DULUTH – Thanks to Jordan George’s game-winning goal in the second period, Bemidji State’s three-game losing streak finally came to an end. It also extended an undesirable streak by Minnesota Duluth.
Through the first two months, the Bulldogs have been winless on the second night of eight series, which have been played on Friday, Saturday or Sunday.
That predictable pattern continued Saturday night as BSU shut down UMD 2-1 in a Western Collegiate Hockey Association men’s game before 6,490 fans at Amsoil Arena.
Second-period goals from freshman Markus Gerbrandt and senior George (the 54th of his career) gave the Beavers enough to break a three-game losing streak and earn their first win at Amsoil Arena in four tries.
Sophomore goalie Adam Walsh was making his first start in three weeks and was solid for Bemidji State (4-8-2 overall, 3-7-2 WCHA).
UMD (5-8-3, 3-6-3) had been 2-0-1 the past three games while scoring a combined 15 goals. But the Bulldogs, who won 4-2 Friday, couldn’t find their offense and are now 0-6-2 on the second night this season. They’re 5-2-1 on the first night.
UMD had plenty of jump in the first period, leading in shots 13-9, but neither team scored. Bemidji State had the only power play of the first 20 minutes.
The trend was reversed in the second period, with each team getting eight shots on goal. Gerbrandt came from behind the UMD net and wrapped the puck between the legs of goalie Aaron Crandall at 6:54.
Then the Beavers converted on their third power play of the game as George scored cleanly on a drive from the right circle.
Through two periods Bemidji State had not taken a penalty and UMD was called for three. The Bulldogs killed off a five-minute major penalty to start the third period and ultimately had one power play.
UMD pulled Crandall for the final 2:53, went on a power play with 1:41 to go and scored with a two-man advantage with 51 seconds remaining, from Caleb Herbert. UMD then hit a pipe in the waning seconds.
Walsh, who started the first seven games of the season was back in Bemidji State’s goal for the first time since a 5-4 home loss to Michigan Tech on Nov. 16. He made 33 saves and UMD led in shots on goal 34-19.
Bemidji State 2, Minnesota Duluth 1
Bemidji State 0 2 0 – 2
Minnesota Duluth 0 0 1 – 1
First period — No scoring. Penalties — Tony Cameranesi, UMD (roughing), 17:14.
Second period — 1. Bemidji State, Markus Gerbrandt 3 (Brad Robbins, Matt Prapavessis), 6:54; 2. Bemidji State, Jordan George 5 (Ben Kinne, Prapavessis), 16:29 (pp). Penalties — Drew Olson, UMD (elbowing), 11:23; Justin Crandall, UMD (tripping), 15:34.
Third period — 3. UMD, Caleb Herbert 3 (Austin Farley, Andy Welinski), 19:08 (pp). Penalties — Derik Johnson, UMD (5-minute checking from behind major, game misconduct), :49; Cory Ward, Bemidji State (interference), 5:28; Austin Farley, UMD (too many men on ice), 11:05; Brady Wacker, Bemidji State (elbowing), 18:19.
Shots on goal — Bemidji State 9-8-2—19, UMD 13-8-13—34. Goalies — Andrew Walsh (3-4-1), Bemidji State (34 shots-33 saves); Aaron Crandall (2-4-2), UMD (19 shots-17 saves). Power plays — Bemidji State 1-of-5, UMD 0-of-1. Referees — Justin Brown, Matt Ulwelling. Linesmen — Dan Dineen, Jeff Schultz. A — 6,490.