Strong Second Period Gives NMU 4-2 Victory over LSSU

Strong Second Period Gives NMU 4-2 Victory over LSSU

BEMIDJI, Minn. – Northern Michigan University Men's Hockey scored three goals in the second period on their way to a 4-2 victory over Lake Superior State University Friday night in Western Collegiate Hockey Association play. The victory also moved the team into a three-way tie for second place.


The two teams were nearly even in the first period with NMU holding a slight 8-7 advantage on shots. The Wildcats struck first, scoring on their first power play  14:55 into the game but the 1-0 lead didn't last long. Just over two mintues later, the Lakers answered with a goal at 17:07 to send the game into a tie after the first period.


Junior Philip Beaulieu (Duluth, Minn.) put the Wildcats on the board when he scored a power play goal for his sixth goal of the season. The goal was assisted by senior Troy Loggins (Huntington Beach, Calif.), for his 13th assist this year, and senior Adam Rockwood (Coquitlam, B.C.) on his 17th assist.


Northern Michigan controlled the second period  as they outshot the Lakers 17-7 and put three goals in the net while Lake State only managed one to give NMU a lead after 40 minutes. 5:25 into the period, the Wildcats put one in, then followed it with another goal at 8:34 when NMU was able to score on the penalty kill for a short handed goal. With the game 3-1, the Lakers answered at 9:32, but the Wildcats scored with just 17 seconds left in the period to take a 4-2 lead.


Rockwood scored his sixth goal of the season and the first of the quarter for NMU. Senior Denver Pierce (Sault Ste. Marie, Mich.) picked up his seventh assist, with Loggins getting his second assist of the night and 14th of the season.


The Wildcats scored their fifth short handed goal of the year when sophomore Joseph Nardi (Edmonton, Alta.) raced in for goal on the NMU penalty kill. Freshman Griffin Loughran (West Seneca, N.Y.) contributed his eighth assist this year. Senior Tony Bretzman (Mendota Heights, Minn.) notched his sixth assist as well.


With just 17 seconds to go in the period, freshman Ty Readman (Edmonton, Alta.) found the net for the fourth time this year, while Loughran tallied his ninth of the season and second of the game and Nardi picked up his ninth.


The Wildcat defense finished off the game by not allowing LSSU goal as NMU captured the 4-2 victory.


Senior goaltender Atte Tolvanen (Vihti, Finland) made his 130th appearance and finished with 22 saves and now has 3,319 saves in his career to stay in fourth place in the NMU record book. He is now just 43 saves shy of reaching third place.

Tolvanen will continue to make his climb up the record book for the remainder of the season as he looks to break the career number of shutouts (13), career goaltender games played (133), career goal against average (2.24), and save percentage marks (.924).


Northern Michigan is now 16-14-2 on the season and is 15-8-2 in the WCHA with Lake Superior State falling to 15-13-5 overall and 13-9-3-2 in the league. The teams are now tied with Bowling Green State University for second place in the WCHA. NMU and LSSU return Saturday night for the series finale with the winner taking the Cappo Cup. NMU currently leads the season series 2-1 with an 8-7 goal advantage.