By Ben Shanahan
Special to the Sentinel-Tribune
The Bowling Green State University hockey team’s offense found goals in bunches and, in different scenarios, goals on the powerplay, penalty kills, and at even strength during a 6-2 win over Lake Superior State University at Slater Family Ice Arena Friday.
“I liked the start. The power play was struggling, and to get the first one on the power play was big,” said BGSU coach Ty Eigner.
“You do not want the response Lake Superior State had scoring on the next shift, but it was nice that they were chasing us all night and not the other way around, so that was a positive for sure,” added Eigner.
BGSU, which has won three straight, improves to 11-16 overall, but more importantly gets over. 500 in the Central Collegiate Hockey Association at 9-8. Lake Superior State falls to 12-15-1 and 9-10.
The Falcons narrowly outshot the Lakers, 50-48, with each team getting 30 shots on goal. BGSU goaltender Christian Stoever had 27 saves in getting the win and sophomore Quinn Emerson led the Falcons’ offense with three points on two goals and an assist.
Both teams traded back-and-forth chances in the first eight and a half minutes with nothing but shots to show on the stat sheet. That was until Lake Superior State’s Sasha Teleguine was called for a hook in his offensive corner with 11:28 left in the first.
On the powerplay, BGSU sophomore Brett Pfoh scored his fourth goal of the season, getting a beautiful cross-crease pass, beating LSSU senior goaltender Ethan Langengger.
That lead did not last long, as 25 seconds later, the Lakers would snow Stoever, going for a puck, and as Stoever was blinded, LSSU senior Jared Westcott fired a shot into the back of the net, making it 1-1 with 9:53 left in the opening frame.
Both teams continued trading chances until the final minute of play in the opening period until Bowling Green freshman Gustav Stjernberg’s blueline blast hit Langenegger and found Scardina’s stick, who scored, making the game 2-1 heading into the first intermission.
“Obviously, in the game of hockey, you can’t play a perfect game, but we played a really good game from the drop of the puck to the end, and we have to do the same thing tomorrow,” said Scardina, talking about the rematch Saturday at Slater Arena (7:07 p.m.).
Lake Superior State started the period strong, tying the game up with 16:45 left in the middle frame as Stoever coughed up a rebound, and LSSU sophomore Connor Milburn buried the goal to make it 2-2.
Bowling Green took its third lead of the game when senior Seth Fyten’s behind-the-net pass found Emerson’s stick and he found the back bar, making it 3-2.
Lake Superior State got its first chance on the powerplay late in the second as Stjernberg was called for a boarding. Fortunately for the Falcons, the penalty kill unit completed their mission and killed off the penalty with 2:01 left, giving Bowling Green the lead heading into the final twenty minutes.
It did not take long in those final twenty minutes for BGSU to extend their lead. Just 2:20 into the third, Fyten and Emerson connected again, this time as Fyten’s blue line pass was tipped in by Emerson, giving the Falcons a 4-2 lead.
“I was trying to do my best to get in front of the eyes, and they did a really good job getting the puck through, and it worked out.” Said Emerson
LSSU got their second chance on the powerplay as Pfoh was called for a two-minute head contact minor penalty with 13:31 left in the second. Disaster struck for LSSU on the powerplay as BGSU defenseman Dalton Norris found his big-time slap shot in the back of the net, making it 5-2 with 12:35 remaining in the third.
BG got their second powerplay of the game with 9:14 left in regulation as Milburn was called for a hook in his defensive corner, but unlike the Falcons’ first attempt, the powerplay was unsuccessful.
Forty-five seconds later, Westcott found the back of the net for his second goal of the evening as Lake Superior State cut their deficit down to two goals with 6:29 remaining.
BG senior Josh Noddler brought that lead back to three with 2:55 left. He fired a center ice shot into the empty net, making it 6-3 and finishing the job for a big three points in the CCHA standings.