College men's hockey: Bemidji State dominates third period to beat UMD

BEMIDJI, Minn. -- A full 60 minutes continues to evade the young Minnesota Duluth Bulldogs. Bemidji State, playing its season opener, erupted for four goals in the third period to upset fifth-ranked UMD 5-2 in nonconference play Friday night at S...

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Bemidji State senior Myles Fitzgerald (26) tries to skate past Minnesota Duluth's Scott Perunovich (7) during Friday's game at Sanford Center in Bemidji, Minn. The Beavers won 5-2. Jordan Shearer / Bemidji Pioneer

BEMIDJI, Minn. - A full 60 minutes continues to evade the young Minnesota Duluth Bulldogs.

Bemidji State, playing its season opener, erupted for four goals in the third period to upset fifth-ranked UMD 5-2 in nonconference play Friday night at Sanford Center. The win gives the Beavers the advantage in the battle for the Blue Ox trophy, which concludes at 7:07 p.m. today at Amsoil Arena.

The game was tied 1-1 after two periods, with the Bulldogs outshooting the Beavers 21-9. Bemidji State (1-0) posted three of its four third-period goals in the opening seven and a half minutes of the final period to jump ahead 4-1 on a UMD team that already had played two regular-season games and an exhibition.

“We were taking it to them all game and then in the third period, we got complacent a little bit,” UMD senior wing Blake Young said. “We’ll bounce back.”

Sophomore wing Adam Brady put the Beavers ahead with his team’s second power-play goal of the night just under four minutes into the third.


From there, things began to snowball as junior defenseman Justin Baudry scored the Beavers’ first even-strength goal of the night just under two minutes after Brady’s tally. Freshman Brendan Harris then picked up his first collegiate goal at the 7:30 mark to make it 4-1.

“We fell a bit on the bench there and the energy wasn’t as high as it needed to be,” UMD assistant captain Parker Mackay said of his team after it fell behind 2-1. “In situations like that, we have to try and find a way to get that momentum back and do whatever it takes. That’s something that’s in the learning process, but we have to learn quickly.”

UMD (1-2) showed in its opener, a 4-3 overtime win over Minnesota, an ability to bounce back from what could be considered back-breaking goals. The Gophers went ahead 3-2 in last Friday’s game 2 1/2 minutes after sophomore wing Riley Tufte tied the game at 2-2. No matter, as 40 seconds later sophomore wing Joey Anderson tied the game at 3-3.

The next night in the Ice Breaker championship, however, Michigan Tech erased a 2-0 UMD lead with three-straight power-play goals en route to a 4-3 victory.

Bulldogs coach Scott Sandelin said Friday’s game felt a lot like the loss last Saturday to the Huskies.

“For 40 minutes, I thought we played a pretty good road game, even for part of the third until they got the second goal,” Sandelin said. “It was eerily similar to the Tech game.

“We lost a little steam after they scored the second goal. They capitalized and moved forward. We took a step back.”

Young gave the Bulldogs a 1-0 lead 7:27 into the game with his first goal of the season and third in 59 career games. Young raced into the Beavers’ zone and put the puck away just as a UMD power play expired.


The Beavers tied the game on the power play nine-plus minutes into the second period with a blast from the point by senior center Gerry Fitzgerald.

“In the second period - only in hockey this happens - we had a win in the period 1-0, but they dictated the play right there,” said Beavers coach Tom Serratore, a native of Coleraine. “We had a lot of turnovers, our puck management wasn’t very good, and again we just were very fortunate to come out of there with a 1-1 tie. And then in the third period, once we got a goal and another goal right there, we had legs, we had a lot more confidence.”

  • Bemidji State senior goaltender Michael Bitzer finished with 27 saves while UMD freshman Hunter Shepard, playing about 60 miles down U.S. Highway 2 from his hometown of Cohasset, stopped 12 of the 16 shots he faced.
  • Superior native Aaron Miller, a 21-year-old freshman wing, start for the Beavers. He is one of four former Minnesota Wilderness players in the game along with Beavers freshman defenseman Tyler Vold, Bulldogs freshman defenseman Louie Roehl and Bulldogs junior forward Billy Exell.

Minn. Duluth 1-0-1-2
Bemidji St. 0-1-4-5
First period - 1. UMD, Blake Young 1 (Louie Roehl, Jarod Hilderman), 7:27. Penalties - MIkey Anderson, UMD (hooking), 1:28; Zach Whitecloud, BSU (holding), 5:26; Young, UMD (hooking), 14:59; Jordan Heller, BSU (hooking), 17:21.
Second period - 2. BSU, Gerry Fitzgerald 1 (Whitecloud, Jay Dickman), 9:10 (pp). Penalties - Louie Roehl, UMD (cross checking), 4:35; Aaron Miller, BSU (high sticking), 4:35; Jarod Hilderman, UMD (interference), 9:04; Justin Beaudry, BSU (holding), 10:19; Riley Tufte, UMD (tripping), 13:51.
Third period - 3. BSU, Adam Brady 1 (Whitecloud, G. Fitzgerald), 3:55 (pp); 4. BSU, Justin Baudry 1 (Hampus Sjodahl), 5:51; 5. BSU, Brendan Harris 1 (Myles Fitzgerald, Dillon Eichstadt), 7:30; 6. UMD, Karson Kuhlman 1 (Mikey Anderson, Nick Swaney) 19:00 (ea); 7. BSU, Leo Fitzgerald 1 (Jordan Heller, Gerry Fitzgerald), 19:51 (en). Penalties - Joey Anderson, UMD (slashing), 3:35.
Shots on goal - UMD 10-11-8-29; BSU 6-3-8-17. Goalies - Hunter Shepard, UMD (16 shots-12 saves); Michael Bitzer, BSU (29-27). Power plays - UMD 0-of-3; BSU 2-of-5. Referees - Bobby Lukkason, Brady Johnson. Linesmen - Matt Ulwelling, Andy Dokken. Att. - 3,112.

Co-host of the Bulldog Insider Podcast and college hockey reporter for the Duluth News Tribune and The Rink Live covering the Minnesota Duluth men's and women's hockey programs.
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