Well, if you were writing a book, you couldn't write it any better. Two weekends in a row in locations separated by over 3,000 miles, the 'Nooks last minute push gets it done again. This time, Colton Beck buries the game winner with 11.0 on the clock with his parents watching in the stands. It was a great play crashing the net as Michael Quinn put the puck on net and Colton Beck got a stick on it and buried it.
Persistence pays off as the Nanooks took it to the Lakers early in the first period, catching LSSU on their heels. But they couldn't buy a goal if they wanted to. Kevin Murdock played a phenomenal game in the absence of Kevin Kapalka making 37 saves, and had a goose egg going through the first 49 minutes of the game. But it was Chris Ciotti who caught a lucky bounce off of his skate with just the 4th shot on goal on a play created by Domenic Monardo as his puck possession around back of the net caused the 'Nooks D-men to over pursue a bit, as Monardo let an open pass to the front of the net go that just happens to hit Ciotti's skate in the right place. Even after a review, they determined that it wasn't kicked in. That's hockey, and tonight was definitely a defensive battle.
The equalizer came from Colton Parayko pinching down, and it looked to me like it went off a defender's stick. There was a lot of traffic down low so it was really hard to see how it actually developed from the booth down low, but the important part was the puck hit the back of the net. Again, persistence and getting pucks to the net creates scoring chances, or in some cases like this creates a bounce that gets shined upon by the Hockey Gods and results in goals like these.
I thought the 'Nooks got off to a great energetic start, but a lot of that energy seemed to taper off. Early on in the first the 'Nooks took it to the Lakers, outshooting them 13-3 at one point. I'm not sure where that went, but the Lakers didn't seem to be doing anything different. Just the Nanooks weren't hitting some of the passes, and the puck just didn't want to cooperate at times bouncing over sticks and such. I hope they can get back to that groove to start tomorrow and keep putting that pressure on and getting scoring chances. If that pressure kept up early, the outcome of tonight's game would have been a little bit different. On a separate note, Sean Cahill played outstanding tonight. We should see him earn a start tomorrow night after that performance.
Tomorrow, the 'Nooks look to sweep the first CCHA series of the last season in the conference at home after tonight's 2-1 win, which ties them for 1st in the CCHA at the moment. Hope to see everyone at the rink tomorrow. Bring the brooms.