DULUTH, Minn. — Minnesota Duluth remained unbeaten at home Friday night, but the Bulldogs were hardly celebrating.
Last-place Alaska Anchorage scored with 1:40 to play in the third period to salvage a 3-3 overtime tie with UMD in a Western Collegiate Hockey Association mens game before 4,199 at the DECC.
No. 16-ranked UMD (6-5-4, 5-5-3 in WCHA) is 4-0-3 at the DECC this season, yet the Bulldogs squandered a one-goal lead in the final period. They hurt themselves with four straight penalties in the last 15 minutes of regulation play, then couldnt win a faceoff in the defensive zone in the final two minutes.
Anchorage (4-5-4, 1-5-3) pulled goalie Jon Olthuis with 2:03 remaining, won a faceoff and scored the tying goal as winger John Lunden converted a Shane Lovdahl rebound. The puck went past a screened Alex Stalock.
We cant be giving wins away. We cant accept that, said UMD winger Nick Kemp, who had two goals. Give Anchorage credit for coming after us and playing well, but we cant take penalties like that in the third period and we have to bear down on draws and win those. We werent winning faceoffs all night and we werent moving our feet in the defensive zone.
The third place Bulldogs had a couple of bright spots. After going 1-of-44 on power plays the previous 12 games, they were 2-of-5, and scored a shorthanded goal. They also killed off six power plays and have blanked the opposition 21 straight times over five games.
Anchorage coach Dave Shyiak said his team played its best games of the season last weekend, in 1-0 and 4-1 home losses to first-place Colorado College, but was hardly satisfied with Fridays tie. Anchorage outshot UMD 35-27.
At the end of the day, we didnt play very well, but we found a way to get a point on the road in a building we havent had much success in, said Shyiak, whose school is 4-23-6 all time at the DECC. I liked the last six or seven minutes of the third period and overtime, and 5-on-5 UMD didnt get a whole lot of chances. But we have to be better on our power play.
Goals 30 seconds apart late in the first period gave Anchorage a 2-1 lead.
UMD led 1-0 on a Kemp shorthanded goal with 6:51 left in the opening period. Olthuis stopped a Matt McKnight left wing drive, but the puck went off the goalies blocker, back into play and off Kemp.
Anchorage countered as winger Merit Waldrop scored on a breakaway with 5:23 to go, then the
Seawolves continued to apply pressure. Center Peter Cartwright centered from behind UMDs net to Blair Tassone in the slot for a goal with 4:53 remaining.
UMD had the only goal of the second period as Kemp put in a Josh Meyers rebound off the end boards at 43 seconds for a power-play score. It was Kemps fifth of the season.
Then came a third period which started well for UMD ” an Andrew Carroll power-play goal at 4:34 ” but deteriorated.
When you have the lead in the third period you dont want to shut it down, but thats what we did, Carroll said. Anchorage came at us and we were sitting back. And taking penalties just ruined any momentum we had.
For the second straight Friday, UMD tied the WCHAs last-place team (it was 2-2 last week at Minnesota State-Mankato).
We were pretty average and were in a game that wasnt very pretty, said UMD coach Scott Sandlein. Killing so many penalties like we did in the third period means theres no flow to the game and it takes something out of you.
Over the last nine games, UMD is 2-4-3 and Anchorage 1-5-3.
Kevin Pates covers Minnesota-Duluth for the Duluth News-Tribune in Duluth, Minn.