Sweep of Ranked BGSU Gives Wildcats Second-Place in WCHA

Sweep of Ranked BGSU Gives Wildcats Second-Place in WCHA

MARQUETTE, Mich.—Northern Michigan University (13-10-3, 11-5-2-2 WCHA) secured a series sweep over No. 14 Bowling Green State University (12-8-6, 9-4-5-2 WCHA) with a 3-2 overtime victory Saturday evening in the Berry Events Center. The win moved the Wildcats ahead of the Falcons to second place in the Western Collegiate Hockey Association standings.

Saturday night, it was the Falcons starting well in the power play, connecting on their first advantage of the evening. BGSU took a 1-0 lead at the 7:47 mark that lasted the rest of the first period. The Wildcats would tally six shots on-goal in the opening period, while the also killed a penalty later in the period.

BGSU was whistled for a penalty one minute into the second period, allowing junior forward Troy Loggins (Huntington Beach, California) to score his third power play goal of the weekend. His 11th goal of the season knotted the contest at one, while junior defenseman Ryan Black (Stillwater, Minnesota) and freshman forward Mitchel Slattery (Lino Lakes, Minnesota) earned their ninth and fourth assists.

Senior defenseman Jordan Klimek (Langley, British Columbia) fired a shot into the net from near the blue line with under a minute to play in the period to give NMU their first lead of the game. His third goal of the season was also assisted by black for his 10th assist of the season. Klimek's score was the sixth shot of the period for the Wildcats, who outshot the Falcons, 6-5, in the period.

NMU again outshot the Falcons in the third period, 10-7, but BGSU managed to tie the game with less than two minutes to play in regulation. The score came at 18:31 of the third period, sending the Wildcats to their fifth overtime of the season.

Much of the overtime period went by with each team recording just one shot on-goal. With the clock winding down, sophomore defenseman Philip Beaulieu (Duluth, Minnesota) sent one into the back of the net from the right-side face-off circle give NMU the win and sweep over a ranked opponent.

The goal was scored with 6.9 seconds on the clock in the sudden-death OT period for Beaulieu's sixth goal of the season. Junior forward Adam Rockwood (Coquitlam, British Columbia) picked up his fourth assist of the series and 21st of the season on the play. His 21 assists are tied for the third most in the NCAA this season. Senior forward Zach Diamantoni (Montgomery, New Jersey) also earned an assist, his 10th of the season.

Moving to 11-5-1 on the season, junior goaltender Atte Tolvanen (Vihti, Finland) earned his fifth win in the past eight contests. During the eight-game span, Tolvanen has a 5-1-1 mark, while he is one win from tying a career-high for a season. With the victory, Tolvanen's save percentage remains at .907, while his goals against average improved to 2.58.

The victory moved the Wildcats to 2-0-3 this season overtime contests. NMU has gone on to win all three of the ties with exhibition overtime victory, twice in a shootout and one in a 3-on-3 period.

Next weekend, the Wildcats will continue their four-game homestand when the welcome Lake Superior State University to the Berry Events Center. The series will take place Friday and Saturday, with both contests scheduled for a 7 p.m. puck drop.