BEMIDJI – After losing to Michigan Tech 5-4 in overtime Friday night, the Bemidji State men’s hockey team was fortunate to force an extra period Saturday night.
After a dominating offensive performance from Michigan Tech for much of the game, Jordan George scored the game-tying goal with five minutes to go in regulation to help the Beavers force overtime.
However, the end result was still the same for the Beavers. Michigan Tech’s Blake Pietila scored the game-winning goal with 30 seconds to go, leading the Huskies to a 2-1 WCHA win in front of 3,070 at the Sanford Center.
The Beavers, who fall to 2-5-1 overall and 1-4-1 in the WCHA, were swept in back-to-back series for the first time since February of last season.
Tech’s win spoiled a career night by Bemidji State goaltender Mathieu Dugas. Getting his first start of the season for the Beavers, Dugas made a career-high 40 saves in the loss.
George’s goal, with just over five minutes to go, helped the Beavers salvage what had been a poor game offensively. Michigan Tech (4-6, 3-6 WCHA) had outshot Bemidji State 27-12 through two periods, but the Beavers appeared to get back on track in the third, getting the 16-8 edge on shots and being more patient with scoring opportunities.
BSU finally got on the board with George’s tally, with an assist from David Boehm.
The Beavers dumped a puck in a few minutes later and Radoslav Illo was right there with a chance to poke it in on the right side, but Michigan Tech captain Carl Neilson somehow fished the puck out of the crease to save the day for Tech.
In overtime, Tech outshot BSU 7-0 but the Beavers had a few chances. With a minute to play, George had a great shot at a breakaway following a faceoff, but was knocked off the puck to the dismay of the Bemidji State student section and the BSU bench, who wanted a penalty.
No call was made, and the Huskies got it back and scored seconds later. BSU head coach Tom Serratore came out on the ice following the final horn to ask the officials if they saw what he saw, but neither did and the goal stood.
Dugas had some close calls in the first two periods, but the senior from L’Assomption, Quebec, made was able to stonewall the Huskies for most of the game.
Tech scored their first goal of the game in the second period, a tough-luck goal for Dugas.
With just over five minutes to play in the second frame, BSU had a chance to get something going on the power play when Tech’s Riley Sweeny went to the box for holding.
But BSU’s power play lasted all of 30 seconds. Refs called George for interference and the teams had to skate 4-on-4.
The Huskies used the open ice to their advantage, and quickly. Just 15 seconds after George’s penalty Steven Segio got the feed from David Johnstone and beat Dugas glove-side to put Tech up 1-0 with five minutes to go.
It was a goal the Huskies got back after thinking they had scored a few minutes earlier.
At the 9:28 mark of the middle frame, BSU’s Graeme McCormack was sent to the box for hooking and officials brought the faceoff to Dugas’ left side. The Huskies won the draw and dumped it in the general vicinity of the Beavers goal. Tech’s Alex Petan raced in to tap the puck behind Dugas for the score.
The only problem? Petan trucked Dugas in the process, blindsiding him as he came in to score.
After a brief video review, the goal was overturned and McCormack happily went back to the box.
Later in the second, Brady Wacker hit a post with a shot from the blue line with two minutes left, but Tech went into the second intermission up 1-0.
The Huskies outshot the Beavers 12-8 in the second period after dominating the first period 15-4.
Tech goalie Kevin Genoe got his second straight win over BSU, making 27 saves for the Huskies.
The Beavers return to the ice next weekend for WCHA another home series against Alaska Anchorage.
Michigan Tech 0 1 0 1 – 2
Bemidji State 0 0 1 0 – 1
First Period – No Scoring. Penalties – BSU, David Boehm (Interference), 14:43; BSU, Radoslav Illo (High Sticking), 17:50.
Second Period – 1, MTU, Steven Seigo (David Johnstone, Tanner Kero), 15:19. Penalties – MTU, Dennix Rix (Interference), 2:22; BSU, Graeme McCormack (Hooking), 9:28; MTU, Riley Sweeney (Holding), 14:38; BSU, Jordan George (Interference), 15:05.
Third Period – 2, BSU, Jordan George (David Boehm, Jake Areshenko), 14:51. Penalties – MTU, Jimmy Davis (Holding), 7:03; BSU, Danny Mattson (Tripping), 10:34.
Overtime – Blake Pietila (Jujhar Kharia, Alex Petan), 4:30. Penalties – None.
Goalies – MTU, Kevin Genoe (28-27). BSU, Mathieu Dugas (42-40).
Shots on Goal – MTU (15-12-8742). BSU (4-8-16-028).
Penalties-Minutes – MTU, 3-6. BSU, 5-10.
Power Plays – MTU, 0-for-5. BSU, 0-for-3.