HUNTSVILLE, Ala. – The Michigan Tech hockey team secured five out six possible WCHA points this weekend at Alabama Huntsville, wrapping up the season series with a 4-4 draw Saturday (Jan. 28) from the Von Braun Center. The Huskies picked up the crucial extra point with a marathon shootout as Chris Gerrie finally put one in the back of the net in the ninth round.
"We weren't as ready as we needed to be tonight," Tech coach Mel Pearson said. "Having said that, I give our players a lot of credit that they continued to battle and found a way to get that extra point."
The Huskies trailed in the final stages of the game, pulling goaltender Angus Redmond to add the extra attacker. Jake Lucchini's shot with 11 seconds left found the back of the net to tie it up for the third time on the night, deflecting off a UAH defender. Reid Sturos and Shane Hanna got the assists on Lucchini's team-leading 10th goal of the season.
Hanna, Mitch Reinke, Lucchini, Joel L'Esperance, Jake Jackson, Tyler Heinonen, Mark Auk, and Michael Neville all had attempts in the shootout before Gerrie put the Huskies up and Redmond saved the final Charger attempt to seal it.
"We're getting too tight to the goalie and just throwing things at him and not getting him moving," Pearson said about the shootout. "Chris came in on an angle with some speed and got him moving. We're going to have to get a little more serious practicing the shootout. Those points are important."
The Black and Gold had to climb out of a deficit three times during the game. Down 2-0 entering the second period, Matt Roy scored once in the second and again in the third to knot it up. He had a power play goal at the midpoint of the game assisted by Auk for his fourth of the season and then buried 6:30 into the third from Neville and Hanna.
Brennan Saulnier gave the home team the lead again 4:10 after Roy's equalizer with a power play tally from Kurt Gosselin and Brandon Parker.
Mitch Reinke—who now has a goal in three straight games and five points in the last four games—again tied it up for Tech on the power play 37 seconds later. Hanna and L'Esperance assisted on Reinke's fourth goal of his freshman year.
Matt Salhany scored what looked like the game-winner with 2:16 left on the clock before Lucchini tied it up in the closing moments of the third.
Hans Gorowsky (shorthanded) and Kurt Gosselin (power play) scored the two first period goals for Huntsville.
The Huskies outshot the Chargers 35-23, including 13 in the second and 11 in the third. Redmond finished with 19 saves and stopped all nine shootout attempts by UAH. Jordan Uhelski stopped 31 shots for the home team.
Both teams buried two power play goals as Tech was 2-for-7 and UAH was 2-for-4 on the man advantage.
The Huskies have never lost to the Chargers, improving to 12-0-2 all-time with a 2-0-2 mark this season. The Black and Gold also remained unbeaten in its last nine WCHA games.
Tech is 16-9-7 overall and 13-3-6-3 in the WCHA and stays on the road next weekend (Feb 3-4) for a matchup of the top two WCHA teams at Bemidji State. The Beavers lead the Huskies by four points in the league standings and the two teams split their series in Houghton in December.