GRAND FORKS, N.D. (Ralph Engelstad Arena) - The University of North Dakota posted back-to-back goals just 55 seconds apart early in the first period and the Bemidji State University men's ice hockey team could recover, falling 4-2 in its final nonconference contest of the 2013-14 season Saturday at Ralph Engelstad Arena.
Cory Ward (F, So., Las Vegas, Nev.) logged his team-leading 14th goal of the season and Markus Gerbrandt (F, So., Edmonton, Alberta) added a power-play goal late, but offensive opportunities were few and far between as the Beavers were out shot 33-17 in the game.
The game concludes the nonconference portion of BSU schedule. Now 0-5-3 outside league play, the Beavers overall mark sits at 7-12-7.
North Dakota opened the game with a flurry, netting a pair of goals in the first 7:22 of play. Connor Gaarder got the UND scoring started at the 6:27 mark of the first period redirecting a pass from Stephane Pattyn at the top of the crease. Andrew Panzarella followed at the 7:22 mark ripping his first collegiate goal past BSU goaltender Andrew Walsh (Jr., Dawson Creek, British Columbia).
Trailing 2-0, Cory Ward (F, So., Las Vegas, Nev.) and the Beavers would not back down. The Beavers' top scorer netted his 14th goal of the season at the 12:37 mark. On a tremendous individual effort, Ward picked off a UND pass in the neutral zone, dropped it on the ice and fired a laser from the left face-off circle top shelf.
Despite being outshot 15-4 in the first, BSU headed to the locker room for the first intermission trialing just 2-1.
Aided by three power-play opportunities in the second period, the Beavers outshot UND 10-9, however North Dakota extended its lead to 4-2.
Derek Rodwell sniped a shot from the left face-off circle to put UND up 3-1 just 1:13 into the second frame. Michael Parks followed suit netting a 4-on-4, wrap around goal at the 6:58 mark to stretch the host's advantage to 4-1.
The Beavers would again claw their way back into the game with just less than seven minutes to play in the second (13:09). With Pattyn in the penalty box for hooking, Markus Gerbrandt (F, So., Edmonton, Alberta) found the puck sitting at the top of the crease and slithered though a scrum to tap in his 12th goal of the season. Ruslan Pedan (D, Fr., Moscow, Russia) and Matt Prapavessis (D, Jr., Oakville, Ontario) were each credited with assists on the scoring play.
The teams combined for just 12 shots in the third period as play came to a halt with North Dakota taking the game and the series win, 4-2.
Walsh finished the night with 29 saves in 58:15 between the pipes. The junior falls to 5-10-4 on the season.
Bemidji State (7-12-7) remains on the road, but returns to Western Collegiate Hockey Association play Jan. 24-25. The Beavers travel to Fairbanks, Alaska for a two-game set with the Nanooks. Opening face of is set for 10:07 p.m. (CST) each night.