BOWLING GREEN, Ohio -- The Bemidji State men’s hockey team applied late pressure, but came up short in a 3-2 loss at No. 6/7 Bowling Green on Thursday night.
The Falcons extended their win streak to nine and improved to 12-1-0 on the season and 3-0-0 in Western Collegiate Hockey Association play. Playing their first league contest of the season, the Beavers dropped to 2-4-2 overall.
BSU struck first with under seven minutes remaining in the opening period. Alex Ierullo connected with Owen Sillinger on a 2-on-1 rush for a 1-0 lead.
Bowling Green needed only 60 seconds to level the score. Taylor Schneider redirected Brandon Kruse’s shot from the slot for the equalizer.
Connor Ford scored the go-ahead goal four minutes into the second period when he collected Gavin Gould’s pass into the slot and deposited it into the cage.
Later in the period, Max Johnson tipped in a goal to extend the lead to 3-1 with seven minutes to go.
Brendan Harris scored on the power play to cut the deficit back to one with 2:08 remaining in the second thanks to his one-timer from the right circle. The power-play goal was the Beavers’ second of the season and their first since Dec. 18. The tally brought Harris up to five goals and seven points on the year, the most on the team in both categories.
Goaltender Zach Driscoll was pulled for an extra attacker in the final minute of the third period, but the Beavers couldn’t net a tying goal despite outshooting BGSU 10-9 for the period. The Falcons edged BSU 36-33 in shots on goal for the game.
Bemidji State finished 1-for-2 on the power play to move to 2-for-26 on the season. The penalty kill held Bowling Green scoreless on its two power-play opportunities as the unit improved to 24-for-26 on the year.
Driscoll stopped 33 of 36 shots, while Eric Dop saved 31 of 33 in the opposing net for the win.
An announced crowd of 300 was in attendance at the game, marking the first time this season BSU has played with fans in the building.
The Beavers will aim to split the WCHA series in the finale at 6:07 p.m. Friday.
No. 6/7 Bowling Green 3, Bemidji State 2
BSU 1 1 0 -- 2
BGSU 1 2 0 -- 3
First period -- 1, BSU, O. Sillinger (Ierullo), 13:14; 2, BGSU, Schneider (Lloyd), 14:14.
Second period -- 3, BGSU, Ford (Gould, Musser), 4:17; 4, BGSU, Johnson (Kruse), 12:56; 5, BSU, Harris (Armour, Vold), 17:52, PP.
Third period -- No scoring.
Goalies (saves-shots) -- BSU, Driscoll (33-36); BGSU, Dop (31-33).