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Bemidji State’s Aaron McLeod uses his body to shield the puck from Alaska-Anchorage’s Alex Gellert at center ice in WCHA action during the second period of Friday’s game at the Sanford Center. BSU Photo Services

MEN'S HOCKEY: Bemidji, Anchorage battle to 2-2 tie

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BEMIDJI – Jeff Jubinville had already scored twice in the third period when he saw Jordan George’s rebound flying in front of him with just less than three minutes to go in regulation.

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The Bemidji State forward reached out and patted the puck with his hand past Alaska Anchorage goaltender Rob Gunderson. The light went on behind Gunderson and the goal horn sounded, but even Jubinville wasn’t sure that it would count and break the 2-2 tie.

“I hit it with my glove, then I went down and didn’t see it go in,” the junior from Edmonton, Alberta said. “I wish it would have hit someone, but what can you do?”

The goal was called back following a video review, and, after a few close calls for both sides and a scoreless overtime period, both the Beavers and the Seawolves earned a point with a 2-2 tie in WCHA Friday night at the Sanford Center.

Jubinville, playing on the top line Friday after BSU senior captain Ben Kinne went down with an injury, scored twice in the third period to help the Beavers (2-5-2, 1-4-2 WCHA) rally from a 1-0 deficit after the second period.

“Jeff Jubinville has been our most improved player,” BSU head coach Tom Serratore said. “He’s getting a lot of ice time right now, and there’s a lot of trust between him and the coaching staff. Today he showed he was an offensive player. He’s just more and more confident and more comfortable out there.

“With Ben Kinne’s injury we inserted him on that top line and he was a great player tonight.”

The Seawolves (2-3-4, 0-2-3 WCHA) took the lead late in the second period, but Jubinville evened the score just 2:14 into the third. Jordan George made an outlet pass to David Boehm, who was to the right of the net. Jubinville was standing right in front and had no trouble getting it past Gunderson’s outstretched stick after receiving the pass.

BSU took a 2-1 lead a few minutes later when Jubinville beat Gunderson top shelf from the slot at 11:17.

After the Beavers lost both games of last weekend’s series against Michigan Tech – including one in which they led 4-1 – Jubinville said they were looking for more third period energy Friday.

“We tried to get some energy and keep working hard,” he said. “It’s always good to get some goals in, and we needed the points.”

UAA tied the game at the 15:29 mark of the third. Austin Coldwell scored on BSU goaltender Mathieu Dugas after beating two BSU defenders to the puck. The Beavers couldn’t get the clear and Coldwell made them pay.

Dugas made 26 saves in regulation and kept the Beavers in the game in the overtime period with four saves – although the Seawolves’ Alex Gellart hit the pipe at the 2:20 mark of the extra frame. The puck bounced out rather than in, and Dugas was glad to get a little lucky there.

“Oh yeah, I was relieved,” the senior said. “I saw the replay after the whistle and it was a close one.”

Dugas also made a big blocker save on a 2-on-1 with 30 seconds remaining in overtime to preserve the tie.

“We got a little luck right there in the overtime, and that was nice to see,” Serratore said. “We still need to play a little better in the overtime; we’ve got to manage the puck. We can’t give up a 2-on-1 like we did later in the period. It got a little chaotic out there, but it is what it is.”

UAA had five power plays in the game compared to none for BSU, but the Beavers were a perfect 0-for-5 on the penalty kill.

The Seawolves did, however, capitalize on a delayed penalty on BSU’s Danny Mattson to score their first goal late in the second period. UAA’s Gunderson left the ice for an extra attacker, and the Seawolves’ Blake Tatchell used the confusion to beat BSU goalie Mathieu Dugas at the 17:25 mark.

After the goal, Mattson went back to the box, and Sam Rendle soon joined him giving the Seawolves a 5-on-3 for nearly 40 seconds at the end of the second period. Dugas made multiple big saves in the final minute to keep the score 1-0.

“That rule change, if they score with sixth attacker, the penalty still stands,” Serratore said. “It’s a good rule. And we survived. Hopefully tomorrow we’ll get some power plays and convert. But it was a nice job by our penalty killers tonight, they stood tall.”

“Our penalty kill was good tonight,” Dugas added. “I didn’t face that many shots tonight, except that 5-on-3 at the end of the second. Our guys really played the puck well and made it hard for them to get in the game (when they were on the power play.”

The teams return to the ice at 7:07 p.m. today and BSU will be looking to carry some momentum forward.

“We all remember what happened last weekend, so it was very important to close this one out,” Dugas said. “Mentally, I think this was a win for us, now we need to come out (Saturday) and get a win.”

Alaska Anchorage  0  1  1  0  – 2

Bemidji State          0  0  2  0 – 2

First Period – No Scoring. Penalties – BSU, Sam Rendle (Interference), 15:53.

Second Period – 1, UAA, Blake Tatchell (Blake Lesak, Jordan Kwas), 17:25. Penalties – BSU, Cory Ward (Cross Checking), 5:00; BSU, Brady Wacker (Cross Checking), 13:12; BSU, Danny Mattson (Slashing), 17:25; BSU, Sam Rendle (Interference), 18:52.

Third Period – 2, BSU, Jeff Jubinville 1  (David Boehm, Jordan George), 2:14; 3, BSU, Jeff Jubinville 2 (Jordan George, Sam Rendle), 11:17; 4, UAA, Austin Coldwell (Kory Roy, Matt Bailey), 15:29. Penalties – UAA, Chris Crowell (Roughing), 12:08; BSU, Cory Ward (Roughing), 12:08.

Overtime – No Scoring. Penalties – None.

Goalies – UAA, Rob Gunderson (32-30); BSU, Mathieu Dugas (32-30).

Shots On Goal – UAA (5-14-9-4-32); BSU (7-13-11-1-32).

Penalties-Minutes – UAA, 1-2; BSU, 6-12.

Power Plays – UAA, 0-for-5; BSU 0-for-0 

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Jack Hittinger
Jack Hittinger is the sports editor of the Bemidji Pioneer. He is also the Bemidji State beat writer. He hails from the Great State of Michigan. Read his Bemidji State blog at http://thebeaverblog.areavoices.com/ and follow him on Twitter at @Jackhitts.
(218) 333-9772
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