HOUGHTON, Mich. – Ninth-ranked Minnesota State handed top-ranked Michigan Tech its first loss of the season, 2-1, on Friday (Nov. 21) at the John MacInnes Student Ice Arena. With the Huskies up by a goal in the third, the Mavericks scored two goals in a span of 24 seconds to take the lead.
Tech falls to 10-1-0 overall and 8-1-0 in the WCHA. MSU improves to 8-3-0 overall and 6-1-0 in league play.
“It was a good hockey game,” Tech coach Mel Pearson said. “It was two good teams going at it hard. Both goaltenders were outstanding.
“Credit them. They’re a good hockey team. There’s a reason they were picked to win this league.”
After a scoreless first period, Alex Petan gave the Huskies a 1-0 lead 65 seconds into the second, scoring for the fourth game in a row. Tanner Kero picked up the puck on the sidewall and carried it out front of MSU goaltender Stephon Williams. The initial shot by Kero was saved, but Petan was at the doorstep to flip it in for his sixth of the season.
Husky goaltender Jamie Phillips saw a ton of action in the second period, making 14 saves. Midway through the frame, he made a save on an odd man rush and then gloved down the rebound. He also had a goal-saving poke check as he was sprawled out on the ice two minutes later.
Kero had a chance to add to the lead on the penalty kill as he stole the puck from a MSU defenseman and went in alone on Williams. Kero made a move to his backhand but Williams was there to make the save.
The Huskies had a 3-on-1 break nine minutes into the third but couldn’t come up with a quality scoring chance.
Phillips had another big save in the third, this time on an MSU breakaway.
The Mavericks finally broke through 11:58 into the final frame. CJ Franklin dug the puck out of the corner, and Teddy Blueger found Brett Stern wide open in front of the net to knot it at one.
Only 24 seconds later, Dylan Margonari gave MSU the lead with a goal from Zach Stepan and Carter Foguth. The play was reviewed by the officials but stood.
Tech applied a ton of pressure late in the third, pulling Phillips with just over a minute remaining. Williams stopped 15 shots for the visitors in the third to hand Michigan Tech its first loss of the season.
Phillips finished with 32 saves, stopping eight in the first, 14 in the second, and 10 in the third.
“We’re relying way too much on Jamie Phillips,” Pearson said. “He was just outstanding tonight. He made some incredible saves to give us a chance.”
MSU’s Williams had 30 saves with six in the first and nine in the second.
Tech was 0-for-3 on the power play while MSU was 0-for-2.
The two teams wrap up the WCHA series at 7:07 p.m. Saturday.
(Information Courtesy of MTU Athletics)