Michigan Tech Topped By St. Cloud State In Overtime, 3-2

Senior forward Tanner Kero scored a goal for the Huskies
Prd Time  Team Score Type Scored By Assists
1st 7:18  MTU1-0 EV Tanner Kero (20)Alex Petan/25, Shane Hanna/15
2nd 1:06  STC1-1 PP Kalle Kossila (6)David Morley/12, Ethan Prow/19
3rd 10:54  MTU2-1 EV C.J. Eick (3)Joel L'Esperance/10, Dylan Steman/12
3rd 19:22.7 STC2-2 EV EA Jonny Brodzinski (21)Patrick Russell/15, Joey Benik/23
OT 8:11  STC3-2 EV GW Judd Peterson (4)Joe Rehkamp/13
Scoring 1st 2nd 3rd OT Final
St. Cloud State  01113
Michigan Tech  10102
Shots on Goal 1st 2nd 3rd OT SOG
St. Cloud State  8110221
Michigan Tech  15144538
Team Stats and Records  PP PIM SHGF
St. Cloud State (20-18-1)  1/2 2/4 0
Michigan Tech (29-10-2)  0/1 3/6 0
St. Cloud State Goaltending MIN GA 1 2 3 OT Saves
Charlie Lindgren (W, 19-17-1)66:452 14143536
Empty Net1:260      
Michigan Tech Goaltending MIN GA 1 2 3 OT Saves
Jamie Phillips (L, 28-9-2)68:113 809118

FARGO, N.D. - The No. 5-ranked Michigan Tech hockey team had its season come to an end with a 3-2 overtime loss to No. 13 St. Cloud State in the first round of the NCAA West Regional from Scheels Arena on Friday (March 27).. Tech finished the 2014-15 season with a 29-10-2 record.

Tech led 2-1 in the late stages of the third period before surrendering the lead with 37 seconds left. St. Cloud pulled its goaltender to add the extra attacker and found the back of the net after a scramble at the side of the net.

In the overtime, Tyler Heinonen and Alex Petan had early scoring chances that were steered away by SCSU goaltender Charlie Lindgren.

The game winner was scored 8:11 into the extra session on a 2-on-1 break. Joe Rehkamp's shot was saved byJamie Phillips and Judd Peterson was there to clean up the play and advance the Black and Red to Saturday's regional championship game.

"It was a real good college hockey game," Tech coach Mel Pearson said. "I'm very proud of my team for the effort they put in. We carried the play for most of it until the third period. We missed a couple wide-open nets and hats off to St. Cloud for making the plays to win the game.

"I'm extremely proud of this team for all they've accomplished and for putting Michigan Tech back on the college hockey map."

Tanner Kero opened the game's scoring 7:18 into the first with his 20th of the year. Petan and Kero entered the zone together. Petan's initial shot was saved, but Kero was at the doorstep as he calmly backhanded the puck into the net. Shane Hanna added the secondary assist.

Tech outshot SCSU 15-8 in the opening frame and had numerous other scoring chances. Blake Hietala blasted a shot high moments after the goal. Alex Gillies redirected a Riley Sweeney shot that was saved, and Joel L'Esperance and Dylan Steman went in on a 2-on-1 but couldn't settle a bouncing puck.

Phillips preserved the lead with a monster save with just over a minute left before intermission.

St. Cloud began the second period on the power play. The nation's fifth-best power play capitalized 66 seconds into the second with a goal off the stick of Kalle Kossila.

Tech settled into the midle period, outshooting SCSU 14-1 in the frame. Hanna had a one-timer go just wide and Heinonen had a pair of chances from line mate David Johnstone that Lindgren had to stand tall for.

The best chance in the second came on a delayed feed from Steman to L'Esperance with 6:10 left. Lindgren was again there for the save and the rebound chance went wide.

SCSU found the back of the net again late in the second, but the play was reviewed and called back after it was determined that the puck was brought into the zone offside.

Tech killed off a penalty early in the third period and then took its second lead of the game at the 10:54 mark. Steman fed the puck up to L'Esperance. The sophomore forward carried the puck towards the net, paused and spun around making a backhanded pass to a wide-open CJ Eick. All Eick had to do was tap it in for his third of the year and a 2-1 lead.

SCSU had numerous chances late in the third. With a loose puck in front of the Tech net, Phillips received some help from his teammates at the 5:35 mark as a group of players in gold jerseys jumped on the puck for a whistle. Phillips was tested two minutes later on a redirect that he steered away.

Tech had three golden opportunities to seal the win in the late stages. Johnstone rang a shot off the post after creating a turnover out front of the St. Cloud net.

Petan and David Morley were both shipped to the box with 2:18 left, creating a 4-on-4 situation. SCSU pulled Lindgren early for the 5-on-4 advantage.

Both Steman and Sweeney had shots at the open net before the equalizer was scored but both shots went wide and were called for icing.

Final shots on goal were 38-21 in favor of Tech. Lindgren had 36 saves while Phillips had 18..

The game marked the end of careers for seniors Jimmy Davis (0-3=3), Blake Hietala (16-19=35), David Johnstone (36-67=103), Tanner Kero (55-56=111), Blake Pietila(46-60=106), and Riley Sweeney (4-34=38).

"We always say that the goal is to leave the program in better shape than when they found it," added Pearson. "These seniors have done a great job. I wish we could've found a way to win it for them and kept playing.

"I just want to thank all of our supporters back at Michigan Tech and the fans and alumni from all over the world. It's been incredible."

The magical 2014-15 season consisted of a 10-0 start (the best in program history), a No. 1 national ranking for the first time since 1976, and a birth into the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 1981.

GAME NOTES: Kero had 55 career goals...Eick has 11 career goals...Tech is 13-10 all-time in the NCAA Tournament...Tech is 1-3 in NCAA Tournament overtime games...The 29 wins were the most since 1980-81 (29-14-1).