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Women's hockey: UND completes sweep of Bemidji St.

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BEMIDJI — A poor power play wasn’t going to cut it for Bemidji State against ranked North Dakota.

No. 4 UND killed five power play opportunities and completed a Western Collegiate Hockey Association series sweep over BSU with a 5-1 win Saturday at the Sanford Center.

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North Dakota struck first when Gracen Hirschy scored her third goal of the season to take an early lead after less than two minutes of play. The goal went under review but proved to be a good one. Becca Kohler and Andrea Dalen were credited with assists.

The remainder of the first period produced seven penalties, including a 5-on-3 advantage for UND that BSU goaltender Jessica Havel and the defense killed.

“It is usually physical playing North Dakota,” Bemidji State head coach Steve Sertich said of the physical play and number of penalties. “I thought we hung in there and went toe to toe with them. Sometimes, you have to do that.”

Despite having three power play opportunities, the Beavers were unable to find the back of the net in the first period.

“It was awful,” Sertich said of his team’s power play execution early on. “I was actually ready to decline the power play and just tell them we would stay five on five. Nonetheless, it got a lot better as the game went on.”

The teams finished the first period with eight shots each.

“We had a pretty good first period,” Sertich said. “Unfortunately, they converted and we did not. I liked our battle level in comparison to yesterday.”

In the second period, deflections haunted Havel and the Beavers.

First, at the 8:35 mark, Amy Menke’s shot was deflected by a Beavers defender and went over the shoulder of Havel to increase the lead to 2-0.

“Give credit to the team that scored,” Sertich said. “You can call it bad luck or whatever, but they do a great job at keeping pressure on us and creating those opportunities.”

Three minutes later, Sam LaShomb’s shot from outside was redirected by Tori Williams and into the net.

Menke added a second goal on a wrist shot that went over Havel’s stick side shoulder and into the net to increase the lead to 4-0.

Menke, a freshman from Shakopee, Minn., scored the first two career goals of her collegiate career in the win.

The Beavers answered with a goal from Rachael Kelly, her first of the season, to cut the deficit to three goals at 4-1. Both Stephanie Anderson and Lauren Miller picked up their first assists of the season on the goal.

North Dakota out-shot Bemidji State 17-8 in the period and took a 4-1 lead to the locker room for the second intermission.

Kayla Berg added a fifth goal for UND as she flipped the puck over Britini Mowat’s shoulder and into the net in the third period. Mowat relieved Havel and allowed the one goal, while making 11 saves, in the third period.

Havel made 21 saves in two periods of action in her first save of the season.

“She was good,” Sertich said of his senior goaltender. “She got pretty tired though. She was sore and she was pretty honest with me that she was done after that second period. I hope we did not push her too much this weekend, but I wanted to get her in the game.”

Lexie Shaw made 22 save for North Dakota.

Bemidji State (3-6-1; 0-4-0 WCHA) will return to action next weekend when it travels to Columbus, Ohio, to take on another nationally-ranked opponent, Ohio State.

North Dakota 5, Bemidji State 1

North Dakota 1 3 1 – 5

Bemidji State 0 1 0 – 1

First Period – 1, UND, Hirschy (Kohler, Dalen) 1:57. Penalties – UND, Hanson (Holding the stick) 2:21; UND, Salo (Checking) 6:12; BSU, Kelly (Hooking) 11:57; BSU, Moher (Tripping) 12:54; UND, Hirschy (Roughing) 19:04; UND, LaShomb (Roughing) 19:04; BSU, Ehlert (Roughing) 19:04.

Second Period – 2, UND, Menke (Krzyzaniak) 8:35; 3, UND, Williams (LaShomb, Hirschy) 11:43; 4, UND, Menke (Eisenschmid) 15:00; 5, BSU, Kelly (Anderson, Miller) 16:54. Penalties – BSU, Chapman (Slashing) 1:28; UND, Lashomb (Checking) 16:35.

Third Period – 3, UND, Berg (Unassisted) 11:22. Penalties – UND, Hirschy (Elbowing) 6:19; BSU, Kelly (Trippiing) 6:30; UND, Dufault (Slashing) 16:44; BSU, Miller (Roughing) 19:35; BSU, Anderson (Roughing) 19:35; UND, Hanson (Roughing) 19:35; UND, Berg (Roughing) 19:35.

Shots on goal: UND – 8-17-12-37; BSU – 8-8-7-23; Goaltenders (shots-saves): UND – Shaw (23-22); BSU – Havel (25-21), Mowat (12-11.) Penalties-Minutes: UND – 9-18; BSU – 7-14. Power play goals, opportunities: UND 0-for-4; BSU – 1-for-6. Three stars: 1-Menke, UND; 2-Hirschy, UND; 3-Kelly, BSU.

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