Falcon hockey beats No. 18 Minnesota State (11-8-13) PDF Print E-mail
Written by Sentinel Sports Staff   
Saturday, 09 November 2013 01:52
BG’s Connor Kucera defends against Minnesota State’s Dylan Margonari during the first period of their game Friday night. (AP Photo/Mankato Free Press, Pat Christman)
MANKATO, Minn. — No longer are special teams hurting Bowling Green’s hockey team.
Instead, they’re helping the Falcons win.
Dan DeSalvo and Adam Berkle scored short-handed goals during a three-goal second period Friday as the Falcons posted a 4-3 victory over 18th-ranked Minnesota State.   BOX SCORE
The Falcons improved to 5-2-2 overall and 3-0 in the Western Collegiate Hockey Association, their first 3-0 start in league play since the 1994-95 season.
MSU, the coaches pick to win the WCHA, is 3-4, 1-2.
The Falcons go for a sweep of the series tonight at 8:07.
“I hope the guys feel good about the win,” BG coach Chris Bergeron said. “From a coaching perspective, there are always things we can improve on. We found a way to win, and we should feel good about the way we played.
“The details weren’t bad, but the process wasn’t as good as we’ve been,” Bergeron added. “But on the road, we found a way to win and that means they were good enough.”
The Falcons went ahead for good at 3-2 on Berkle’s goal at 6:47 of the second period during a major penalty to Marcus Perrier for contact to the head.
BG didn’t allow MSU to score on the five-minute penalty. Perrier also received a game misconduct, meaning the Falcons played the final 36:43 with just five defensemen.
The Falcons increased their lead to 4-2 on Pierre-Luc Mercier’s goal at 9:48. MSU closed within a goal with 5:27 remaining in the game, but the Falcons held on.
BG was out-shot 8-3 in the third period.
“We have to learn to play with a lead ,and we have to learn to run away from teams,” Bergeron said. “We’ve done it a few times, but not on the road. But after they scored to make it 4-3, the last six minutes of the game were our best six minutes of the game.”
The Falcons had a chance to build a 5-2 lead in the third period, but failed to score on a power play near the six-minute mark.
“We took our foot off the gas,” Bergeron said. “We were way too loose with the puck. That’s a situation where if we score it’s 5-2 and the game’s over. Instead, we go through the motions and want it too easy.”
Despite a 0-of-5 effort on the power play, the Falcons won the special teams. BG’s two short-handed goals off-set MSU’s 1-of-6 effort with the extra man.
BG held MSU scoreless on its final five power-play attempts. The Mavericks’ power-play goal came off the rush and not a set play.
“Our penalty-kill was good for the most part,” Bergeron said.
The Falcons are 5-1-1 in their last seven games, winning the special teams five times and being even in the other two games.
“Special teams win games, and tonight they did again,” Bergeron said.
Brent Tate had the other goal for the Falcons, who remained without star forward Ryan Carpenter (broken finger) and Brett Mohler (foot). Mohler is one of BG’s top nine forwards.
DeSalvo had a point for the fifth straight game, totaling two goals and seven assists in that span. Tate has a point in five of his seven games.
Mercier’s goal, set up by Andrew Wallace and Kevin Dufour, was BG’s second in the last third games by its fourth line.
“Whether we have Ryan Carpenter or not, we want to make sure we’re not a team that doesn’t rely on one or two guys to do the scoring,” Bergeron said.
The Falcons were out-shot by a 33-25 margin, but goalie Tommy Burke was sharp with 30 saves.
“He played well and was on top of his game,” Bergeron said. “He looked comfortable, and looked like he was in control.”
Last Updated on Saturday, 09 November 2013 09:53

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