DULUTH, Minn. — Minnesota-Duluth was looking for an offensive infusion from its leading scorers Saturday night as the first series of 2013 closed at Amsoil Arena.
Senior winger Mike Seidel and freshmen forwards Tony Cameranesi and Austin Farley had gone three games with a combined zero points and in that stretch, the Bulldogs were 1-2 with three goals total.
The revitalized trio led the way to a sweep of Michigan Tech in a nail-biting 5-4 victory, combining for three goals and four assists before a crowd of 6,829, the largest paid attendance since the building opened in 2010.
Cameranesi had two goals and an assist, Seidel three assists and Farley a goal.
“We did a lot of great things as a team [and] it was one of our stronger games,” said Cameranesi, the leading rookie scorer in the WCHA. “You get a little frustrated when you’re not scoring, but as long as you’re getting chances, you don’t mind, and we were getting chances. And you know eventually they’ll start going in.”
UMD (9-10-3, 7-6-3 WCHA) earned its first home Saturday win of the season after going 0-4 and won a fourth straight league game.
Michigan Tech (6-12-3, 3-10-3) is 0-5-3 in its last eight WCHA games and 1-10-2 the last 13 games against UMD, including 0-3-1 this season.
One of UMD’s better recent periods produced a 2-0 lead after 20 minutes. The Bulldogs dominated the opening minutes and Joe Basaraba drove a shot from the bottom of the right circle at 1:48 for a 1-0 lead. He had the only goal in Friday’s 1-0 victory.
Coming into the game, Michigan Tech freshman goalie Pheonix Copley had allowed just one goal over 185 minutes and 45 seconds, spanning four games.
After being outshot 8-0, Michigan Tech coach Mel Pearson took a timeout 2:45 into the game. The Huskies were sharper after that, but were turned away by Duluth goalie Matt McNeely.
Farley, one of three Bulldogs to sit out a one-game suspension Friday, surprised Copley with a quick shot from the left circle that hit high in the net with 2:08 left in the first period. It was Farley’s eighth collegiate goal.
“We got a lead, we maintained a lead and played one of our most consistent games,” said Minnesota-Duluth coach Scott Sandelin. “All of our lines played well and each time Michigan Tech got close, we battled back and responded.”
Michigan Tech was much better in the second period, scoring twice, but couldn’t contain Cameranesi.
He got loose for a breakway in a four-on-four shift, putting the puck inside the right pipe at 6:14. He then got an excellent Seidel pass on a power play, also at the right edge, with 3:03 left in the period for a 4-2 advantage. Cameranesi has 10 goals and 22 points in 22 games to tie Seidel for the team scoring lead.
UMD was two-of-three on power plays and Michigan Tech one-of-three, getting the Huskies within 4-3 on Steven Seigo’s score just 80 seconds into the third period.
Defenseman Wade Bergman countered by stepping around a stick check and firing low right on a power play for the Bulldogs with 9:58 to play.
“We got off to a slow start and were playing from behind the whole game, but I can’t fault our effort,” said Pearson. “One of our goals was to get to the scoring area and we did a better job of that.”
After Copley was pulled for an extra attacker with 2:46 to play, Michigan Tech’s David Johnstone converted with 2:25 remaining. Copley was then pulled with 58 seconds to go, but the Bulldogs were able to control the puck, twice missing empty nets.
UMD led 35-32 in shots on goal.
“We had more quality shots, more offensive zone time,” said Seidel. “We didn’t want to set back because we knew Michigan Tech would come after us. We wanted to keep the pressure on and for the most part, it was a great effort.”