MANKATO – Bemidji State couldn’t get much of anything going against Minnesota State Mankato Friday night.
The Mavericks dominated shots (40-20), power play opportunities (five to BSU’s one) and possession time. All that added up to a 3-0 MSU win in Western Collegiate Hockey Association action at Verizon Wireless Center in Mankato.
The Beavers (3-6-2, 2-5-3 WCHA) failed to score a goal for the second time this season, snapping a streak of nine games with at least one goal and gave MSU Mankato goaltender Stephon Williams his first shutout of the season. The Mavericks improve to 6-5-2 on the season and 4-5-0 in the league.
“They just took it to us,” BSU head coach Tom Serratore said. “That was a snowstorm tonight.
“We gave up too much possession time. We were tired, and that led to our breakdowns. They scored all those goals on extended shifts.”
Dylan Margonari got the Mavs on the board at the 4:22 mark.
Following a shot by Zach Palmquist, the Beavers were unable to clear the puck. BSU defensemen blocked four shots and goaltender Mathieu Dugas made a save, but Margonari collected the fourth rebound in the sequence and poked it past Dugas for his fourth goal of the season.
Dugas took the tough-luck loss for BSU, making 37 saves on the night.
The Mavericks outshot the Beavers 17-9 in the first period, 13-8 in the second and weren’t whistled for a penalty until the third period.
Still, BSU was a perfect 5-for-5 on the penalty kill despite being outshot greatly by the Mavericks.
MSU, however, made it 2-0 with just four minutes to go in the second period. The Beavers, who had just killed a penalty on James Hansen, were back at full strength but couldn’t clear the puck out of the zone.
MSU took advantage of BSU’s failed clearance.
Zach Lehrke kicked the puck to keep it in the zone, and it was collected on the boards by Matt Leitner.
Leitner found Eriah Hayes, who unleashed a backwards, through-the-legs pass to Lehrke in front of the net. Lehrke had no trouble backhanding it past Mathieu Dugas for the goal.
In the third period, MSU’s fourth line helped put the dagger in BSU.
The Beavers, desperate for a goal, iced the puck with five minutes to go in the game.
Unable to get a line change, BSU’s gassed fourth line was left out there against a fresh MSU fourth line.
Bryce Gervais scored at right off the faceoff. MSU’s Eli Zuck beat BSU’s Phil Brewer in the circle and Gervais beat Dugas at 15:45 to put it out of reach for the Beavers.
The Beavers had only one power play chance, in the third period, but couldn’t convert on it. MSU outshot BSU 10-3 in the final frame.
The teams return to the ice for the series finale at 7:07 p.m. today in Mankato.
Bemidji State 0 0 0 – 0
Minnesota State 1 1 1 – 3
First Period – 1, MSU, Dylan Margonari (Matt Leitner, Zach Lehrke), 4:22. Penalties – BSU, James Hansen (Hooking), 10:07; BSU, Radoslav Illo (Interference), 18:20.
Second Period – 2, MSU, Zach Lehrke (Eriah Hayes, Matt Leitner), 16:00. Penalties – BSU, James Hansen (Elbowing), 13:40; BSU, Jake Areshenko (Tripping), 16:43.
Third Period – 3, MSU, Bryce Gervais (Eli Zuck, Max Gaede), 15:45. Penalties – MSU, Max Gaede (Interference), 2:04; BSU, Radoslav Illo (Hooking), 10:30.
Shots On Goal – BSU (9-8-3-20); MSU (17-13-10-40).
Goaltenders – BSU; Mathieu Dugas (40-37); MSU, Stephon Williams (20-20).
Power Plays – BSU – 0-for-1; MSU 0-for-5.
Penalties-Minutes – BSU 5-10; MSU 1-2.