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Bemidji St. nips Buckeyes

BEMIDJI – The Bemidji State women’s hockey team had gone two months without scoring on the power play.

Mackenzie Thurston changed all of that Saturday afternoon.

The senior from Ottawa, Ontario, broke BSU’s two-month-long drought with just 2:39 to play.

That put BSU up 2-1 on Ohio State and the Beavers held on for the WCHA win at the Sanford Center.

The win was just the second at home for BSU season.

Thurston scored from the blue line with an assist from Abby Williams, ending an 0-for-37 stretch that dated back to Dec. 2 against Minnesota-Duluth.

After a scoreless first period, the Beavers (6-18-2, 5-16-1 WCHA) struck early in the second. Natasha Kostenko scored just 18 seconds into the middle period with assists from Thurston and Alex Citrowske.

Kostenko leads the team with nine goals and has at least a point in nine of BSU’s last 11 games.

But the Buckeyes (16-10-2, 11-8-2-2 WCHA) answered quickly when Julia McKinnon scored at 1:24.

From there the goaltenders came up big and stopped numerous chances until Thurston’s game-winner.

BSU’s Abby Ryplanski stopped 22 of 23 shots to pick up the win while OSU’s Chelsea Knapp made 20 saves on 22 shots.

The Beavers return to the ice next weekend for another series against North Dakota in Grand Forks Feb. 8-9.

Ohio State 0 1 0 – 1

Bemidji State 0 1 1 – 2

First Period – No Scoring.

Second Period – 1, BSU, Kostenko (Thurston), 0:18. 2, OSU, McKinnon (Moylan), 1:24.

Third Period – 3, BSU, Thurston (Williams), 17:19, PP.

Shots On Goal – OSU (8-4-11-23); BSU (5-8-9-22).

Goaltenders – OSU, Knapp (22-20); BSU, Ryplanski (24-22).

Penalties-Minutes – OSU, 4-8; BSU, 2-4.

Power Plays – OSU, 0-for-2; BSU, 1-for-4.

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 and follow him on Twitter at @Jackhitts.

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