minutes of the games.
In the conference races, Milwaukee School of Engineering (MSOE) edged closer to Adrian in the MCHA with a tie and a win on the road.
St. Thomas is cruising to another MIAC regular season title, while all other teams are battling for the other four playoff spots.
The NCHA began the single-game series part of the schedule over the weekend. St. Norbert may be in the lead of the league, but St. Scholastica and Wisconsin-River Falls are still in the hunt for the regular season title and first round playoff bye.
With an epic performance during the weekend, MSOE earned three-of-four points at Adrian and pulled two points closer to the MCHA lead. The teams traded goals in each period on Friday in a 3-3 overtime tie. MSOE scored first in each period, but Adrian had an answer each time. Ryan Gieseler scored the game’s equalizing goal with 15 seconds left in regulation for Adrian. Saturday’s rematch proved to be a much different affair, with MSOE dominating play and capping off the weekend with a 6-1 victory that silenced the packed Adrian crowd. Brothers Jordan and Josh Keizer led MSOE with two goals apiece in the game. Connor Toomey made 59 saves for MSOE during the series.
While the conference leaders were battling each other, Marian could not close the gap in the standings, as it split with Finlandia in their weekend series. Tom Glomski scored twice for Marian in Friday’s 4-1 win. Marian appeared to be in control on Saturday, taking a 3-1 lead into the third, but Finlandia clawed its way back into the game and tied it with 19 seconds remaining on the clock. Alex Heinonen scored, as Finlandia pulled its goalie in favor of the extra man. Clancy MacNeil scored at 2:19 in overtime to complete the dramatic come-from-behind victory for Finlandia.
Lawrence traveled to the south shore of Lake Superior and returned home with a weekend sweep of Northland. Peter Emery stopped all 29 shots from Northland to pace Lawrence to a 3-0 win on Friday. Gustav Lindgren and Sam Johnson scored in the final minute of the game, as Lawrence came from behind to beat Northland 3-2 on Saturday. Lindgren scored with the goalie pulled at 19:35 of the third period, and Johnson added the game-winning goal just nine seconds later.
Lake Forest earned its first series sweep of the season, as it defeated Concordia (Wis.) in a home-and-home series. Lake Forest scored four times in the first period on its way to a 6-2 win on Friday. Tom Bark and Ethan Goldberg had a goal and an assist for Lake Forest. Once again Lake Forest started out strong, as it built a 3-0 lead after two periods to cruise to a 5-1 win on Saturday. Luke Swardenski had two goals and added an assist for Lake Forest.
St. Thomas padded its lead in the MIAC, as it swept the league’s best defensive team, St. Olaf. St. Thomas pushed its winning streak to eight games, as three different players scored en route to a 3-2 victory Friday. St. Olaf scored first, but St. Thomas scored the next two goals while on a power play to take a 2-1 lead. Rob Philipp scored the eventual game-winner at 7:50 of the second period, as the two teams were even strength. On Saturday, Rob Vannelli provided all the scoring for St. Thomas, including the game-winning power-play goal in overtime, in a 2-1 overtime win. St. Olaf had a breakaway two minutes into overtime, but was called for goaltender interference as the shot sailed high. Drew Fielding was in goal for St. Thomas in both victories, as the team extended its win streak to nine games, the current longest in the NCAA this season.
Coming off a bye week, Gustavus Adolphus jumped back into the fray that is second place in the MIAC standings, earning three-of-four points against fellow second place team Concordia (Minn.). Zach May and Ross Ring-Jarvi scored two goals each to pace Gustavus to a 4-0 lead after two periods in the series opener Friday, hut, showing grit and determination, Concordia (Minn.) dominated the third period, as four different players scored to tie the game. Braden Rahman scored with 36 seconds left in regulation to give Concordia (Minn.) the 4-4 overtime draw. The following evening, John McClean stopped 24 shots as Gustavus used an aggressive forecheck, giving the freshman netminder a 2-0 shutout victory for his second shutout of the season. Gustavus outshot Concordia (Minn.) by a 45-24 margin Saturday.
For a brief period of time, St. John’s moved into the mix of second place in the MIAC, as it defeated Hamline in a Thursday matchup, but Hamline jumped back into a tie for second place the following night as it turned the tables on St. John’s in a home-and-home series. After giving up the first goal Thursday, St. John’s scored four unanswered goals from four different players to earn the 4-1 win. The next night, St. John’s scored first, before Hamline returned the favor and scored five goals from five different players in a 5-1 victory to earn the series split.
Although Augsburg is in second-to-last place in the MIAC, it stands only two points back of second place in the conference thanks to a weekend sweep of St. Mary’s. Niklas Almstrom scored the game-winning goal in the second period as Augsburg won 3-2 on Friday. Trevor Doden picked up the hat-trick in dramatic fashion on Saturday for Augsburg. The senior tallied his first collegiate hat trick with an unassisted goal 2:43 into overtime to give Augsburg a hard-fought 5-4 victory.
St. Scholastica and Wisconsin-Superior began the weekend early, skating to a 3-3 overtime draw Thursday. Wis.-Superior led 3-0 halfway through the third period before St. Scholastica scored three straight goals to put the game into overtime.
Justin Brossman’s goal in overtime helped break Wisconsin-River Falls’ 0-for-18 streak on St. Norbert’s home ice with a 4-3 win Friday. After St. Norbert built a 3-2 third period lead, Jeff Burke scored for Wis.-River Falls, with the goalie pulled at 19:37 of the period.
Wis.-Superior earned two of its three points on the weekend with a 4-2 win over Wisconsin-Stout. Wis.-Superior constructed a 4-0 lead going into the final period in Friday’s game.
Wisconsin-Stevens Point started out the weekend strong with a 5-2 victory Friday over Wisconsin-Eau Claire. Wis.-Steven point broke a 2-2 tie by scoring three times in the third period.
St. Norbert rebounded from Friday’s overtime loss at home with a 5-4 win over Wis.-Eau Claire. Joe Perry scored his second goal of the game at 18:11 of the third period to secure the win and a one-point lead in the NCHA standings. Kyle Stroh also had two goals for St Norbert.
St. Scholastica kept the pressure on St. Norbert, as it defeated Wis.-Stout 3-2 Saturday. The NCHA’s leading goal scorer, Brett Corcoran, had the game-winner for St. Scholastica.
Wis.-Stevens Point made a statement to the conference by soundly defeating Wis.-River Falls 4-1 Saturday. Wis.-Stevens Point jumped out to a 3-0 first period lead, scoring two of those goals on the power play.