Two games. Two rare leads. Two more losses. Two more heartbreaks.
UAH had a one-goal lead for the second straight night, but, just like Friday, lost by one goal. On Saturday, it was a 3-2 Lake Superior State victory.
It was also another great goaltending performance that kept the Chargers in the game. Carmine Guerriero made 36 saves, following up Matt Larose’s 42-save performance on Friday. Lake Superior outshot UAH 39-20 on this night.
As Geof stated in yesterday’s recap, this young team will learn how to win in these situations. But for now, it hurts.
Lake Superior controlled the play early, and took a 1-0 lead six minutes in on a goal by Ian Mitchell from the left circle.
But after a Mitchell Nardi hooking penalty at 9:23, the bulk of the scoring chances went to the Chargers. UAH didn’t convert on the power play, but the increased pressure continued afterward. It finally paid off near the end of the period, when on a 2-on-1 break, Jeff Vanderlugt buried a shot past LSSU goalie Kevin Kapalka with 28 seconds left to tie the game. It was Vanderlugt’s fourth goal of the season, assisted by Doug Reid’s fifth assist.
UAH took a 2-1 lead early in the second. During a 4-on-4 situation, Matt Salhany stole the puck, went on a breakaway, faked and beat Kapalka for his fifth goal of the season. Brian Garber, who was broadcasting the game on WCHA TV, said Salhany shook Kapalka “out of his pants.”
The Lakers amped up the pressure at that point, but UAH goaltender Carmine Guerriero was up to the task. He made several saves from a variety of distances, and it took an odd bounce for Lake Superior to tie the game. Stephen Perfetto’s shot from near the goal line bounced off the post and in with 1:54 left in the second.
Lake Superior kept it going in the third, and finally took the lead with 9:21 left as Dan Radke’s deflection stymied Guerriero.
UAH had a few chances to tie things late, but for the most part had difficulty getting out of the defensive zone for a chunk of the period.
UAH drops to 1-32-1 for the season and 1-21-1 in the WCHA. Lake Superior goes to 16-15-1 overall and 12-12-0 in the WCHA, tied for fifth place.
The Chargers travel to Bemidji State next weekend. UAH returns home to finish the season in two weeks, entertaining Northern Michigan.
Stars of the game:
1. Dan Radke (LSSU, game-winning goal)
2. Stephen Perfetto (LSSU, goal)
3. Matt Salhany (UAH, goal)