Minnesota State scored first but couldn't build on its lead as it settled with a season split against 18th-ranked RPI in Troy, N.Y.
Johnny McInnis, playing for the injured Max Gaede scored the Mavericks' lone goal at the 12:00 mark of the first period. The Engineers outshot the Mavericks 38-32. Phil Cook stopped 34 shots in the loss.
After losing Gaede and Tyler Elbrecht on Friday (during the radio pregame show, coach Troy Jutting said Elbrecht could be out for "a couple months"), MSU lost two more forwards on Saturday. J.P. Burkemper went out with an injury in the first period, and Eriah Hayes was called for a contact-to-the-head penalty in the second period, getting a major and a game misconduct.
"We played with a short bench both nights," Mavericks coach Troy Jutting said. "And in the first games of the year, when you're not in great game shape yet, that's tough.
"But I really liked our compete level all weekend long."
RPI scored late in the major and added another power play goal in the third. Last-minute goals in the first and second periods also did the Mavericks in. Also, MSU committed nine more penalties and failed to cash in on a full, 2-minute 5x3 power play.
For the weekend, MSU and RPI combined for 83 penalty minutes.
"It was really intense," Jutting said. "We'll definitely be a better hockey team because of it."
So the Mavericks fall to 1-1 and will return to Mankato to take on UMass-Lowell on Friday and Saturday at the Verizon Wireless Center.