DETROIT — Wayne State was pegged at the beginning of the season in the annual College Hockey America coaches’ poll as the team to beat this year. Findlay found out why first-hand as the Warriors swept the Oilers (10-18-2, 4-11-1 CHA) for the second time this season following Saturday’s 6-0 whitewash at the Great Lakes Sports City.
Six different players scored goals for WSU (16-11-3, 12-2-2 CHA) and junior goalie David Guerrera earned his first shutout, making 20 saves.
“The guys were starting to bug me about when I was going to get my first one,” Guerrera said. “Coach said I had to do a better job of controlling my rebounds and tonight I obviously did.”
“Dave was like Velcro out there,” WSU head coach Bill Wilkinson said. “Everything that came near him he jumped on.”
Nathan Rosychuk staked Wayne State to a 1-0 lead on a power play at 4:47 of the first period. Tyler Kindle put a shot on Findlay goaltender Jamie VandeSpyker that VandeSpyker could not control. Rosychuk banged the puck past VandeSpyker for his ninth goal of the year.
Chris Vail then continued his torrid goal-scoring pace at 3:08 of the second period. Jack Redwood’s shot hit the post and the puck was cleared by the Oilers’ defense. But Kindle kept the play on-side and put a hard shot on VandeSpyker. Again, the puck squirted free and Vail put home the loose puck for his ninth of the year. Vail now has seven goals in his last six games.
Warriors co-captain Jason Durbin scored his 13th goal on another man-advantage at 13:51. WSU displayed some nice tic-tac-toe passing and the puck ended up on Rosychuk’s stick to the left of VandeSpyker. Rosychuk’s shot went through the crease, where Durbin was waiting and buried the puck into the open net.
Jon Brink added to the WSU lead at 17:09. Co-captain Keith Stanich kept in a clearing attempt and ripped a shot on goal that VandeSpyker was unable to corral. Brink pounced on the puck and beat VandeSpyker glove-side for his ninth tally this season.
Redwood tacked on his ninth of the year 8:09 into the third period. Playing four-on-four, Nick Stodgell’s shot from the left point hit the post, but Redwood was all over the rebound.
John Grubb made it 6-0 at 12:18 on another WSU power play. Maxim Starchenko dished off to Grubb at the left-wing boards and Grubb snapped a shot top corner that VandeSpyker had little chance to stop.
“We’re rolling four solid lines right now,” said Wilkinson, whose team has won six straight games. “Rosychuk is improving, Billy Collins is playing better and it was really good to see Grubb get that goal on the power play.
“The boys are playing very confident right now and their attitude is very positive.”
The Warriors travel to Bemidji State next weekend and with a win can clinch the CHA regular-season title outright. Findlay plays host to Alabama-Huntsville.