Tied for fourth in the NCHC, the Miami RedHawks had little margin for error entering this weekends series with SCSU. After losing 5-1 on Friday, they dipped to 5th in the NCHC standings and really had their back to the wall with one home series remaining on their league schedule. As a result, the RedHawks dug down and earned a hard-fought 3-2 win over the #3 ranked Huskies on Saturday at the Goggin Ice Center. For the Huskies, it was a missed opportunity to steal a close game on the road and put more pressure on North Dakota who was idle this weekend. The end result was the Huskies first league road loss of the season (6-1-1) and left them tied with UND for the conference lead as SCSU heads into an off weekend.
In a mirror image of Friday nights contest, the Huskies were outshot 11-5 in period one but entered the intermission with a one-goal lead thanks to a late period goal by first-year defenseman, Jimmy Schuldt. Schuldt ( Prow/Newell) scored his 7th goal of the season at 18:15 on a wrist shot after being slid a pass from Ethan Prow along the Miami blueline. His shot deflected past Miami goaltender Jay Williams to cap off another frustrating end to a period for the RedHawks.
But, in response, similar to Friday’s game, the RedHawks Josh Melnick tied the game at 1-1 at 5:54 of period two on a one-timer from the left slot as the teams were skating 4 X 4. They extended their lead at 7:16 on a power move by Sean Kuraly who skated in at Lindgren’s left and beat him short side for a 2-1 Miami lead. The Huskies were victimized once more before the end of the period on a one-timer by Kiefer Sherwood for his sixth goal of the year. Sherwood was fed a goalmouth pass by Jack Roslovic that he buried for a two-goal Miami lead. SCSU made things interesting scoring before the end of period two on a nice rush up ice by the Huskies on a 3 X 2. Kalle Kossila who was leading the rush dished the puck off to Mikey Eyssimont skating into the zone on his left who made a goalmouth pass to Patrick Russell who tipped it past Williams for a 3-2 game. SCSU was outshot 12-7 in period two.
Despite outshooting the RedHawks 12-7 in period three, the Huskies and RedHawks skated to a scoreless period and a hard-fought and much needed home win for Miami.
The Huskies were outshot 29-23 for the game with SCSU’s Lindgren stopping 26/29 Miami shots on goal. Lindgrens record drops to 22-6-1 with the loss. Miami’s Jay Williams picked up his 6th win of the season and turned aside 21/23 SCSU shots on goal. The Huskies potent power play was held scoreless again in three man-advantage opportunities and was held scoreless by college hockey’s top PK unit in 5 opportunities over the weekend. The Huskies power play has been shut down in three consecutive games and is 0-7 since the championship game of the North Star College Cup. A bright spot was the Huskies penalty kill which did not allow a power play in seven opportunities for Miami this weekend.
The Huskies earned nine of twelve regular season league points from the RedHawks winning three of four games.
The Huskies are idle next weekend and then return to action on February 19-20 on the road vs Omaha.
Stars of the Game: #1 Kuraly (Miami) #2 Sherwood (Miami) #3 Melnick (Miami)