FAIRBANKS, Alaska - The Alaska Nanooks hockey team dropped their second-straight Western Collegiate Hockey Association contest on Saturday, falling 5-2 to the Lake Superior State Lakers at the Carlson Center on Saturday night. The Nooks' overall record drops to 4-12-2 and 4-7-1-1 in conference play, while the Lakers improve to 9-6-1 overall and 6-5-1-0 in league matchups.
The Lakers walk away from the weekend with six conference points, placing them fourth in the league rankings with 19 points. The Nanooks sit in seventh place in the WCHA standings with 14 points through 12 conference games.
"Tonight was a tough result for our hockey team," head coach Erik Largen said on Saturday. "Overall, I was pleased with our five-on-five play, but our special teams was note good enough. Give credit to Lake State, they played well and executed their game plan all weekend. We need to come back after the break hungry to improve during the second half."
Lake Superior State kicked-off the scoring on Saturday night, netting back-to-back power play goals courtesy of Anthony Nellis and Max Humitz, all before the halfway point of the first period.
Sophomore forward Max Newton scored Alaska's first goal of the night also on the man-advantage, at the 16:49 mark of the first period. Newton cleaned up a rebound from freshman forward Sam Ruffin, while junior defenseman Tristan Thompson was awarded the secondary.
At the 19:12 mark, freshman defenseman Chris Jandric netted his third goal of the season, firing a slapshot from the point to tie the game at 2-2. C. Jandric's goal was assisted by fellow freshman defenseman Antti Virtanen and Ruffin, for his second point of the night.
Unfortunately for the Nanooks, LSSU's Brayden Gelsinger posted a hat trick to seal the victory, netting two power play goals in the second period before earning the empty-net tally late in the third.
Alaska outshot their opponent 30-19, boasting a period-high 14 shots on net in the third period. Lake Superior State's netminder Nick Kossoff earned 28 saves on Saturday to earn the win. Alaska junior goaltender Anton Martinsson registered nine saves through 27 minutes in net, before fellow junior netminder Niko DellaMaggiore earned five saves in relief.
The Nanooks went 1-fo-5 on the power play, while LSSU went 4-for-6 on the man-advantage.
The Alaska Nanooks hockey team will break for the holiday but return to the Carlson Center to host the Northern Michigan Wildcats in a two-game WCHA series Jan. 4-5. Puck-drop both nights is scheduled for 7:07pm AKST.