|2nd||15:21||WMU||1-0||EV GW||Nolan LaPorte (5)||Griffen Molino/10, Chris Dienes/7|
|Shots on Goal||1st||2nd||3rd||SOG|
|Team Stats and Records||PP||PIM||SHGF|
|Western Michigan (7-10-1)||0/2||3/6||0|
|Bowling Green (11-4-5)||0/3||2/4||0|
|Western Michigan Goaltending||MIN||GA||1||2||3||Saves|
|Lukas Hafner (W, 5-5-1)||60:00||0||8||11||16||35|
|Bowling Green Goaltending||MIN||GA||1||2||3||Saves|
|Tommy Burke (L, 3-2-0)||36:06||1||0||13||1||14|
Toledo, Ohio - The No. 12 Bowling Green State University hockey team saw its nine-game unbeaten streak come to an end Wednesday as the Falcons fell to the Western Michigan Broncos 1-0. The game, held at the Huntington Center in Toledo, marked just the second time BGSU has been shut out during the 2015-16 season.
The star of the contest was WMU goaltender Lukas Hafner. The Falcons peppered Hafner with 35 shots, including 16 during a furious third period barrage, but he stopped them all. In two games against BGSU this season, Hafner saved 60 of 61 shots.
The Broncos' defense blocked another 19 of Bowling Green's shot attempts, and a third period blast from John Schilling went off the post. In total, the Falcons tried to find the net 67 times, nearly double the 37 by WMU.
"We had a tough day around their net," BGSU Head Coach Chris Bergeron said. "Hafner was really good, but we had opportunities to score and we didn't."
Western Michigan controlled the action early in the first period and posted six shots on goal during the first 6:05 of the game, with each saved by Chris Nell. The Falcons asserted themselves on offense for the remainder of the period and eventually evened the shot total at 8-8 as the first 20 minutes ended with no score.
Nell was involved in a collision late in the first period and remained in the game after being checked for an injury. However, he had to leave the game just 2:09 into the second period after being involved in another collision at the net. Tommy Burke replaced Nell for the rest of the game.
Three penalties, two by BGSU and one by WMU, were killed off during the first 10 minutes of the second period. Both teams failed to take any shots on goal during those power play opportunities, and the game remained even at 0-0.
The Broncos finally broke the ice with a goal at the 15:21 mark of the second period. Nolan LaPorte took a shot that Burke saved. The puck went behind the net, where LaPorte took it again from Burke's right just behind the goal line and bounced the puck off of the Falcon netminder for a 1-0 lead. Assists went to Griffen Molino and Chris Dienes.
At the beginning of the third period, the Broncos held a 23-19 edge in shots on goal but would manage just one during the final 20 minutes. In addition to their 16 shots against Hafner in the third period, Bowling Green had two power play chances, including a 5-on-3 that lasted 31 seconds. Despite the constant opportunities at the net, the final horn sounded with the Falcons on the wrong end of a 1-0 decision.
Nell saved all nine of the shots he faced prior to his departure from the game. Burke made 14 saves on 15 attempts by WMU. Tyler Spezia and Mark Friedman led the Falcons with five shots on goal.
BGSU drops to 11-4-5 overall and remains 8-2-4 in WCHA play. The Falcons return to the BGSU Ice Arena for a pair of games this weekend against the Clarkson Golden Knights. Saturday's game will begin at 7:07 pm while Sunday's contest will start at 5:07 pm.