MIAC flexes muscle
The MIAC flexed its muscle over the weekend in pivotal crossover matchups with teams from the WIAC Friday night. Augsburg rolled to a big win over Wisconsin-Eau Claire, and Saint Mary’s took down Wisconsin-Stevens Point.
Augsburg completed a season sweep of the Blugolds with its 5-1 win Friday night. Ryan Cagnoni scored twice to pave the way. The goals were the first two of his collegiate career. Erik Brenk came through with a goal and an assist, and Max Pernhem dished out two assists. Augsburg took control early, scoring the first three goals of the game to grab a 3-0 advantage after one period, and never looked back as it continued its domination offensively. Augsburg has outscored opponents 51-34 on the season.
Nick Schmit played well in goal, racking up 35 saves to win his sixth game of the year. Schmit leads the conference in goals-against average (1.61) and save percentage (.947). The Auggies fell 5-2 to Wis.-Stevens Point the next night, however, but are 10-3-2 on the year overall.
As for Saint Mary’s, the Cardinals skated to a 4-2 win over the Pointers Friday. The Cardinals took control against the Pointers in the second period, scoring twice to extend their lead to 3-1. Chad Cesarz helped propel Saint Mary’s to the win, scoring a power-play goal less than two minutes into the opening period. It was his seventh goal of the year. Cesarz scored a second goal in the win and Martin Gruse also scored twice as the Cardinals pushed their win streak to two games and won their ninth game of the year. Phil Heinle played a huge role in slowing down one of the nation’s best offenses. He stopped 38 shots and won his fifth game of the year.
Cesarz and Gruse both scored in Saturday’s game against Wisconsin-Stout, but the Blue Devils used a game-winning power-play goal by Colton Brausen to lead Wis.-Stout to a 6-5 win in overtime. It was one of three power-play goals the Blue Devils scored in the win. Riley Colvard and Alex Toscano tallied the other two.
Wisconsin-River Falls won two games over the weekend, including a 4-1 win over Gustavus on Saturday night. The Falcons defeated Bethel 7-2 Friday. Wis.-River Falls is now 8-9-1 on the year. Aussie Miller scored his second goal of the season in the win and Michael Lant tallied his sixth goal of the year. Hunter Vorva made 22 saves in the victory for his first win of the season in goal. The only goal he allowed was to Jake Bushey. The Gusties fell to 1-10-4 on the year. Wis.-River Falls held a 32-23 advantage in shots and won its fourth game against a MIAC opponent.
After struggling in a loss to Saint Mary’s, Wis.-Eau Claire bounced back in a big way Saturday, rolling past St. Thomas, 5-1. Jake Bresser punched in his first career goal and Jesse Tredinnick came through with his fifth goal of the season. Colton Wolter also scored in the win, coming through with his ninth goal of the season. Wolter has a total of 19 points on the season. The Blugolds pushed their season record to 12-3-3. St. Thomas scored its only goal in the third period as Michael Dockry scored for the Tommies, who fell to 7-5-3. Jay Deo stepped up defensively, stopping 21 shots. He won his 11th game of the year.
Hamline went into its MIAC series with Concordia in need of momentum, having lost five consecutive games, and the Pipers found it. After tying the Cobbers 1-1 in the opener — the Cobbers won the shootout 2-1 — they closed out the weekend with a 4-2 win. Justin Quale was sensational in goal. After stopping 47 shots on Friday, he made 26 saves Saturday as the Pipers moved into fourth place in the conference standings at 4-3-1. They are 7-6-3 overall. Quale has played in three games for Hamline at the Moorhead Sports Center and has allowed only three goals in that time while racking up 103 saves.
Russ Jordan was his usual self offensively, scoring his 12th goal of the year in the series finale. Jaycob McCombs, Jesse Kessler, and Brandon Reinholz all scored as well for the Pipers, who outshot the Cobbers 33-28. The goal by Kessler was his fifth of the year, and he helped Hamline improve to 3-2-2 in road games this year. Zach Doerring and Garrett Hendrickson both scored for the Cobbers in Saturday’s game.
The Cobbers went into the series riding a five-game win streak and while their win streak came to an end, their unbeaten streak remained intact, reaching six games. Jon Grebosky scored the lone goal for the Cobbers in regulation. Mario Bianchi and Dalton Mills both scored for the Cobbers in the shootout. Jake O’Borsky scored the lone goal for Hamline in regulation Friday. Brandon Wahlin scored a goal in the shootout for the Pipers.
St. Olaf and St. John’s closed out their series Saturday with a 2-2 tie. JT Paine and Drew Otto both scored for the Oles, who ended up winning the shootout 2-0 to finish with five of the six points up for grabs over the weekend. Jude Hull stopped 42 shots for St. Olaf and is 1-1-1 over his last three games. His save percentage of .931 is the third-best in the MIAC.
Robb Stautz and Mitch Fritz both scored for the Johnnies, who fell to 8-6-3 overall and 3-3-2 in the MIAC. The Oles are 4-10-2 overall and 2-5-1 in the conference.
Otto played a pivotal role in Friday’s 2-0 win as well, scoring the game-winner in the second period. Paine scored an empty-net goal with 16 seconds remaining and Eric Hancock stopped 33 shots to earn the shutout win and help the Oles snap a two-game losing streak.
St. Scholastica tied Milwaukee School of Engineering Friday, but closed out the series Saturday with a 6-4 victory. The Saints trailed by three goals in Friday’s game before rallying to force a 3-3 tie by scoring three goals in an eight-minute stretch. The Saints found themselves trailing by two goals Saturday, but scored four goals in the third period to pull away for a 6-4 win. Brandon Millin, who finished the weekend with five points, scored to cut the deficit to 4-3 and then scored again less than two minutes later to tie the game at 4-4. Cole Golka gave St. Scholastica the lead for good and Brett Radford finished off the scoring for the Saints, who are 8-6-1 overall and 6-3-1 in the conference. Radford’s point streak is now at seven games.
Zane Steeves started in goal and made 35 saves to earn his first win at the college level.
Marian swept Concordia over the weekend in an NCHA series. The Sabres won the opener 2-1 and then closed out the weekend with a 3-1 win. Curtis Lewington scored twice to pace the Sabres. He scored once off the power play. Jake Switzer scored the lone goal for the Falcons. Mike Baldwin made 23 saves in the win and improved to 8-4-1 on the season. The Sabres have won four consecutive games and are 9-7-1 overall and 7-5 in the NCHA.
Lawrence and Aurora played to a 2-2 tie Friday before the Vikings nailed down a 5-3 win over the Spartans in the series finale Saturday. Nick Felan was instrumental to the success of the Vikings in Saturday’s game, scoring twice as the Vikings rallied for a win. Lawrence trailed 2-1 entering the second period before Felan scored both of his goals to put the Vikings in front for good. Mattias Soderqvist made 23 saves as he played the final 45 minutes of the game for the Vikings, who are 5-8-2 overall and 4-4-2 in the conference. Brendan Logan gave the Spartans an early 1-0 lead and Tim Santopoalo put the Spartans in front 2-1 with 5:27 left in the opening period. The Spartans are 3-11-1 overall and 3-6-1 in the NCHA. Their winless streak is at seven games.