Tigers Hold Off RedHawks to Force Split

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Nov. 4, 2017

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OXFORD, Ohio -- Eying its second-straight weekend sweep, the Miami hockey team struck first, but dropped a tight 2-1 decision to Colorado College on Saturday.

Colorado College (6-4, 2-2 National Collegiate Hockey) snaps Miami's (4-4, 1-1 NCHC) three-game winning streak in forcing a weekend split.

Miami came out putting pucks on net right off the opening faceoff, getting quality time in the Colorado College zone and firing the first four shots on goal. The RedHawks got the first two power plays of the night midway through the frame. The first power play was killed off with little pressure on the CC net, but another penalty was taken immediately after the kill. Miami did generate a couple shots on its second try with a man advantage, but Colorado College held the attack at bay.

The RedHawks got on the board with 4:09 left as a good play by Austin Alger while off his feet allowed them to gain the offensive zone. Ryan Siroky got the entry feed and dished to Conor Lemirande at the right wing circle where he buried his first goal of the season to put MU up 1-0.

A Miami penalty nine seconds after the tally put Colorado College on the power play for the first time. The RedHawks were able to hold the Tigers to just one shot while keeping them off the board. MU was called for another penalty in the final minute of the frame, but managed to take its one-goal lead into the locker room.

While the RedHawks were able to kill over the carryover penalty, the Tigers were able to tie it up off a defensive zone turnover as Tanner Ockey got fed for a one-timer from the slot to even it at 1-1 just 2:05 into the second period.

The Tigers got a power play 7:31 into the frame, though the RedHawks were again able to escape that unscathed and keep the game tied. It appeared that would be how things would remain, but another MU penalty late in the period allowed CC one more chance to grab a lead. Colorado College beat the buzzer as Westin Michaud got fed at the left wing and picked the corner with 0.1 seconds remaining to give it a 2-1 lead after 40 minutes.

In comeback mode entering the third, Miami started to press for offense and went to a power play 4:14 into the frame. The RedHawks had one dangerous chance on a Louie Belpedio point shot that got deflected and bounced in on goal, but Alex Leclerc fought it off. MU was whistled for a penalty late in that man advantage, giving CC a chance to get some breathing room.

It appeared the Tigers did just that when Mason Bergh was fed in the middle and his slapshot went in, but officials took another look and determined that there was contact with Ryan Larkin that cancelled out the goal.

The RedHawks were under siege further when another penalty left the Tigers with a 5-on-3, but CC took a penalty off the ensuing faceoff to make it a long 4-on-3. Ryan Larkin did make a couple good point blank saves late in the man advantage to keep it a one-goal contest and allowed MU to escape that situation unscathed.

Miami kept pushing for a tying tally as the period wore on and had a golden chance late as Colorado College was whistled for a penalty with 1:01 remaining. Playing with a sixth skater and an empty net, MU won the ensuing faceoff and eventually worked the puck to the left point for a Grant Hutton one-timer that whistled by Leclerc, but rang off the post. MU had one more rush where it got the puck into the crease, but CC made one final clear to hold on for the win.

The RedHawks outshot the Tigers 27-14 overall, but went 0-for-6 on the power play while the Tigers clicked on 1-of-8 man advantages. Leclerc finished with 26 saves for CC while Larkin made 12 stops at the other end.

MU returns to the ice next weekend when it takes on North Dakota on the road. Puck drop for game one is at 8:37 p.m. ET.