The Miami RedHawks extended their winning streak to six games and remained unbeaten this season after a 5-2 win over the University of Nebraska-Omaha Mavericks. The game was one of the roughest ever played at Steve Cady Arena.
UNO started out strong, and Dan Swanson scored at the five minute mark as the Mavericks blitzed Miami netminder Jeff Zatkoff.
From there, the game slowed until the 15 minute mark of the period. While UNO’s Mike Philippi had a delayed penalty, UNO’s Jeric Agosta got a five-minute major and game misconduct for hitting from behind and Brandon Scero got a 10-minute misconduct penalty. Miami’s Alexandre Lacombe also got a 10-minute misconduct.
After both the RedHawks and Mavericks sent two players each to the penalty box for coincidental minors, Miamis Ryan Jones tied the game up at one late in the period, sending the game into the intermission after what can only be described as a hectic five minutes.
The Mavericks seemed to be out for revenge after last night’s embarrassing 7-2 manhandling by the RedHawks. They opened up the second period with a Dan Charleston goal about five minutes into the second.
The lead was short-lived however, as Carter Camper charged down the ice and scored unassisted at the 7:31 mark. Miami built on that momentum moments later when Nino Musitelli scored.
The RedHawks got a little insurance late in the game when Camper scored on a Justin Mercier pass. The Mavericks pulled their goalie, and Gary Steffes got an empty-net tally to finish off the scoring.
“I thought it was an intense game,” said RedHawks’ head coach Enrico Blasi. “I thought they played extremely well. It was a one-goal game until the very end; it could have gone either way. I thought Zatkoff made some great saves for us, their guy made some good saves, it went back and forth. We happened to be opportunistic.”
While Blasi is happy about the team’s offensive production, he feels it is not the most important aspect of their play.
“Our focus is to win the game and play 60 minutes and play the best we can. If opportunities present themselves where we have to execute, then obviously we’re going to try to do that. We don’t think about trying to score more and more goals or anything like that.”
UNO played an extremely aggressive game all night. The Mavericks received 13 penalties, while Miami had 10 penalties.
“I thought our guys did a great job of killing penalties,” said Mavericks’ head coach Mike Kemp, “When you get that much time on the power play, I think our guys did a great job, especially on the 5-on-3′s. I wish (the game) had been rougher; I didnt think it was all that rough to be honest. Take a look at the calls.”
The NCAA has the option to exercise a one-game disqualification for players that receive penalties for checking from behind. Kemp didnt seem too afraid that he may lose two of his players to this rule.
“I’ll tell you what, if that happens, there is something seriously wrong,” noted Kemp.
The RedHawks’ win may enable them to overtake the University of North Dakota as the number one team in the nation after the Fighting Sioux lost 3-1 on Friday night.