Oxford, OH – Senior Nick Poehling had a big night with a goal and two assists and the Huskies matched their highest offensive output of the season in a 5-3 win and sweep of the Miami RedHawks at Goggin Ice Arena in Oxford, OH on Saturday, December 7th. A three goal outburst in the third period broke open a one goal SCSU lead as they improved their overall record to 4-6-4 and conference record to 2-4-0. It was scoring by committee as the Huskies had five different players hit the scoreboard in a hard-earned and well-deserved win.
A closely contested first period had the Huskies taking the early lead on a goal by Nick Poehling (Ahcan | Fitzgerald) at 10:50 of period one. Ahcan fed Poehling who was posted just inside the Miami blue line and his wrist shot beat Grant Valentine for a 1-0 SCSU advantage. However, the fortune was short-lived as the RedHawks responded a minute later with a goalmouth tap-in by Chase Pletzke with his fourth goal of the year at 11:52. SCSU’s David Hrenak made several key saves including a goalmouth save on Karch Bachman at 5:51. But, a Scott Corbett penalty for charging at 4:19 offered the Huskies a key opportunity late in the period. However, the power play unit spent most of the time with play on the perimeter as Miami killed the only man-advantage of the period. Hrenak was called on to make several more big saves including a two on one with 30 seconds remaining and another in a goalmouth scramble with four seconds to play. Final shots on goal for the period were 9-6 Miami.
The second period was full of opportunities by both teams with the difference being three penalties whistled on the RedHawks. The period started with a point blank shot at 1:27 by Ondrej Trebel saved by Valentine. Next, it was Hrenaks turn with a big save on John Sladic. Then, Jami Krannila who scored on a breakaway the previous night had another one on one with Valentine at 7:28 but this time Valentine was up to the task stopping a wrister from the bottom of the right circle. Hrenak then saved a re-direct by Bachman at 9:44 to preserve the 1-1 game. The RedHawks then got into penalty trouble with Rourke Russell whistled at 11:23 for holding and Phil Nies at 12:15 for goaltender interference. With a five on three advantage, the Huskies made them pay with a goal by Spencer Meier (Ahcan | N Poehling) at 13:11. Ahcan fed Meier who one-timed a hard shot past Valentine for a 2-1 SCSU lead. Miami was back in the penalty box at 18:45 with a boarding call on Monte Graham and the Huskies nearly took advantage with a big save on Easton Brodzinski with 50 seconds remaining in the period. SCSU had the shot advantage of 16-12 after two periods and a 2-1 lead.
An offensive explosion by the Huskies in period three sealed the win and sweep for SCSU. First, at 3:17, the Poehling brothers combined for a goal off a two on one. Nick Poehling added his third point of the game with an alert lateral pass from the right dot that found brother Jack breaking in on goal and he beat Valentine for a 3-1 game. Then, at 8:54, Nolan Walker was awarded a rare penalty shot after being tripped while charging in on Valentine. However, he shot wide on his opportunity to extend the SCSU lead. No to be deterred, the Huskies offense kept rolling with a goal by Kevin Fitzgerald at 10:02. Fitzgerald made a nifty stick move putting the puck between the legs of defenseman Derek Dahscke and then beat Valentine for a 4-1 lead. But, hand it to the RedHawks, despite what appeared to be an insurmountable lead, they battled back with a goal of their own at 14:05. Christian Mohs buried a wist shot from the left circle off a three on two to close the Husky lead to 4-2. The Huskies responded quickly with their fifth goal of the game less than a minute and a half later with a goal by Sam Hentges, his team leading seventh of the season. Hentges captured the puck off the back wall and leaned into a shot from a bad angle that got through Valentine for a 5-2 lead. But again, the RedHawks didn’t quit as Casey Gilling added his fifth goal of the season at 17:24. Gilling out-battled a SCSU defender for the puck in the crease area and slapped it past Hrenak for a 5-3 game. Miami pulled Valentine for an extra attacker with 2:33 remaining but despite pressure were unable to impact the two-goal lead in the 5-3 final. In a good show of offense, the Huskies outshot Miami 13-9 in period three.
SCSU outshot MIami 35-30 for the game with David Hrenak turning in another solid performance stopping 27 of 30 shots. Hrenak’s record improved to 4-6-4 with the win. Miami netminder Grant Valentine had a good showing as well turning aside 30 of 35 shots but saw his record drop to 0-2-1. The Huskies played a disciplined night of hockey with one penalty while Miami was whistled for five. SCSU was one for four on the power play while Miami failed in their only man-advantage.
“You saw it – it wasn’t a five goal against game for us but it was five goals against” said coach Chris Bergeron. “It was a night where we thought we had some jump and we were going at least the best we can. I thought the territorial game was fine. (We were ) on the wrong side of too many plays in the third period. The hockey is nowhere near good enough individually or collectively and when we come back (after break) we will continue to do what we’re doing and we’ll try to be the best version of ourselves and it starts with the individual.”
Nick Poehling (1-2-3), Kevin Fitzgerald (1-1-2) and Jack Ahcan (0-2-2) all had a multi-point game for the Huskies. Poehling also had five shots on goal and was plus three.
“It was great for our team to get this sweep as obviously we’ve been working to get better every weekend. This is a huge step in the right direction and hopefully we’ll return with a good weekend against Omaha.” said Nick Poehling.
Stars of the Game: #1 N Poehling (SCSU) #2 J Ahcan (SCSU) #3 D Hrenak (SCSU)