Northern Michigan, Lake Superior State Skate to 2-2 Draw

Freshman forward Diego Cuglietta scored the game-tying goal for the Lakers
Prd Time  Team Score Type Scored By Assists
1st 3:16  NMU1-0 EV Zach Diamantoni (4)John Siemer/6
1st 6:03  NMU2-0 PP Darren Nowick (13)Dominik Shine/15, Gerard Hanson/18
1st 15:34  LSS1-2 PP Gage Torrel (8)Anthony Nellis/11, Owen Headrick/7
3rd 4:53  LSS2-2 EV GT Diego Cuglietta (5)C.J. Hayes/4, Gage Torrel/10
Scoring 1st 2nd 3rd OT Final
Northern Michigan  20002
Lake Superior State  10102
Shots on Goal 1st 2nd 3rd OT SOG
Northern Michigan  11610229
Lake Superior State  41310633
Team Stats and Records  PP PIM SHGF
Northern Michigan (15-12-7)  1/2 5/10 0
Lake Superior State (12-19-5)  1/5 3/14 0
Northern Michigan Goaltending MIN GA 1 2 3 OT Saves
Mathias Dahlström (T, 7-1-1)64:542 3139631
Empty Net0:060      
Lake Superior State Goaltending MIN GA 1 2 3 OT Saves
Gordon Defiel (T, 9-11-4)64:372 9610227
Empty Net0:230      

SAULT STE. MARIE - After falling behind 2-0 within seven minutes to Saturday's Western Collegiate Hockey Association series finale, Lake Superior State rallied to score a pair of goals and earn a 2-2 tie against Upper Peninsula rivals Northern Michigan. The Lakers (12-19-5, 9-12-5 WCHA) secured the rivalry's ultimate prize as well, the 23rd presentation of the Father Cappo Cup.

The cup, first awarded in 1991 and named after Monsignor Louis Cappo, has been a main-stay in the rivalry since the 1994-95 season with the Wildcats (15-12-7, 12-9-5 WCHA) earning the trophy a series-best 14 times. The trophy is awarded to the overall series winner and goes to a total-goal tie-breaker if the teams finish the series tied.

LSSU won their ninth Cappo Cup title in the rivalry history by edging the Wildcats 2-1-1 in four games against each other this season. The Lakers also finished with a 12-9 goal advantage.

Zach Diamontoni put the Wildcats on the board early with an even-strength goal just 3:16 into the action on Saturday night. Less than three minutes later, the Wildcats struck again with a power-play tally by Darren Nowick to put NMU up 2-0.

Facing the potential of a series comeback and ultimately a loss on senior night, the Lakers found their stride late in the first period and were able to cut the 'Cats lead in half with less than five minute remaining in the opening period.

Freshman Gage Torrel (8-10--18) scored the power-play goal to cut the Wildcats lead in half with 4:26 remaining in the first frame. Fellow freshmen Anthony Nellis (3-11--14) and Owen Headrick (4-7--11) added the assists on Torrel's tally.

The score remained 2-1 through the rest of the first period and throughout the entirety of the second period.

With a spark offensively in the final period of regulation the Lakers eventually mounted the comeback and tied the game at 2-2 with 15:07 left in regulation.

Diego Cuglietta's (5-5--10) fifth goal of the season knotted the game and eventually produce the final score. The game-tying tally was assisted by C.J. Hayes (3-4--7) and Torrel, who added his second point of the night and third of this weekend's series.

Neither team could find the winning goal through the rest of third period or overtime. LSSU combined to out-shoot NMU 16-12 in the third period and overtime, while also racking up a 33-29 overall lead in shots to end the game.

Sophomore goaltender Gordon Defiel rebounded nicely after the two early strikes by NMU to finish with 27 saves in net. On the other end of the ice, Mathias Dahlstrom produced 31 saves for the Wildcats.

On a night the Lakers dedicated to their six seniors, five of which were in the lineup for their final game inside Taffy Abel Arena, the freshman class totaled all of the LSSU points offensively to honor their older teammates. The only senior unable to play in Saturday's home finale was defenseman Zach Loesch (1-0--1) whose season was cut short due to injury.

The tie gives the Lakers three points on the weekend against a Wildcat team that entered the series with four wins in their previous five games.

The Lakers close out the regular season next weekend on the road against Ferris State on March 4-5.