Chargers shut out by BG in home opener, 5-0

Coming home against a good WCHA opponent reminded the Chargers they still have work to do.

UAH couldn’t find the rallying magic — or much offense at all — it found at Colorado College last week, as another early deficit turned into a 5-0 loss to Bowling Green in their home opener Friday. The loss put a damper on the homecoming festivities in front of an announced crowd of 2,420.

The Chargers fell to 0-3-0 on the season and 0-1-0 in the WCHA. The Falcons (2-1-0, 1-0-0) dominated in shots on goal, holding a 41-20 advantage.

The first Bowling Green goal came shorthanded. Nolan Valleau, who already had four assists on the season, centered to Mitchell McClain all alone in the slot in front of Carmine Guerriero. McClain pounded it home for a 1-0 lead at the 6:59 mark.

The second goal came on another nice centering pass, and another defensive zone turnover. Pierre-Luc Mercier from the left side sends it to Kevin Dufour at the doorstep, who beat Guerriero with 23.5 seconds remaining in the first.

For the third straight game, the Chargers found themselves with a 2-0 deficit after one.

However, penalties would prevent the Chargers from making the second-period rally that was done in both games at Colorado College. The crucial one came with 6:55 left, as Brennan Saulnier left the game with a game misconduct to go along with a five-minute checking from behind penalty.

Cody Champagne then went off for a minor boarding penalty 29 seconds later. In the waning seconds of that penalty, Brandon Hawkins shot went off of Guerriero’s glove and in to give Bowling Green a 3-0 lead.

It was one of the few pucks that got by Guerriero that period, as he made 17 saves in the frame, many with his glove and his body.

The Chargers didn’t pose much of a threat in the third period, and Bowling Green tacked on a couple of goals to clinch the game. Matt Pohlkamp made it 4-0 at 1:42, and Ben Murphy made it 5-0 at 6:42.

Guerriero finished with 36 saves. Chris Nell, a freshman, got his first collegiate shutout with 20 saves.

The Chargers have now lost six straight home openers, and their winless streak at home against Division I opponents is now at 29 games (0-26-3). They’ll try to finally break that streak Saturday night against the Falcons at 7:07 p.m.

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