Two-Man Advantage Proves Costly
MOORHEAD, Minn. (1/7/12)— Concordia gave up a pair of goals on a 5-on-3 situation at the start of the second period and lost 3-1 to No.5-ranked UW-River Falls on Saturday. The two-goal binge proved to be the difference in the Cobbers' second straight loss to start the New Year.
Concordia (7-5-3) improved their overall play from the first drop of the puck on Saturday after falling to UW-Eau Claire 3-0 on Friday in their first game back from the extended Christmas break. The Cobbers matched the nationally ranked Falcons in every period and traded quality chances throughout the game.
The teams skated through a scoreless first period with the Cobbers holding a 12-7 edge in shots on goal in the opening 20 minutes. CC continued to have the upper hand until the fateful stretch in the first 6:30 of the second period. Concordia took a pair of penalties just :38 apart starting at the 4:05 mark and River Falls capitalized only :15 into the two-man advantage. George Malliaras scored at 4:48 and then Jason Yuel added the second at 6:21.
The game returned to the pace of the first period for the rest of the second frame and CC was never able to get on the board until the start of the third period. Cobber senior Marc Harrie put the fans on the edge of their seats for the rest of the game when he scored Concordia's first goal of the weekend at the 5:08 mark of the final period. Jared Collen and Chris Williamson were awarded the assists on Harrie's first goal of the year.
The game went back and forth for the final period until the Falcons finished off the scoring with an empty net goal at 19:55.
UW-River Falls (11-2-2) held a slight 31-28 edge in shots on goal for the game. CC goalie Chris Nemonitis made 28 saves while Scott Lewan stopped 27 shots to earn his 11th win for the Falcons.
One of the keys to the game was the power play. The two goals River Falls scored were made even more significant by the fact that Concordia was unable to score on their five power play attempts.
Concordia will now start the drive for their second straight MIAC playoff spot when they host Augsburg on Friday and Saturday, Jan. 13-14. Both games will be played at the Moorhead Sports Center.