FAIRBANKS, Alaska - The Alaska Nanooks hockey team shutout the Lake Superior State Lakers on Friday, Jan. 10, 2020. Gustavs Grigals picked up the win in net and recorded his first career shutout for the Nanooks. With the win, Alaska improved to 11-12-0, 9-8-0-0 WCHA.
The opening period between the Nanooks and Lakers was a quick defensive-battle. The first glimpse of action did not come until there was 11.5 seconds remaining on the clock. Max Humitz, the Lakers leading scorer thought he'd netted the game's first goal. After a five-minute review, the 'Nooks capitalized on a goaltender interference call, disallowing the LSSU goal and keeping the score knotted at 0-0 into the first intermission.
After a quick second period that saw no goals and not a lot of action, the third period held all the answers for the 'Nooks. Just over three minutes into the third period, Logan Coomes grabbed his first goal in the Nanooks uniform. After taking a pass from Filip Fornaa Svensson and Eriks Zohovs, the graduate-transfer put a shot in front of the net that knocked off a defenders skate and found the back of the net. After an LSSU review, the goal was confirmed and the 'Nooks grabbed the lead. Coomes had this to say about his first Alaska goal, "I kind of forced it a little bit but it went off the d-man's skate and went five-hole."
Grigals played a big part in the victory tonight, grabbing his first career shutout, making 28 saves and keeping the Lakers off the board. He felt his teams efforts around him helped him keep the zero on the board, "It's good to start the year with a shutout. It was a great team effort and we showed that we were better than Lake State today."
Grigals made some crucial saves late as the Lake State offense pressed forward which allowed for the 'Nooks to grab one more goal, securing the victory. After playing a puck in the air, Tyler Cline slid the puck off the blue line wall to James LaDouce, who with half a minute remaining, shot the puck 160 feet right to the back of the net, making it a 2-0 ballgame and a 2-0 win for Alaska, snapping their two-game slide.
The Nanooks will go for the sweep of LSSU on Saturday, Jan. 11 at 7:07 p.m. AKT in the Carlson Center. For more information on the Alaska Nanooks hockey team, follow @NanooksHockey on Twitter, or like the Alaska Nanooks Hockey team page on Facebook.