St. Cloud, MN – It’s a long trip from Fairbanks Alaska to St. Cloud. After a frustrating loss on Friday, you’d think the visiting Nanooks would have little fight left in them. Not to be. The squad from Alaska fought tooth and nail and pushed the host Huskies into overtime before losing by a 5-4 score at the Herb Brooks National Hockey Center on Saturday. In a wild one, the lead changed four times before the Huskies nailed down an overtime win on a Nick Poehling goal at 2:06 of overtime. To top things off, the goal was assisted by twin brother Jack Poehling for a fitting end to this non-conference weekend. And, younger brother Ryan, scored the game tying goal late in the third period to place them into the position to earn the OT game winner.
The game started out according to script with team captain Jimmy Schuldt (Jackson | Eyssimont) burying a power play goal at 5:07 of the first period. Robby Jackson fed Schuldt at the point and he did his thing powering a shot past Anton Martinsson for a 1-0 lead. This was Schuldt’s 4th goal of the early season. Yet, in a period dominated by the Huskies, they yielded a late period goal by Kylar Hope, his second in two games to tie the contest at 18:34. SCSU outshot the Nanooks 8-4 in period one.
The Huskies again carried play in the second period but found difficulty solving UAF’s Martinsson and found themselves down by a goal on another late period score by the Nanooks. Ross Heidt beat SCSU starter David Hrenak with a backhand shot from his knees at 18:06 for a 2-1 lead. SCSU edged Alaska 12-11 in shots on goal in the period.
The third period saw an explosion of offense with the lead changing hands twice by periods end. Robby Jackson (Schuldt | Lizotte) duplicated his Friday effort snapping a wrist shot off the iron to tie the game at 2-2 a mere 1:12 into the period. At 8:41 Jacob Benson (Kuster | Jaycox) gave the Huskies the lead sweeping a rebound off a shot by Clark Kuster for a 3-2 game. But, the never say die Nanooks rallied once more with a goal by Tristan Thompson on the power play at 10:58. Thompson took a wrist shot from the right circle that beat Hrenak high to tie the game at 3-3. Then, at 16:56, Ross Heidt scored his second gal of the game off a turnover in the Huskies zone. Heidt buried a rebound after Hrenak made the initial save to give Alaska a 4-3 lead with just 3:04 remaining in regulation. But, the Huskies responded at 18:11 on a goal by Ryan Poehling. Mikey Eyssimont made a cross ice pass from the right circle to Poehling who one-timed a low shot past Martinsson for the key tying goal with less than two minutes remaining in the game. SCSU outshot Alaska 12-10 in the period as the game headed to overtime.
The game ended quickly in overtime as Jack Poehling found twin brother Nick charging the net on a 2 x 1 and Poehling made no mistake on the shot beating Martinsson stick side for the game winning goal.
SCSU outshot Alaska 34-26 for the game and was 1/5 on the power play while the Nanooks were 1/4. First-year goaltender David Hrenak registered his first win as a Husky stopping 22 of 26 shots on goal. Alaska’s Anton Martinsson was kept busy in goal stopping 29 of 34 shots on goal.
Mikey Eyssimont (0-2-2), Robby Jackson (1-1-2) and Jimmy Schuldt (1-1-2) all had multiple points in the game for SCSU.
Stars of the Game: #1 Nick Poehling (SCSU) #2 Jimmy Schuldt (SCSU) #3 Ross Heidt (Alaska)