Coming home off a tough split on the road at Ferris State, Bowling Green looked to gain some momentum against a team in Northern Michigan that they swept on the road back in November, one of only two sweeps this season by the Falcons.
Friday’s game didn’t go as they had hoped even though the Falcons outshot the Wildcats 35-23. The Wildcats were the only team to light the lamp in a 3-0 victory.
Northern Michigan’s two-goal first period was the difference in the game, and as usual the Falcons took some unnecessary penalties, leading to the first goal of the game. Already down a man, Alex Rauhauser took a tripping penalty that made it five-on-three for 1:29.
“Those two penalties were a momentum change for sure. We took two bad penalties and they took advantage of our mistakes,” said Falcons coach Chris Bergeron.
Shane Sooth struck first on the power play, at the 6-minute mark.
“I sure didn’t think that would be the game but it was,” Bergeron said.
Just over five minutes later Zach Diamantoni made it 2-0 on a nice feed from Robbie Payne, who also assisted on the first goal. The Falcons held an 11-10 shots advantage in what was a pretty brisk first period.
The second period turned out to be the difference in the game. Bowling Green pelted Atte Tolvanen with 16 shots but they were turned away each and every time. Tolvanen finished with a 35-save shutout.
“We knew he was much better than he played tonight,” Bergeron said. “We let him see a bunch of shots and when you’re at this level of hockey if you can see pucks your going to stop them.”
The third period was again mostly played from the red line into Northern Michigan’s zone as it took until the 11-minute mark for the Wildcats to register a shot on goal, but they hung on and added an empty net goal by Payne – his third point of the night – at 19:08 to seal the road victory. These two teams finish off the weekend and season series on Saturday night in Bowling Green.
At Bemidji State 4, No. 2 Michigan Tech 2
The Beavers erased a 2-1 deficit with a three-goal third period to defeat the second-place Huskies. Mike Soucier tied the score at 3:45 and Leo Fitzgerald netted the game winner just more 2 minutes later. Mitch Reinke and Cliff Watson scored for the Huskies.
At Alaska 3, Alabama-Huntsville 0
Chad Stanley had a goal and an assist, John Mullally and Nikolas Koberstein scored goals and Tayler Munson added three assists for the Nanooks, who got a 31-save shutout from Davis Jones. The Chargers generated 18 shots in the third period but could not beat Jones.
At Alaska-Anchorage 4, Minnesota State 3
Tad Kozun’s goal with 1:54 remaining lifted the Seawolves over the Mavericks despite being outshot 43-17. Olivier Mantha made 40 saves for Alaska-Anchorage, which took a 3-1 lead on goals by David Trinkberger, Nicolas Erb-Ekholm and Mason Mitchell. Minnesota State got third-period goals from Sean Flanagan and Marc Michaelis to keep the outcome in doubt.