OXFORD, Ohio — Miami surrendered a third-period lead for the first time this season, allowing Bowling Green to rattle off three unanswered third-period goals and claim the lead in the teams’ best-of-three CCHA playoff series with a 4-3 win Thursday night.
An A.J. Kratofil goal, the first of the freshman’s collegiate career, had given Miami a 3-1 lead at 2:15 in the third period, but Bowling Green retaliated with goals by Tyler Knight, Scott Hewson and Ryan Murphy over the next 12 minutes of the third period to end a three-game Miami winning streak.
The loss dropped the second-seeded RedHawks to 20-15-2 on the season while raising ninth-seeded Bowling Green to 14-18-5.
Despite surrendering the game’s first goal to Bowling Green’s Marc Barlow at 12:39 in the first period, Miami controlled much of the game’s early action, matching a season high with 20 first-period shots on goal.
Senior Pat Leahy knotted the score at 15:23 in the opening period with Mike Glumac and Nick Jardine on the assists. With the point, Leahy reached 100 for his career, becoming the 31st Miami player to join the century club.
Miami claimed its first lead early in the second when Evan Cheverie found the open side of the net after being set up by teammates Anthony Donskov and Chris Knupp. The RedHawks, who were previously 17-0 this season when entering the third period ahead, advanced the lead on Kratofil’s goal, which was assisted by Gregor Krajnc.
The loss was the sixth postseason defeat in a row for the RedHawks, who have not won a CCHA playoff game since 1997. Miami, which had previously never lost the opening game of a home CCHA playoff series, had won its last five home playoff games. Miami has never lost a CCHA playoff series in Goggin Arena.
Bowling Green and Miami clash again Friday at 7:35 p.m. at Goggin Arena.