St. Cloud, Minn. - St. Cloud State University men's hockey (3-2-0, 1-0-0 WCHA) opened the conference season with a big 5-1 victory over Minnesota State University, Mankato (2-1-2, 0-1-0 WCHA) on Friday, Oct. 26, 2012 before a rocking crowd at the National Hockey and Event Center in St. Cloud, Minn.
A trio of goals in the first period proved to be the winning margin for the Huskies as they rolled to the victory while outshooting the Mavericks 28-25 in the game.
Senior captain Ben Hanowski (Little Falls) opened the attack at 7:34 with a power play marker that was assisted by junior forward Nic Dowd (Huntsvllle Ala.) and senior forward Drew LeBlanc (Hermantown). Hanowski added the game winner at 14:48 of the first period with his second goal of the evening as the solo assist was added by LeBlanc. This was Hanowski's third goal of the season for the Huskies and his 48th career goal.
The first period attack was capped just 34 seconds later when Dowd marked his third goal of the season at 15:22 with assists going to junior defender Nick Jensen (Rogers) and sophomore forward Joey Holka (Phoenix, Ariz.). Jensen now has four assists this year, while it was the first assist of the year for Holka.
After a scoreless second period, the Huskies padded their lead in the third period with a goal by sophomore forward Kalle Kossila (Finland). LeBlanc posted his third assist of the game on the play, while the Huskies' second assist went to sophomore forward Brooks Bertsch (Dubuque, Iowa). The goal was Kossila's second of the year and it was Bertsch's first assist of the 2012-13 season.
The Mavericks broke the shutout in the third period with a marker by Evan Mosey at 8:53 with assists from Chase Grant and Brett Knowles.
To ice the event, LeBlanc marked his fourth point of the night with a goal at 19:12 of the third period. Kossila and freshman defender Ethan Prow (Sauk Rapids) provided the setup on the play for LeBlanc. Of note, this marked the fifth time in his career that LeBlanc has notched four points in a game. His last four point effort was against New Hampshire at the NHEC on Oct. 21, 2011.
LeBlanc now has 31 goals, 75 assists and 106 points in his career at SCSU, which places him 20th in the SCSU career scoring charts (NCAA Division I games only).
Sophomore goalie Ryan Faragher (Fort Frances, Ont.) earned the victory between the pipes for the Huskies with 24 saves in the game and it was also the Huskies' third consecutive victory. Phil Cook was the goalie of record for the Mavs with 23 saves.
On the power play, SCSU was 1-of-5 and the Mavs were 0-of-3 on the night. The Marty Sundvall Memorial Three Stars of the Games as sponsored by the St. Cloud Times were 1. Drew LeBlanc, 2. Ben Hanowski and 3. Nic Dowd.
GAME TWO - OCT. 27 at 7:07 P.M.
The Huskies and Mavericks will complete the two-game WCHA series at the NHEC at 7:07 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 27. Tickets are still available for this game and they can be purchased at the gate. You can purchase tickets in advance at www.scsutickets.com.
All SCSU students will be admitted FREE to this game. Just show a valid SCSU student ID at the gate and you get in FREE!
The always popular SCSU Family Four Packs will also be available for this contest. For just $50 you receive four tickets in the SCSU Family Section at the NHEC and two popcorns. The Family Four Packs are sponsored this year by Sodexo, Plaza Park Bank, St. Cloud Medical Group and the St. Cloud Times.