MCHA, MIAC and NCHA wrap: Feb. 7

The Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference race continues to resemble Chicago’s O’Hare on Thanksgiving Eve as Concordia (Minn) and St. Thomas are locked in a second place tie while there is a four-team log jam for the fifth and final playoff spot heading into the final two weeks.
No. 8 Hamline maintains a two-point edge in first place after being upset by St. John’s, 3-1, Thursday. The two teams battled to a 3-3 stalemate on Saturday. The Pipers (12-4-5, 7-1-4) play a home-and-home series with Gustavus Adolphus (12-7-2, 6-4-2) Friday and Saturday.
The race for second place continues to heat up as Concordia and Gustavus split their weekend series, with the Cobbers winning handily, 9-1, on Friday and the Gusties prevailing 3-1 Saturday. To keep pace, St. Thomas (12-9-2, 7-5-2) nabbed a tie and a win in its weekend series with St. Olaf.
The Johnnies’ three-point weekend against the league leaders allowed them to enter the playoff fray with Augsburg, Bethel and St. Olaf. All four schools have 10 points.
In Thursday’s 3-1 victory, James Saintey, Alex Lindeberg and Mike Wallgren scored for St. John’s, which was down 1-0 after Ryan Kupperman’s first-period goal.
Joe Harren’s goal with 2:45 left capped off an enthralling three-goal comeback in Saturday’s contest. Kyle Mattson, Jordan VanGilder and Kupperman scored for Hamline, which led 3-0 going into the third period. St. John’s Tobias Lindro kick-started the rally with a goal 7:57 into the third while Trent Johnson’s tally at 16:30 brought the Johnnies to within one.
Harren’s game-tying goal came 45 seconds later, as the Warroad, Minn., sophomore broke in and beat Pipers netminder Matt Hemingway. Johnnies’ netminder Tony Civello stopped  77 shots during the series.
“We want to make the playoffs, but we needed those points against Hamline to make it happen for us,” St. John’s coach Doug Schueller said.  ”We got it done by playing solid hockey those two nights.”
St. John’s (5-14-2, 4-6-2) hosts Saint Mary’s (4-14-2, 3-7-2) Friday and Saturday.
The Cardinals are in last place but only sit two points behind playoff aspirants St. John’s, Augsburg, St. Olaf and Bethel.
Augsburg (10-8-3, 4-6-2) plays a home-and-home with St. Olaf (9-8-4, 3-5-4) this weekend in another match up with playoff implications.The Auggies swept Saint Mary’s, 4-3 and 5-3, to push their overall record (10-8-3, 4-6-2) past .500.  Loren Egan scored the game-winner in Friday’s contest while  Nick Guran supplied the deciding goal in Saturday’s victory.
Guran led Augsburg with three goals in the series while defenseman Kris Reinthaler scored twice and added two assists for a four-point weekend.
St. Olaf came away with a 2-2 tie and a 2-1 loss against St. Thomas in a home-and-home series.  Ross Trousdale and Austin Wetmore scored for the Oles, who led 2-1 before St. Thomas’ Riley Horgan netted the game-tying goal with 9:53 left in regulation in Friday’s game. St. Thomas’s Rob Philipp scored the game-winner in Saturday’s rematch. Rob Vannelli had the Tommies’ other goal while  Jeff Warren replied for the Oles with 2:11 left.

Winless streak falls
Finlandia erased the albatross of a 13-game losing streak when it upset visiting Marian, 2-1, on Friday. The Lions couldn’t parlay the victory into a sweep, losing 5-2 to the Sabres on Saturday.
The weekend split left Finlandia at 2-18 overall, 2-14 in the Midwest Collegiate Hockey Association. Sebastian Rosendahl and Cameron Goude scored first-period goals for the Lions, who led 2-0 before Dakota Dubetz answered for Marian (15-6, 12-4) with a goal in the third period. The Sabres had two goals disallowed in the first period.
Lions’ senior goalie Ryan Donavon stopped 43 of 44 shots to earn his 24th career win.
“The boys get all the credit,” first-year head coach John McCabe told the Marquette Daily Mining Gazette. “They worked hard, and obviously Donovan stood on his head tonight. He showed what he can do and what he has done before.”
Donavon was also the winning goalie for his team’s last win, which occurred Nov. 12 in a 3-1 decision over Concordia (Wis.).
While the Lions could take in the glow of victory for one day at least, Concordia’s woes continued, as the foundering Falcons dropped a home-and-home series to No. 10 Milwaukee School of Engineering,  5-1 and 3-1. Concordia is winless in its last 13 outings with a 4-4 tie against Northland Jan. 29 the lone bright spot.
The Falcons (1-19-1, 3-16-1) host No. 6 Adrian (17-3-1, 14-1-1) Friday and Saturday.

Superior drought
Wisconsin-Superior’s slide continued, as the Yellowjackets lost 3-0 to No. 2 St. Norbert and Wisconsin-Stevens Point, 4-3, during the weekend.
UW-Superior (12-10-1, 9-7) has dropped five straight while being shutout in three of those contests.
Despite the skid, UW-Superior remains in second place in the Northern Collegiate Hockey Association behind St. Norbert, which clinched the regular season crown with a 5-3 win over St. Scholastica Saturday.
John Forsythe’s goal at 14:18 of the first period in Saturday’s loss to UW-Stevens Point snapped a 199-minute scoreless streak for the Yellowjackets. Both teams continued to trade goals until Nick Kenney netted the Pointers’ game-winner with 1:16 left.
Justin Faryna and Joey Massingham accounted for UW-Superior goals while Kyle Heck, Max Bobrow and Harrison Niemann scored for UW-Stevens Point (12-11, 8-8).