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WOMEN’S HOCKEY: Beavers endure 3-1 loss at MSU

MANKATO -- The Bemidji State women’s hockey team was unable to get off on the right foot in the first game of its Western Collegiate Hockey Association series with Minnesota State on Friday afternoon, falling 3-1 at the Verizon Center in Mankato.

Freshman Clair DeGeorge scored the lone goal for the Beavers (12-14-3, 7-10-2-1 WCHA), while redshirt freshman Lauren Bench made a career-high 38 saves.

The Mavericks (4-22-1, 2-17-0-0 WCHA) snapped a nine-game losing streak overall and a 14-game losing streak in league play with the win, just their second of the season against a WCHA opponent. Minnesota State netminder Chloe Crosby stopped 23 shots in the victory.

MSU came out firing on all cylinders, outshooting BSU 16-7 in a scoreless first period. The Mavs would go on to record a season-high 41 shots on goal to 24 for the Beavers.

Only 46 seconds into the second period, Megan Hinze scored a power-play goal to put Minnesota State on the board.

DeGeorge equalized just 10 seconds later to level the score at 1-1 with her goal off assists from Paige Beebe and Tina Kampa.

The Mavericks did not let the score stay even heading into the second intermission. Anna Keys netted a power-play goal with 1:03 left in the frame to hand MSU the lead entering the third period.

The Beavers put up nine shots on goal in the final frame, but were unable to find the tying goal. Jordan McLaughlin buried an empty-net goal with 55 seconds remaining to finalize the score at 3-1.

Bemidji State went 0-for-2 on the power play, while Minnesota State finished 2-for-4.

The Beavers will attempt to gain ground on Minnesota Duluth in the league standings when they return to the Verizon Center for today’s 2:07 p.m. series finale with the Mavericks. BSU trails idle UMD by four points in the race for the fourth seed and home ice in the first round of the WCHA Playoffs.

Minnesota State 3, Bemidji State 1

BSU 0 1 0 -- 1

MSU 0 2 1 -- 3

First period -- No scoring.

Second period -- 1, MSU, Hinze (Keys, Boyd), 0:46, PP; 2, BSU, DeGeorge (Beebe, Kampa), 0:56; 3, MSU, Keys (Boyd, Fleming), 18:57, PP.

Third period -- 4, MSU, McLaughlin (Keys), 19:05, EN.

Goaltending (Shots-Saves) -- BSU, Bench (41-38); MSU, Crosby (24-23).