ORONO, Maine — The Clarkson Golden Knights and Bowling Green Falcons came out hungry at the start of the consolation game of the Icebreaker Cup at Alfond Arena on Saturday. Both teams had good opportunities and the teams played to a hard-fought 1-1 tie.
The Falcons, though, claimed third place in a shootout.
Clarkson got things started quickly in the first period. After attacking off the opening face-off and buzzing around Tyler Masters’ net, the Golden Knights netted the first goal of the game only 38 seconds in.
Matt Poapst found the puck behind the net and fed the puck to Jay Latulippe in the right side of the low slot. He beat Masters with a one-timer to the glove side to put Clarkson ahead 1-0.
Clarkson threatened many other times in the first period, but Masters stood on his head, making some nice saves through traffic on two successive Clarkson power plays in the middle of the period.
Bowling Green started getting its act together near the end of the first, but it wasn’t enough to punch one in on a Clarkson team that was outworking the Falcons.
The second period lacked goals, but it didn’t like action. Bowling Green had two power-play opportunities early in the period on Ian Manzano and Mac Faulkner penalties at 1:22 and 4:30, respectively. But the Falcons couldn’t capitalize, and then the Golden Knights went on the attack.
A scramble in front of the Clarkson net caused three penalties to be called, including a double-minor for hitting after the whistle and instigating to Bowling Green senior Austin de Luis put Clarkson a man up at 6:47, after matching minors were given to Clarkson’s Matt Nagai and Bowling Green’s Steve Brudzewski.
Only 19 seconds later, freshman Ryan Minnabarriett took a cross-checking penalty to give Clarkson a two-man advantage for a full two minutes.
Masters again made save after save to keep the Golden Knights off the board. After the second minor to de Luis was almost over, defenseman Kevin Bieksa took a delay of game penalty to put Clarkson back up by two skaters for 41 more seconds.
Bowling Green killed both penalties, as Masters made a total of 11 saves on the kill, but the Falcons couldn’t turn the momentum into a goal. Their best chance came with about 5 minutes left in the period on a two-on-one. Scott Hewson broke down the left wing and then fed Greg Day between the circles.
Day had Clarkson goalie Matt Walsh dead to rights, but lifted his one-timer over the crossbar and the second period ended like it started, with a 1-0 Clarkson advantage.
Bowling Green spent most of the third trying to tie the game and finally did with 3:23 left in regulation. Colen Pappas took a shot from the left face-off dot that was kicked out to the front by Walsh. Darcy McConvey, while being held by a Clarkson defender, somehow found his way to the puck and beat Walsh to it, who came out to try and poke check the puck away. McConvey slipped it by Walsh to tie the score at 1.
Both teams had good chances to end the game in regulation, but both Walsh and Masters made great saves and it went to overtime.
Masters made three great saves in the first minute-and-a-half of overtime to keep things tied.
With under a minute left, Bowling Green had a two-on-zero and missed the net, then Clarkson had a two-on-one and missed the net as well.
That sent the game to a shootout to decide third place. In the seventh round, McConvey beat Walsh low to the stick side, and then Clarkson’s Matt Poapst missed wide to give the Falcons third place, but the game officially is called a tie.
Masters made 51 saves in net for the Falcons.
“We threw 52 shots at him, and about 40 of them were from point-blank range,” said Clarkson coach Mark Morris. “We played in their end most of the game, and a missed defensive coverage was the difference between a great win a tie.”
Bowling Green coach Buddy Powers was pleased with the effort. “I liked our energy level tonight,” he said. “We’ve got to stay out of the penalty box, but our goalie kept us in it.”
“My defense helped me out a lot,” Masters said of the performance. “Honestly, it’s easy when they clear rebounds. A lot of the game was easy for me tonight.”
Both teams have started the season 0-1-1. Bowling Green next heads to Northern Michigan while Clarkson will host Miami for two games.