Bowling Green Skates to 2-2 Tie with Minnesota State
Senior forward Ben Murphy scores game-tying goal for Falcons

Senior forward Ben Murphy scores game-tying goal for Falcons
Prd Time  Team Score Type Scored By Assists
1st 4:40  MNS1-0 EV Zeb Knutson (3)Bryce Gervais/3, Alec Vanko/2
1st 14:42  MNS2-0 PP Michael Huntebrinker (1)Jon Jutzi/3, Teddy Blueger/9
3rd 16:18  BGS1-2 EV Brandon Hawkins (2)Brett D'Andrea/1, Stephen Baylis/1
3rd 19:53  BGS2-2 SH EA GT Ben Murphy (2)Matt Pohlkamp/7, Connor McDonald/3
Scoring 1st 2nd 3rd OT Final
Minnesota State  20002
Bowling Green  00202
Shots on Goal 1st 2nd 3rd OT SOG
Minnesota State  1688335
Bowling Green  668121
Team Stats and Records  PP PIM SHGF
Minnesota State (8-6-3)  1/7 4/11 0
Bowling Green (9-3-4)  0/4 7/25 1
Minnesota State Goaltending MIN GA 1 2 3 OT Saves
Jason Pawloski (T, 5-0-3)65:002 666119
Bowling Green Goaltending MIN GA 1 2 3 OT Saves
Chris Nell (T, 6-2-4)64:192 1488333
Empty Net0:410      

Apparently, last Saturday's dramatics weren't enough for the No. 14 Bowling Green State University hockey team. The team came back to the table for more tonight. Ben Murphy scored with just 6.7 seconds left in regulation to tie the game, and BGSU held on in overtime for a 2-2 draw with the WCHA leader and defending conference champion Minnesota State Mavericks.

The tie extended Bowling Green's unbeaten streak at home to 12 games, the longest active streak in the nation. The Falcons are 5-0-3 at home this season and 15-3-4 in their last 22 games at the Madhouse on Mercer.

"Minnesota State showed why they are champions," BGSU head coach Chris Bergeron said. "They came tonight ready for a battle and they took it to us in the first period. We weren't ready in the first period. We'll pick ourselves up and we'll get ready."

The Falcons are turning the last-second goal into an art form. Murphy's goal was the third time in the last two games that BGSU has scored in the final 10 seconds of a period. Last Saturday, Mark Cooper scored with one second left in the first period, then the Falcons won on a Mitch McLain short-handed goal with 5.3 seconds left in overtime.

BGSU struggled mightily overall in the first period and on offense for much of the game.

In the first period, the Falcons were held without a shot on goal until the final few minutes of the period, while the defense surrendered 16 to MSU. The Mavericks made BGSU pay early. Just 4:40 into the contest, Zeb Knutson took a feed from Bryce Gervais and buried it past Chris Nell for a 1-0 lead.

At the 10:36 mark, the Falcons lost Pierre-Luc Mercier to a game misconduct. BGSU's penalty kill unit held for over four minutes, but Michael Huntebrinker scored with 54 seconds left in the power play for a 2-0 lead.

The Bowling Green defense settled down and allowed only 19 shots at Nell for the remainder of the game, all of which he saved. However, the offense remained in a funk. It managed only six shots during the second frame despite having seven minutes of power play time. It had only three more during the first 15 minutes of the third.

BGSU's offense finally awoke for the final five minutes. Brandon Hawkins attacked MSU goaltender Jason Pawloski but was denied. Stephen Baylis came back with a shot that went wide, then Brett D'Andrea found the puck and fed it to Hawkins just outside the crease. Hawkins sent it past Pawloski to cut the lead to 2-1 with 3:42 remaining in the game.

Just 14 seconds later, BGSU went on the power play when Brad McClure was called for holding. That power play lasted just 35 seconds, as Sean Walker went to the box for tripping. Then, with 1:05 remaining, the Falcons were called for too many men on the ice.

Suddenly, the Falcons were a man down. They went empty net to provide an extra attacker for 5-on-5 hockey in the final minute. With just 6.7 seconds left in the game, Murphy snuck the puck past Pawloski from the left circle and tied the game 2-2. Technically, it was the second short-handed score for the Falcons in the past two games. (CLICK HERE to listen to the radio call)

"Instinct," Murphy said. "That's where the extra work takes over. As Matt Pohlkamp got the puck, I thought that if this goes to me, gets on my stick and goes in, I don't know what I'm going to do. Somehow it happened."

The teams combined for just four shots in a tense but offensively quiet overtime period as the game ended in a 2-2 draw.

This was not Murphy's first time performing last-minute heroics at the BGSU Ice Arena. On Jan. 10, 2015 against Alaska, Murphy scored twice in the final minute of the third period (19:14 and 19:38) to force a 4-4 draw.

Bowling Green is now 9-3-4 overall and 6-2-3 in WCHA play. The Falcons remain in third place with 15 points. Minnesota State is 8-6-3 overall (7-1-3 WCHA) and is alone in first place with 17 points. The two teams will meet again tomorrow night at 7:07pm at the BGSU Ice Arena.