Friday, December 5, 2014

Nanooks 5, Mavericks 4 (OT)

Freddy's three thoughts of the game ...

1. Streak comes to an end: So there was a moment on Friday evening when Lake Superior State had leads of 3-0 and 4-1 over North Dakota, and it was easy to think about the curse of No. 1 and what it might mean next week if indeed UND lost and Minnesota State moved up to the top spot. Never mind. Not only did North Dakota come back and win that game 7-4 but MSU lost, too, falling 5-4 to Alaska in overtime and seeing their six-game winning streak come to an end. It was a wild and wacky game, especially in the third period and overtime, with the teams trading five goals and having an Alaska goal awarded via review 29 seconds after it happened. MSU freshman Brad McClure scored a falling-down game-tying goal with 3:20 left in regulation. But it was another rookie, Austin Vieth, who potted the winner at 2:59 of OT.

2. Pressure's on: Alaska did a good job sustaining pressure in the MSU end, winning races to rebounds and loose pucks and forcing turnovers. The Mavericks ended up stuck on some long defensive shifts, including on the game-winning goal. The Nanooks just seemed to have that slight edge on Friday that allowed them to upset the Mavericks. "We're a hard-working team," said Vieth, who also scored the reviewed goal, initially ruled to have gone off the crossbar. "We have a bunch of guys who work hard. We don't have all the skill in the world, but when we work hard it shows up."

3. Jones outduels Williams: Alaska goaltender Davis Jones stopped 38 of 42 shots, including 16 of 17 in the first period to get the win, his fifth of the year. Meanwhile, the Mavericks' Stephon Williams lost for the first time since Nov. 1, stopping 21 of 26 shots. Not his best night. He allowed five goals a week after scoring back-to-back shutouts on the road and two weeks after being a rock on the back end against then-No. 1 Michigan Tech. On Friday, he certainly could have used a little more help clearing rebounds and clearing the zone from time to time. But he did the goal support that's usually good enough to win games.

Read more in my game story here.

Around the WCHA: Bowling Green 5, Northern Michigan 5 (OT) ... North Dakota 7, Lake Superior State 4 ... Bemidji State 3, Alaska Anchorage 3 (OT)

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