The Free Press, Mankato, MN

March 1, 2013

Mavericks fall at Colorado College

The Free Press

COLORADO SPRINGS, COLO. — Third periods have belonged to the Minnesota State men’s hockey team almost all season.

But Colorado College took control late Friday night.

The Tigers scored three third-period goals to upset the ninth-ranked Mavericks 3-1 in a WCHA game at the World Arena.

Alexander Krushelnyski scored two of CC’s goals and goalie Joe Howe made 16 of his 31 saves in the final 20 minutes.

The loss snapped a four-game winning streak and put the Mavericks in the midst of a three-way tie for fifth place in the league standings with three games remaining in the regular season. The top six get home ice for the playoffs. A win would have put MSU into a tie for third.

The game was scoreless until 3:38 of the second period when Mavericks freshman Dylan Margonari scored his ninth goal of the season.

Matt Leitner picked up his team-leading 25th assist on the play, and Johnny McInnis also assisted on the play.

Midway through the period, MSU suffered a big blow as Zach Lehrke was tossed from the game for a contact-to-the-head period. On the ensuing major penalty, CC’s Scott Winkler fired in a rebound to tie the game.

Lehrke’s game misconduct left the Mavericks a little thin down the middle, as he moved from wing to center when Eli Zuck was injured in the team’s last game. Nursing a lower-body injury, Zuck did not make the trip to Colorado.

Archie Skalbeck gave the Tigers a 2-1 lead with a power-play goal at 2:58 of the third period. At the 9:26 mark, Krushelnyski made it a two-goal game.

The Mavericks got a power play with less than four minutes to play, and coach Mike Hastings opted to pull goalie Stephon Williams (23 saves) for an extra attacker. The tactic failed, however, as Krushelnyski scored short-handed into the empty net to all but seal the win.

Mike Boivin had two assists for the Tigers.

The Mavericks (20-10-3, 14-10-1 in WCHA) and the Tigers will play again at 8:07 p.m. Saturday.