Mankato, Minn. --- Fourth-ranked Minnesota State jumped out to a 2-0 first-period lead and didn't trail the rest of the way en route to a 2-1 home win over #19 Michigan Tech Friday night.
The host Mavericks are now 17-3-1 on the year and raised their Western Collegiate Hockey Association record to 12-1-0 with the victory.
On a play that started deep in its own zone when freshman Akito Hirose passed to his senior defense partner Jack McNeely, Sam Morton finished off a partial breakaway after the puck was one-touched by Ryan Sandelin at the 13-minute mark. The goal is the third of the year for Morton. Sophomore center Nathan Smith was credited with the second Mavericks goal after a pass from Walker Duehr bounced off him past Blake Pietila at 15:43 and after the first 20 minutes action Minnesota State led 2-0.
Following a scoreless second period in which the Mavericks outshot the Huskies by a 15-7 margin, Tech pushed back early in the third period. Trenton Bliss one-timed a pass from Arvid Caderoth past Dryden McKay for a power play marker at the 0:33 mark to make it 2-1 and the score remained that way for the rest of the game.
The Mavericks went scoreless in two power play chances in the game, while the Huskies were one-for-four. Minnesota State outshot the Huskies by a 35-26 margin and McKay, who stopped 25 shots, upped his record on the year to 16-2-0 mark for the year with the win.
The two teams close out the regular season tomorrow with a 6:07 p.m. face-off scheduled for Mayo Clinic Health System Event Center.