Mankato, Minn. --- Seventh-rated Minnesota State used a potent power play and a smothering defense in opening Western Collegiate Hockey Association action with a 4-0 win over Alaska Friday in Mankato.
The host Mavericks converted on four of its eight power play chances and limited the visiting Nanooks to six shots on goal in the game.
Following a scoreless first period in which the Mavericks outshot the Nanooks by a 6-0 margin, a trio of goals with the man advantage put Minnesota State up 3-0 at the end of 40 minutes of action. Sophomore center Jake Jaremko found winger Reggie Lutz at the right dot and Lutz made no mistake, hammering a one-timer past Anton Martinsson on the glove side for his first goal of the season at the 4:35 mark of the second stanza. It became a 2-0 Minnesota State lead at the 10:18 mark when freshman winger Julian Napravnik scored his second goal of the year and then a 3-0 lead when Napravnik tallied after a rebound at 13:33. All three of Napravnik's goal this year have come on the power play.
Junior forward Charlie Gerard closed out the scoring in the game when he took a pass from Parker Tuomie and fired the puck into the yawning net at 5:13 of the final from, again, with Minnesota State on the power play. The goal is the second of the year for Gerard.
Besides the two goals from Napravnik and three assists from Parker Tuomie, sophomore defenseman Connor Mackey chipped in with two assists and Gerard finished with a goal and an assist.
Senior netminder Mathias Israelsson, who made his first career start in goal for Minnesota State, stopped all six shots he faced in the contest.
With the win the Mavericks up their record on the season to 4-1-0 (1-0-0 WCHA). Alaska falls to 0-6-1 overall, 0-1-0 WCHA.
The two teams close out the two-game league series Saturday night with a 7:07 face-off scheduled at Verizon Center in downtown Mankato.