What a series by the Nanooks at Houghton this weekend. Coming off a bye week, the 'Nooks took an extra day to get up to the UP and it paid off. A big weekend and 4 points needed and received for the 'Nooks to solidify their position and get into the playoffs. Nothing of course is guaranteed, but the 'Nooks now have a tie in 3rd with 24 points, with the tie breaker with 11 conference wins vs UAA/BG/MTU each with 10. Now, BG and UAA play a bit later tonight and it would be in the Nanooks best interest for the two to tie yet again.
And in the first, they started right where they left off with Colton Beck notching a pair of goals. The first on a flurry in front of the net to put the 'Nooks on the board. Then another with just 5 seconds to go in the period working on a 5 minute major to Malcolm Gould for checking an already injured Michael Quinn from behind. Quinn got down to block a shot earlier in the shift, then moments later played the puck along the boards and got railed into the boards. Gould got the gate and the Nanooks capitalized.
Cody Kunyk made a great play on a no-look cross the crease pass to an open Colton Beck on the back door who buried in the open net. Such talent with those two. Beck with two goals, and Kunyk with the primary assist on both.
In the 2nd, the 'Nooks kept lighting the lamp with 3 more. Nolan Huysmans buried a backhand feed from Larson across the crease down low on a 3 on 2 rush on a forced turnover by Hochhausen. Then the Morley Brothers connect as Tyler nabbed the puck on an errant play by Tech defenseman Leibinger. Tyler made the shot, and beat Copley but the puck sat laying on the crease for Brandon to tap in for the 4-0 lead.
The 'Nooks extended to a 5-0 lead as Nolan Huysmans swung the puck towards the goal that trickled through as Larson got the deflection, but paid the price as Leibinger put his shoulder into Nolan, and apparently knocked the wind out of him as he was slow to get up. But he did skate off under his own power, and was right back on the ice next shift.
Then Tyler Morley buried the 6th goal from a behind the net feed from Beck, and Michael Quinn had the last laugh after the MTU defense ignored him on the rush and he rifled top shelf over the glove of Williams for the 14th goal on the weekend.
Nanooks now with 24 points, but BG and UAA play again tonight after tying last night putting each of them to 24 points. So one of them at least will jump. Nanooks of course close the season with Anchorage at home. Now with a week off, the 'Nooks can only watch as 3 other series take place next weekend, including Lake Superior with a series at Alabama-Huntsville.