Postgame: Minnesota State-Mankato 5, Minnesota Duluth 4 (OT)

Minnesota State-Mankato won the first of two games this weekend against Minnesota-Duluth 5-4 in overtime on Friday at Amsoil Arena in Duluth. The Mavericks and Bulldogs meet again at 7:07 p.m. Saturday in Mankato.

Here are my thumbs up and thumbs down for the Bulldogs tonight, followed by my three stars.

Thumbs up to the Bulldogs resiliency

I thought UMD sophomore defenseman Carson Soucy said it best after the game, “Anytime you are down 4-1, you almost want to lose hope, but we did a good job of not quitting.”

The Bulldogs fell behind 4-1 after having to kill a 6 minute, 27 second Mavericks power play stemming from a major to Kyle Osterberg and minor in the final 30 seconds to Adam Krause. UMD got a shorthanded goal to start, but gave up two power play goals before getting back to full strength. The game seemed over at that point, but UMD came back with two goals before the second intermission to breath life into a dead Amsoil Arena.

Thumbs down to the Bulldogs’ power play

UMD finished 1 for 7 on the man advantage with eight shots and a goal, but that’s not why the special teams unit gets the thumbs down. Three times UMD killed its own power play by taking a penalty. UMD head coach Scott Sandelin brought up his displeasure with the power-play killing penalties after the game. I can’t imagine much frustrating a coach more.

“I thought at times we shot ourselves in the foot,” Sandelin said. “You try and get some momentum on the power play and we take a penalty.”

Matt’s Three Stars
3. UMD freshman forward Karson Kuhlman: Game-tying goal with 3:50 to play to force overtime.
2. MSU freshman forward Zeb Knutson: Credited with the game-winning goal for MSU in overtime
1. MSU junior goaltender Stephon Williams: Stopped 34 of the 38 shots he faced for the win. If he saw the puck, he stopped it with MSU’s four goals all sneaking through some sort of traffic. Williams stopped anything on his doorstep, no matter how close or hard.