Men’s hockey falls to Michigan Tech in overtime

Nick Bjugstad scored two more goals Friday night.

Dane Mizutani

No. 2 Minnesota (13-5-1, 10-3-0 WCHA) fell to Michigan Tech in an overtime thriller Friday night at Mariucci Arena.

The Gophers dictated the tempo for a majority of the game, but Brett Olson and the Huskies had the last laugh.

Olson controlled a pass off the boards early in overtime and raced into the Gophers zone. He fought off defenseman Seth Helgeson and slid in a puck through goaltender Kent PattersonâÄôs five-hole to give Michigan Tech a 3-2 victory.

The Gophers are now tied with Minnesota-Duluth atop the WCHA following the loss and UMDâÄôs tie against Wisconsin.  

MinnesotaâÄôs fourth line of Tom Serratore, Travis Boyd, and Nick Larson came out hot in the first period to give the Gophers momentum early.

In total, they accounted for four of the teamâÄôs 10 shots in the period, but didnâÄôt find the back of the net.

Instead, it was defenseman Mark Alt who put the Gophers on the board first.

Alt fired a wrist shot from the point that deflected off of Michigan Tech defenseman Patrick McCadden and trickled past goaltender Josh Robinson. It was AltâÄôs third goal of the season and put Minnesota ahead 1-0.

The Gophers dominated the puck possession in the first period, but a fluky goal for the Huskies evened the score.

Blake Pietila controlled the puck behind the net and lazily centered a pass that went off of Travis Boyd to beat goaltender Kent Patterson.

It was the freshmanâÄôs sixth goal of the season and knotted the score at 1-1. 

Minnesota outshot Michigan Tech (9-7-1, 6-6-1 WCHA) 14-5 in the second period and continued to control the game, but was unable to break the tie.

The Gophers had two had two power plays in the period, but squandered both chances.

Robinson was peppered with shots on the power play, but did not allow a goal to preserve the score at 1-1 entering the third period.

Michigan Tech opened the third period on a power play after an Erik HaulaâÄôs interference call from the second carried over to the start of the third. The Huskies wasted no time capitalizing.

Steven Seigo fired a shot from the point that deflected off a Gophers defender and beat Patterson five-hole to give Michigan Tech the lead.

It was still early in the period, though and six minutes later Helgeson got the crowd back into it.

Off a faceoff in the Huskies zone, Helgeson took a pass from Alt and fluttered a wrist shot over the right shoulder of Robinson to tie the score at 2-2.

Both the Gophers and Huskies had breakaway chances later in the period, but Patterson and Robinson held serve and the game went into overtime.

In the extra frame, Olson scored on the first and only shot 33 seconds into overtime and the Huskies walked away with the win.

Minnesota will look to earn a series split Saturday at Mariucci Arena.