FAIRBANKS, Alaska – Michigan Tech remained unbeaten in its last six games with a 4-1 victory at Alaska Friday (Nov. 25) night from the Carlson Center. The Huskies scored four unanswered goals after the Nanooks opened scoring and improved to 8-6-3 overall and 7-2-2-1 in the WCHA.
"I'm so proud of the guys," Tech assistant coach Joe Shawhan said. "We only gave up 11 shots through the last two periods against a very good hockey team. Our penalty kill did an outstanding job and our power play got a goal. It was just a gutsy team effort."
Tyler Heinonen made it 1-1 38 seconds after UAF took the lead. Chris Gerrie fed Heinonen up the middle who went in alone on goaltender Jesse Jenks and made a move to bury his fourth of the season. Alex Smith also assisted on the play.
Jake Lucchini scored the go-ahead goal 4:38 into the second period with his fifth of the season and first even strength tally. Gavin Gould stole the puck and set up Lucchini for a one-timer and the 12th of his career.
Joel L'Esperance made it a 3-1 game, extending his point streak to seven games 13:46 into the second. Mark Auk kept the puck in the zone on the power play, feeding down to Lucchini who went cross-ice to L'Esperance for his eighth point (5G, 3A) in the last seven games.
UAF (4-8-1, 3-5-1-1 WCHA) buzzed in the third period, even pulling the goaltender with 3:40 left to add the extra attacker.
Tech goaltender Angus Redmond had to stand tall, poke-checking a Nanook forward who went in alone on Redmond on a 5-on-3 in the third. He also stoned Josh Erickson on a breakaway late in the second period and had three saves in 58 seconds of 5-on-3 earlier in the frame. Redmond finished with 22 saves to pick up his seventh win of the season.
"Angus made some key saves when he needed to," assistant coach Gary Shuchuk said. "That poke check on the 5-on-3 was big time. He's been the best player on the ice. Guys are confident right now because they can make a mistake and know that they have a guy back there that can make a save."
Chris Leibinger put the game away for the Huskies with an empty net tally with 35 seconds left in the game. For Leibinger, it was his fifth of the season and ninth of his career with the assist going to Reid Sturos.
Ross Heidt opened the game's scoring with a power play goal 9:13 into the game to give the home team the 1-0 lead.
The two teams were whistled for 18 total penalties. There were eight calls in the second period alone, which took 55 minutes to play. There were also a total of 65 faceoffs in the game.
Tech was 1-for-7 on the power play and 9-for-10 on the penalty kill. The Huskies outshot the Nanooks 31-23.
The two teams wrap-up their only meeting of the season on Saturday (Nov. 26) at 11:07 p.m. Eastern.
"They'll come out and play hard tomorrow," Shawhan added. "We need to watch some film and shore some things up on our end."