Schwartz-less and punchless, Colorado College squandered a golden opportunity to gain ground in its quest for a home-ice playoff berth on Friday.
The Tigers suffered an embarassing 5-1 defeat to Minnesota State University, a team that took the ice tied for ninth place in the WCHA, to open their two-game weekend series at the World Arena.
And, believe it or not, it wasn't as close as the score indicates.
True, CC was missing both Jaden and Rylan Schwartz for the first time this season, as the brothers recuperate from injuries. But other than a nice goal by right winger William Rapuzzi early in the third period, set up by fellow sophomore Scott Winkler, no one came close to stepping up for the home team in this debacle.
Minnesota State's Eriah Hayes, also a sophomore, fueled the assault with a pair of late tallies that helped the visitors pull away after Rapuzzi's red lighter got the Tigers to within 2-1 at 1:46 of the final frame. Junior left wing Michael Dorr added a goal and an assist for the Mavericks, who inched into a three-way tie for eighth place in the conference standings.
MSU, which also got goals from Justin Jokinen and Mike Louwerse, along with 21 saves by junior netminder Austin Lee, improved to 13-12-6 overall and 7-12-4 in league play.
Colorado College, meanwhile, remained tied for sixth in the WCHA despite falling below the .500 mark at 10-11 in league play, but now is only three points out of 10th. CC, one of five teams separated by only two points for the sixth and final home-ice playoff spot, dropped to 16-14-1 overall heading into Saturday's rematch.
The Tigers failed to cash in on the power play for the fourth consecutive contest, going 0-for-4 with a total of one shot on goal while holding the man advantage. Minnesota State capitalized on two of its four chances.