BEMIDJI, Minn. - Making his collegiate debut, Bemidji, native Nick Leitner capped a two-goal, third-period comeback to draw the Bemidji State University men's hockey to a 2-2 tie with No. 7 St. Cloud State University with 5:36 to play. His first goal as a Beaver would stand as the game-tying goal as BSU and SCSU split the nonconference series.
Different from the series opener, it was the Beavers who were on the wrong side of a scoring surge and found themselves down 2-0 to open the third period despite going toe-to-toe the Huskies and outplaying them for stretches during the first 40 minutes. Strangely the Beavers held a 29-25 edge in shots on goal after two periods, which included a dominant 20-shot second period.
The teams played more than 36 minutes of scoreless hockey before the visitors lit their half of the scoreboard on a slapshot goal from Nick Poehling from the top of the slot. At the 17:41 mark, Tyler Kirkup was whistled for slashing supplying SCSU with its only power-play chance of the night and the Huskies would use the break to stretch their lead to 2-0. The power-play goal came on a tick-tac-toe play finished on the stick of Easton Brodzinski from the left post with just 47 seconds left in the second period.
The Beavers got on the scoreboard at the 5:02 mark of the third period. Nick Cardelli skated the puck out from behind the SCSU goaltender, around the zone and found Owen Sillinger on the doorstep for his first goal of the season. Alex Ierullo was also credited with an assist on the play. Late in period, and moments after a BSU power-play chance expired, Leitner carried the puck into the zone and unleashed a shot from the right faceoff circle that trickled through the SCSU defensive pair and past the Huskies' goaltender David Hrenak.
Junior goaltender Henry Johnson got the start for BSU and piled up 30 saves playing in all 65 minutes of the draw. His 30-save night matched a career-high set Dec. 29, 2018 in a 3-3 tie at Air Force.
Bemidji State will get a week free from competition before making a trip west to the University of North Dakota Oct. 25-26 for a nonconference series at Ralph Engelstad Arena in Grand Forks, N.D.
The Beavers will enter the series 0-0-2.