Colorado College has had problems on Fridays lately, yet the Tigers have done well enough on Saturdays to gain second place in the Western Collegiate Hockey Association and earn a No. 5 ranking.
Unranked Minnesota Duluth sought to continue Colorado Collegeâ€™s winless Friday ways at the World Arena and break another streak.
The Bulldogs came into the game with five straight losses against the Tigers, the last three by shutout margins. UMD hadnâ€™t scored a goal in the series in the last three-plus games against goalie Richard Bachman.
UMD accomplished both in a 1-1 overtime tie before 5,541. Colorado College (9-4-4 and 6-3-2 in the WCHA) is 0-4-3 the last seven Fridays, while Bachmanâ€™s streak was snapped.
â€œWe gave up a goal in the first minute and that woke us up,â€ said UMD senior defenseman Josh Meyers, who had a second period power-play goal. â€œAfter that we just got better and better.
â€œWe didnâ€™t play our best, but we played decent. We still have to bear down more. We felt like [the Tigers] took a point from us.â€
Tigers’ junior winger Matt Overman of Bloomington, Minn. scored just 64 seconds into the game and Meyers tied it with 3:59 left in the second period for UMD (6-4-5 and 3-4-4). UMD led in shots on goal 33-29, as Alex Stalock matched Bachman with an excellent night
At home, Colorado College is 7-1-1 this season and 25-4-1 the last two years.
â€œAfter the first period, we said â€˜We have to get going and come back,â€™ and we have the players this year who can make plays and score goals, and we have the talent to make comebacks,â€ said Stalock, who has allowed five goals total the past four games as UMD has gone 2-0-2.
Overmanâ€™s first goal of the season came as he put in a Ryan Lowery rebound at the crease. UMD outshot the Tigers 13-6 in the first period, which included three power plays for the Bulldogs, ranked No. 6 in Division I in power-play efficiency. Bachmanâ€™s best saves came back-to-back on Drew Akins, on a power play, with 3:00 left.
The Bulldogs tied it as a Meyers’ shot from high in the middle slot found its way through traffic for his sixth goal of the season. The only goal of the period broke Bachmanâ€™s shutout streak versus the Bulldogs at 233 minutes, 47 seconds, just seven minutes short of four full games.
â€œThe game was pretty even, but Duluth had more Grade ‘A’ chances. They had a little more of an edge and looked good,â€ said Colorado College coach Scott Owens. â€œThere were times we looked tired, but thatâ€™s the way things have gone for us, especially on Fridays.â€
UMD had to kill 34 seconds of a five-on-three Tigers’ power play in the third period, and killed eight-of-eight for the game, and then survived a hectic five-minute overtime. The Tigers led 7-3 in shots on goal in sudden death, including a right wing rush by Mike Testwuide, initiated when UMD defenseman Evan Oberg crashed into a linesman and fell.
As Testwuide came in on Stalock, the junior goalie came up ice to challenge and knocked the puck off the wingerâ€™s stick with 2:30 left. Center Andreas Vlassopoulos of the Tigers was stopped on two other great scoring chances.
â€œOur penalty killers and Al did a good job. I was disappointed in our last couple of shift in overtime, but overall we played a solid road game,â€ said UMD coach Scott Sandelin.
Kevin Pates covers Minnesota-Duluth for the Duluth News-Tribune in Duluth, Minn.