St. Cloud, Minn. - The Minnesota State University, Mankato Mavericks came from behind on Saturday, Feb. 12, to defeat the St. Cloud State University women's hockey squad by a score of 3-1 on Senior Day in the National Hockey Center.
The Huskies cracked the scoreboard first at the 6:50 mark of the initial period. St. Cloud State's sophomore defender Lisa Martinson (St. Louis Park) gathered up the puck just inside the blue line and made a great move around a Maverick defender to storm the slot. With traffic in front, Martinson sent a wrister to the far side of the MSU net past Minnesota State's junior netminder Alli Altmann for her second tally of the season and sixth of her young collegiate career.
SCSU's Haylea Schmid (Oak Grove) and Brittany Toor (Hartland, MIch.) were awarded the helpers on the even-strength score.
The pesky Mavericks continued to pressure the Husky defense and caught a break late in the first period to knot the score at 1-1. On the power play, MSU's Kari Lundberg fired off a shot directly in front of the Husky net. SCSU's senior goaltender Ashley Nixon (Blaine) was there to make the initial save, but Minnesota State's Lisa Edman was waiting on the doorstep to bang home the rebound at 18:08. Emmi Leinonen tabbed the second assist on the MSU goal.
After one period of play the Huskies were out-shooting the Mavericks 14-7.
Minnesota State's penalty kill unit came up big in the second frame. The Huskies power play squad turned the puck over on the Mavericks blue line. MSU's Lauren Smith gathered up the puck and stormed into the Husky zone on a two-on-one along with teammate Kathleen Rogan. Smith sent a great pass across the SCSU slot to find Rogan on the right side. Rogan blasted a wrist shot through the far uprights past Nixon for the eventual game-winning score at 5:20. The short-handed tally was the 12th goal of the season for Rogan as Smith garnered the lone assist.
Trailing by just one goal, the St. Cloud State bench stayed juiced as the announced crowd of 477 hockey fans in the National Hockey Center witnessed not a single Husky player sitting down. The Huskies managed to fire off seven shots in the final frame, however the nail in the coffin came late in the third stint when MSU's Tracy McCann charted her fifth goal of the season at 15:25 to give the Mavericks the commanding 3-1 lead.
SCSU's Nixon, who was named the game's Third Star, backstopped the Huskies with 29 saves in her final game at the National Hockey Center. MSU's Altmann improved to 4-17-2 on the season, stopping 30 of SCSU's 31 shots this afternoon in the victory.
The Huskies will hit the road next weekend for their last regular season series of the 2010-11 season on Friday and Saturday, Feb. 18-19, at the University of Minnesota Duluth.
Of note, St. Cloud State University honored its four seniors in Alecia Anderson, Courtney Josefson, Diana Karouzos and Ashley Nixon before the game this afternoon for Senior Day. A special thank you to SCSU women's hockey administrative assistant Dean Thibodeau for creating the spectacular senior highlight video and to St. Cloud Floral for providing the seniors with flowers for the introductions prior to the hockey game.