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NMU icers take down No. 11 Bowling Green

By Journal Sports Staff

BOWLING GREEN, Ohio — Heading into this weekend’s series against No. 11 Bowling Green State, the big question surrounding the Northern Michigan University hockey team was if it would be rusty after not playing a game since a Dec. 14 win over now-No. 3 Minnesota State.

As it turned out, the Wildcats weren’t affected at all by the long layoff as they took down the Falcons 5-2 Friday.

Griffin Loughran scored twice in the third period for NMU, while Nolan Kent made 38 saves to earn his second straight win in net.

Northern struck first at the 5:15 mark in the first period when Darien Craighead got a cross-ice pass from Ty Readman and beat Falcons goalie Eric Dop to the near post.

However, BG’s Alex Barber tied the game at 1-1 with a power play tally at the 18:26 mark and the Falcons almost scored again with 55 seconds left, but NMU defenseman Ben Newhouse blocked a shot by diving across the ice.

The Wildcats took the lead again with an early tally from defenseman Hank Sorensen at the 3:29 mark in the second period, but at the 10:42 mark, the Falcons answered back as Connor Ford skated behind the NMU net and fed a pass in front to Evan Dougherty, who then scored and tied the game at 2-2.

It took until late in the second for Northern to get its first power play of the game, but the Wildcats took advantage of the opportunity as defenseman Phil Beaulieu floated a shot over Dop’s shoulder to put NMU up 3-2 going into the third period.

BG put more pressure on Kent in the third period, putting 17 shots on net, but the sophomore netminder stood tall.

At the 13:35 mark, Loughran gave Kent some more offensive support as he received a cross-ice pass from Andre Ghantous and beat Dop blocker-side. Loughran later added an empty net goal to cap off the win.

The two teams tangle again tonight at 7:07 p.m.

Information compiled by Journal Sports Writer Ryan Stieg. His email address is rstieg@miningjournal.net.

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