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Huskies flip script on NMU, win 3-1

By DAVER KARNOSKY

Houghton Daily Mining Gazette

HOUGHTON – Looking to bounce back after Northern Michigan University topped them on Friday night, the No. 16 Michigan Tech Huskies flipped the script used by the Wildcats on Saturday night to come away with a 3-1 win at the MacInnes Student Ice Arena.

Atte Tolvanen gave the Wildcats a chance to win with a strong effort, but it was not enough as head coach Walt Kyle felt he needed more from his several skaters.

“They got a couple of power play goals,” Kyle said. “They kept us under heavy forechecking pressure tonight. It could have been a lot worse if Tolvanen wouldn’t have been good.

“We didn’t get enough out of some of our guys. We just have enough of our top players perform as we needed them to perform.”

The Huskies (2-2 overall, 2-2 WCHA) dominated the first period, b ut Tolvanen was ready from the drop of the puck. He stopped three Huskies’ shots in the first minute and a half. From there, he continued to be a tough nut to crack as the Huskies fired 11 shots through the first nine minutes of action. He finished the night with 43 saves.

Part of that advantage came because the Huskies had an early power play, but could not solve Tolvanen no matter whether they fired shots from the slot, the point, or tried to crash the net for rebounds.

The Wildcats’ first good scoring chance came off the stick of Troy Loggins, who attempted a wraparound, but Jamie Phillips, who had only seen two shots up to that point, made the save.

On their fourth shot, the Wildcats scored. Gerard Hanson found John Siemer in a soft spot in the offensive zone. Siemer cut in alone and fired a wrist shot that beat Phillips near the left post for the tally at 15:24.

“He’s a real dynamic kid,” Kyle said about Siemer. “When he gets opportunities, he can put it away. Last night he had nine scoring chances, tonight he may have had one or two. He didn’t do enough tonight, but he when had that chance he put it in.”

Not long after the goal went in, the Wildcats (2-2-2 overall, 1-1 WCHA) found themselves down two men after a pair of tripping penalties. The Huskies were unable to get anything done on that advantage, but did strike twice on two power plays in the second period.

The three Huskies’ tallies came during a six-minute stretch of the middle frame.

The Wildcats struggled to challenge Phillips during the second half of the game until Barrett Kaib fired a long shot from the right point at Phillips. The rebound bounced to Dominik Shine, but his shot was also stopped by Phillips.

The Wildcats host Minnesota’s Bemidji State at 7:07 p.m. Friday and Saturday before heading up to Alaska-Fairbanks the following weekend.