OMAHA, Neb. - The Omaha hockey team built three two-goal leads and then held on for a 4-3 win over Michigan Tech on Friday night at the CenturyLink Center.
It was the third straight win for the Mavericks who moved into sole possession of second place in the WCHA, improving their overall record to 16-9-2 overall and 12-5-2 in the WCHA. The Huskies dropped to 7-13-4 overall and 4-11-4 in league play.
Leading 3-1 entering the third period, Michigan Tech closed the gap when Alex Petan knocked home the rebound of a shot by David Johnstone at 1:52.
The Mavericks restored the two-goal lead on the power play when Dominic Zombo swept home the rebound of a shot by Andrej Sustr at 12:19.
The Huskies again narrowed the advantage on their own power play. Tanner Kero's shot from the left point beat UNO goalie John Faulkner who was being screened.
Tech got a late power play and pulled goalie Pheonix Copley for a 6-on-4 attacker advantage but couldn't tie the game. The Huskies outshot the Mavericks 15-9 in the third period.
UNO opened the scoring at 4:32 of the first period. Zombo carried the puck down the right wing and waiting for Johnnie Searfoss who was trailing the play. Searfoss fired home the pass for his eighth goal of the year.
The Mavericks stretched their lead at 13:40 when Brian O'Rourke forced a turnover at the UNO blue line. He pushed the puck up to Walters who cruised in and fired a shot past Copley for his team-leading 16th goal of the year.
Tech got on the board with just 15 seconds remaining in the period. Alex Petan kept the puck in the UNO zone at the right wing. He wheeled and fired a shot that ricocheted to a wide-open David Johnstone who knocked the puck home.
The UNO lead grew back to two goals midway through the second period. Good forechecking by Alex Simonson and Joe Krause forced the puck free in the Michigan Tech zone. Sustr gathered the puck and fired a wrist shot past a screened Copley for his seventh goal of the season.
The assists by Simonson and Krause were the first of their collegiate careers.
Faulkner improved to 14-4-2 with a 26-save effort. He is now one win from tying Dan Ellis (53) for most wins by a UNO goalie. Copley dropped to 4-9-1 after making 24 saves.
The two teams finish the four-game season series on Saturday night at 7:07 p.m.