SAULT STE. MARIE, Mich. - The No. 20 Lake Superior State posted a 4-1 win over the University of Alabama Huntsville Chargers on Saturday, Feb. 20 at the Taffy Abel Arena in Sault Ste. Marie, Mich. to complete the weekend sweep in a Western Collegiate Hockey Association (WCHA) series.
Mitchell Oliver, Hampus Eriksson, Louis Boudon and Brandon Puricelli recorded the Laker goals in the game as the Lakers extended their win streak to five games. Lake Superior State has strung together five consecutive wins for the first time since the 2018-19 season, when the Lakers won eight straight games from Dec. 7, 2018 through Jan. 11, 2019. Freshman goaltender Ethan Langenegger got the start in goal for the Lakers and earned his second career win with 19 saves in his second career start.
With the win, the Lakers improve to 12-4-3 overall and 6-3-0 in conference play this season for a total of 17 WCHA points. Following Saturday's WCHA games, the Lakers are in a three way tie for second place in the league standings with Bowling Green and Northern Michigan. Lake Superior has a game in hand over both teams.
For the second straight game against UAH, the Chargers scored the game's first goal. Quinn Green redirected a shot by Dayne Finnson past Laker goaltender Langenegger for a 1-0 lead at 5:33 of the first period.
At 10:41 of the first period, the Lakers tied the game at one when Oliver scored his third goal of the season. The play started with an offensive zone faceoff that Boudon won cleanly. Pete Veillette grabbed the loose puck and sent a pass back to Oliver, who was at the blue line. Oliver fired a wrist shot that made its way through traffic and would beat UAH goaltender David Fessenden on his blocker side.
Eriksson would score the Lakers second goal of the game and the eventual game winning goal at 4:16 of the second period. The senior forward would collect the puck from Miroslav Mucha and circled through the offensive zone with the puck before firing off a quick shot that went into the short side top corner of the UAH net to beat Fessenden. Senior forward Yuki Miura would record secondary assist on the goal.
Seconds after a Laker power play expired, Boudon would score to bring the Lakers lead up to 3-1 at 7:15 of the second period. The Lakers would hold the puck in the offensive zone for a lengthy shift, thanks to good puck movement from the power play unit on the ice. Veillette, who was stationed at the top of the circle, would send a pass to Eriksson who was on the doorstep. Eriksson sent a between the legs pass through the crease and Boudon was able to redirect the puck off the far post and over the goal line for the two goal advantage on the scoreboard.
Puricelli would complete the game's scoring at 2:40 of the third period after he forced a turnover in the neutral zone. The sophomore forward would skate in on Fessenden all alone and would slide the puck in on his backhand to give the Lakers the 4-1 lead.
The Lakers would finish the game outshooting the Chargers, 21-20. Langenegger earned his second career win in his second career start as he stopped 19 shots from Alabama Huntsville. Fessenden finished the game with 17 saves for UAH.
The Lakers will have a few days off before heading to Houghton, Mich. for a Tuesday afternoon game against the No. 18 Michigan Tech Huskies at 2:07 p.m. at the John MacInnes Student Ice Arena. The game was originally scheduled for the weekend of Jan. 22-23 but was postponed due to COVID-19 protocols. The two teams played the first game of the postponed series last Tuesday, Feb. 16 with the Lakers winning by a final score of 3-1.