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Huskies Shutout No. 20 Minnesota State Saturday

HOUGHTON, Mich. – The Michigan Tech hockey team scored two goals in each of the final two periods, shutting out No. 20 Minnesota State 4-0 on Saturday (Jan. 21) at the John MacInnes Student Ice Arena. Alex Gillies scored twice and goaltender Angus Redmond stopped all 22 shots for his third career shutout.

"We got stronger as the game went on," Tech coach Mel Pearson said. "Our third period was a good period, having to kill off a penalty and then putting them away with two goals. We're getting a lot of contributions from a lot of different players. It was a total team effort and a good victory for us."

Gillies buried his third of the season 6:11 into the second period on the power play. Gavin Gould carried the puck into the zone with speed. When he got to the goal line he dropped it back to Gillies for a one-timer. Reid Sturos drew the penalty moments earlier when he was hooked at the side of the net after a great scoring chance.

"The first goal was a big goal," Pearson said. "Alex got to a good area, and Gavin made a good play to set him up. Alex is getting back into game shape, and we're looking for him to take another step forward to help with the depth we're looking for."

Mitch Reinke added to the lead with his second of the season on a long wrist shot 1:37 later. Michael Neville assisted on the goal, as he was being pressured down on the sidewall and fed it cross-ice to a wide-open Reinke near the blue line. Alex Smith also assisted on the play.

Almost five minutes into the third period, Gillies found some time and space in front of Maverick goaltender Aaron Nelson and sniped a shot over his glove to make it 3-0. Smith set him up on the play with Thomas Beretta also assisting.

"It was a great play by Thomas and Alex to get it in the zone," added Gillies. "Alex fed me a good pass, and the goalie came out a little, and I saw some room there. I got lucky I guess."

Chris Gerrie then found the back of the net for the third game in a row, taking advantage of an empty Minnesota State net. He created a turnover in the corner with two Mavericks deep in the zone and slipped the puck in with 3:22 left in the game.

Redmond stopped eight shots in the first period and seven in both the second and third. He also had shutouts against Northern Michigan (Oct. 28) in his first career start and against Michigan (Dec. 29) in the GLI semifinal.

Tech outshot MSU 31-22. Nelson finished with 27 saves for the visitors.

"Every point matters at this point in the season, so the three points are huge," said Gillies. "It's always a good matchup against them, they're a great team, and it's definitely a good feeling to beat them."

Saturday was Youth Hockey Night and Skate with the Huskies after the game. The Huskies also welcomed Ethan Hainault into the starting lineup as part of his Make-A-Wish.

The Huskies are 15-9-6 overall and 12-3-5-2 in the WCHA. They head back on the road next weekend (Jan. 27-28), making the long trip to Alabama Huntsville.

"They're a hardworking team and they're in every game," added Pearson. "It's going to be a long trip, but we look forward to it. Every weekend is so important, and every point is so critical in this league."

Huntsville is 7-17-2 on the season and 7-11-2 in the WCHA. Tech defeated the Chargers 7-3 on October 14 in Houghton and the two teams tied (1-1) the next night with the Huskies earning the extra WCHA point in the 3-on-3 overtime.

Tech gained one point on Bemidji State in the WCHA standings this weekend and currently trails the first place Beavers by nine points.