Friday, October 8, 2010

Minnesota State 5, St. Lawrence 5 - OT

Corey Leivermann celebrates after scoring his first college goal Friday night. (Pat Christman photo)
PucKato's Three Thoughts of the Game:

1. Comeback kids?
One game might be too early to make any sweeping statements about a team, but after trailing 4-2 after two periods, the Mavericks came out and dominated the third, scoring two goals in the first 1:38 (Justin Jokinen had a hand in both, scoring the first at 38 second and assisting on Eli Zuck's tying goal a minute later) and taking the lead on Mike Louwerse's goal at the 10:38 mark. The Mavericks outshot the Saints 24-10 in the third period and overtime. 

While Sean Flanagan's goal with 3:54 remaining in regulation forced the tie (it was Flanagan's second goal  and fourth point of the night), the Mavericks showed something they just never did last season. Last year, they were 1-12-0 in games where they trailed after two periods. The lone win was in Game 1 of the WCHA playoffs at St. Cloud State. 

2. It was the best of times, it was the worst of times
That was Corey Leivermann's night in a nutshell. The Mankato native couldn't have had a better start to his career at MSU, batting a loose puck out of the air to score the Mavericks' first goal midway through the first period. But at the end of the second period, he was called for checking from behind, getting a five-minute major and a game misconduct. With Leivermann out of the game, the Saints quickly scored on the major to take their 4-2 lead. 

"It was a rollercoaster ride," Leivermann said. "I went from Cloud 9 to 'What just happened?'"

Said Mavericks coach Troy Jutting: "I thought Corey played a good game while he was in there, but obviously, you've got to be careful (on the checking from behind play). ... But I thought it was a good start for him."

3. What scoring problem?
Offense is the big question mark for the Mavericks this season, but they didn't necessarily show that on Friday. They put 49 shots on net and got goals from five different players: Leivermann, Jokinen, Louwerse, Zuck and Michael Dorr. Jokinen and Dorr also had assists, and Kurt Davis had a two-assist game. Joe Schiler, Andrew Sackrison, Zach Lehrke, Cameron Cooper and Phil Cook also had assists. Lots of guys with points.

Dorr was kicking himself after the game, thinking he could have had four goals. He put two shots off the crossbar and, in overtime, had a prime scoring opportunity barely turned away by the paddle of goalie Robby Moss' goal stick. Had Dorr lifted the puck off the ice, he would have won the game. Dorr was credited with seven shots on goal.

On the flip side, the Mavericks have to shore up their penalty kill, as St. Lawrence was 3 for 6 and had 14 of its 31 shots during the man advantage.

Notes: Mavericks sophomore defenseman Evan Mosey suffered upper-body injury in the first period and did not return to the game. ... St. Lawrence's Sean Flanagan finished the game with two goals and two assists. ...  Read The Free Press game story.

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