OXFORD, Ohio — A packed Steve Cady Arena watched the St. Cloud State Huskies and the Miami Ohio University RedHawks open their regular seasons on Friday night. The fourth ranked RedHawks got 22 saves from their sophomore goalie Cody Reichard, and were able to fend off the No. 13 Huskies in overtime, 3-2, on a goal by Carter Camper.
The first period started off slowly for the RedHawks, who returned 17 letter winners from last years team. St. Cloud State shot early and often at Miami netminder Cody Reichard before finally breaking through 18 minutes into the game.
A slap shot from sophomore defender Oliver Lauridsen found the back of the net from the blue line, after junior center Garret Roe stole a pass in the Miami zone and flicked it back to Craig Gaudet. Gaudet found an open Lauridsen as St. Cloud State jumped out to a first intermission 1-0 lead.
Miami, who was outshot 14-10 in the first period, came out strong in the second, as freshman winger Curtis McKenzie tallied his first career goal for the RedHawks 1:36 into the period.
McKenzie found a loose puck in front of the goal and fired it past goaltender Dan Dunn after a shot by junior Andy Miele was deflected to him. Nearly eight minutes after McKenzies goal, Miami added another one on the power play, when junior Pat Cannone fired a pass from Carter Camper past Dunn for his first goal of the season.
Miami outshot the Huskies 11-5 in the second period.
We had a great second period, Miami head coach Enrico Blasi said. We were able to fix some of our mistakes that we made in the first period, and get a lot of shots on net in the second.
The third period saw Miami play a more puck-controlled game and for nearly 19 minutes, the RedHawks were able to keep the score in their favor. With time winding down, St. Cloud States Brian Volpei shot a rebound past Miami goaltender Reichard to tie the game at 2.
Miami came out strong in the overtime, and was able to stop two Husky chances early in the period before creating some of their own. Miami kept the in the Husky zone and eventually scored the winner 1:52 into the overtime period.
Junior captain Tommy Wingels fired a shot that was saved by Dunn, but a rebound chance for Carter Camper was the difference, as Camper took the puck around the net and fired it over Dunns shoulder for the victory.
Although it was a losing effort for St. Cloud State, coach Bob Matzko was pleased with his teams effort.
It was a great first game of the year, said Matzko. Both teams had their bright spots, and we had a few nervous moments, but overall I am very pleased. I think we could have made some better decisions on our power plays, especially the ones towards the end of the game, and hopefully we can change that going into tomorrow nights game.
Miami and St. Cloud State conclude their two game set tomorrow night at 7:05 p.m.
Overall, Blasi was pleased with his teams effort as well.
You never play comfortable with a team like St. Cloud State because they have so many weapons that they can use. They create a lot of opportunities for themselves, but that is where our goaltender (Reichard), came up big tonight.