BEMIDJI, Minn. – The No. 20-ranked Michigan Tech hockey team lost 3-0 at Bemidji State Saturday (Feb. 4). The Beavers scored a goal in each period and goaltender Michael Bitzer steered away 27 Huskies' shots.
"They're a tough team to play against when they get the lead, and we saw that all night," Tech coach Mel Pearson said. "They scored on their opportunities, and we couldn't score on ours. We just couldn't get anything going offensively.
"There's still a lot to play for. We had a frustrating result last night and that carried over into tonight. We have to learn to play in these tough environments, and hopefully we get another chance to come back here in the playoffs."
BSU (18-11-3, 18-4-2-2 WCHA) scored 60 seconds into the game on a goal by Kyle Bauman.
The Beavers added to the lead at the 16:17 mark of the second when Justin Baudry found the back of the net.
Cliff Watson had Tech's best scoring chance in the second. Shane Hanna stepped out of the penalty box and fed Watson, streaking to the net. Watson was alone in front of the Bemidji crease but his backhanded shot went wide.
Later in the period, Hanna and Matt Roy took long shots from the blue line that got through heavy traffic to Bitzer, but he was there for the save both times.
Myles Fitzgerald scored the third-period goal 5:56 into the final frame.
Tech (16-11-7, 13-5-6-3 WCHA) had a power play with 5:27 left in the third. Bitzer gloved down Joel L'Esperance's chance, and the home team held on for their fifth shutout of the season.
"Bitzer made some big saves," added Pearson. "He found the puck and battled hard all night. He was excellent and probably the first star."
The Huskies outshot the Beavers 27-18. Angus Redmond had 15 saves for the Huskies
"It's going to be nice to get a good week of practice in before next weekend," Pearson said. "We have to be careful with our injury situation, but we'll be able to get after it a little more this week."
The Huskies return home for the annual Winter Carnival series, hosting Ferris State at 7:07 p.m. Friday and 5:07 p.m. Saturday. Limited tickets are still available by calling the SDC Ticket Office at 906-487-2073 or visiting BuyHuskiesTickets.com.
"We always enjoy Winter Carnival," said Pearson. "The building will be electric. We've played extremely well at home this season, and we'll be ready to go.
"It'll be nice to be in the Copper Country for the next three weeks after clinching home ice last night. We need to get our team ready to make a push in the playoffs."