Mankato, Minn. --- Third-ranked Minnesota State scored a first-period goal and held on the rest of the way en route to 1-0 victory over #15 Northern Michigan in a Western Collegiate Hockey Association contest played in Mankato Saturday night.
Sophomore goaltender, Dryden McKay continues his impressive season, stopping all 21 shots he faced, in extending his single-season school record for shutouts to eight. McKay is also now the all-time school career leader with 12 shutouts at MSU, breaking the previous record of 11 he shared with former Maverick netminder Cole Huggins (MSU 2013-2017).
The game's lone goal came in the opening period, when junior center Jared Spooner converted on a nice backdoor goal set up by Walker Duehr. Duehr took a pass out of the defensive zone from line mate Dallas Gerads, made a great toe drag around NMU defender before eventually setting up Spooner at the 13:35 mark. The goal for Spooner is his ninth of the year and first game-winning goal of the season.
Northern Michigan outshot the Mavericks by an eight-seven margin in the scoreless second period.
The third period was another scoreless period, after a great defensive battle by both teams. The Wildcats outshot the Mavericks nine to three in the third period, which helped them eventually outshoot the Mavericks in the contest, 22 to 21.
With tonight's win McKay improves his record to 25-3-2. The second-year netminder leads the country in wins (25), goals against average (1.37) and shutouts (8) and ranks second in save percentage (.939).
The Mavericks, now with a 26-4-1 (20-3-0 WCHA) record, closed out the two-game league series, with a sweep of the Wildcats 16-10-4 (14-7-1 WCHA). After an off week, the Mavericks face-off against University of Alabama Huntsville on Friday, February 21st at 7:07 p.m., and Saturday, February 22nd at 6:07 p.m., with a league series in Mankato.