The excitement of finally opening up the WCHA season at home against our longtime rivals was dulled by a 6-1 Bemidji State win on Friday night.
The game seemed to be closer than the score indicated as Bemidji State outshot UAH only 26-23. But when UAH had its lapses, the Beavers — and Markus Gerbrandt in particular — were quick to pounce.
Gerbrant had a hat trick, including two goals 16 seconds apart early in the third period to put the game away.
The game started with the Chargers getting the most consistent pressure, and it finally paid off with 4:11 to go in the first period on Alex Allan’s power-play goal. Doug Reid got an assist.
But it wasn’t long until BSU took the lead with its first burst of scoring. Gerbrandt tied the game with 2:53 left in the period, and Brendan Harms — on a nice redirect in the slot — scored 38 seconds later.
Cory Ward extended Bemidji State’s lead in the second period with a goal at 12:45. Gerbrandt’s two-goal burst made it 5-1, and Charlie O’Connor finally made it 6-1 with 6:28 to go.
Matt Larose made 20 saves for UAH. Andrew Walsh made 22 saves for BSU.
Kyle Lysaght, who suffered life-threatening injuries in a car accident in Atlanta back in March, handled the ceremonial puck drop before the game.
Game 2 of the series is tonight at the Von Braun Center starting at 7:07 p.m. — Michael Napier