Chargers rally to beat Lakers in overtime for huge WCHA win on road

The Chargers’ first road game had its ups. Then its downs. But a big final push in the third period and overtime gave UAH its first conference win of the season.


Cody Marooney scored the game-winning goal from the slot at 1:07 of overtime giving the Chargers a 5-4 victory over Lake Superior State in Sault Ste. Marie on Friday night.

Former Lake Superior State recruit Hans Gorowsky assisted on the winner for UAH (2-2-1 overall, 1-1-1 WCHA), which rallied from two goals down in the third period to force the extra session. The Lakers fell to 2-5-0 overall and dropped their WCHA opener.

Brennan Saulnier and Kurt Gosselin, finally playing his first game as a Charger after being out with mono, each scored twice. Saulnier’s gave UAH the lead early, while Gosselin’s were needed to tie the game in the third.

Saulnier put the Chargers up 1-0 just 36 seconds in. Max McHugh picked a pass at the top of the circles, sent it to Saulnier, who cruised past the defense and deked goalie Gordon Defiel for an easy score.

UAH’s lead didn’t last long as J.T. Henke netted an equalizer at 2:16 from the right circle, but just two minutes later, Saulnier scored again, a wrister from the slot to regain the lead for the Chargers. Chad Brears notched his fifth assist of the season.

It went downhill from there — at least temporarily.

Things got dicey at the end of the first period. Alex Globke redirected James Roll’s blast through traffic past Carmine Guerriero to tie the game at 2-2 with 1:15 left. Then Henke scored his second goal of the game to give the Lakers the lead with 10.2 seconds left. Both goals were unassisted.

That left the Chargers frustrated, and Brandon Carlson’s cross-check at the final faceoff of the period started a scrum to end the frame. Saulnier and Lake State’s Eric Drapluk separated into their own scuffle, earning a five-minute roughing penalty for each and a 10-minute misconduct for Saulnier.

The Lakers started the second with the power play, and didn’t take long to extend their lead. Henke was all alone on the left side, beating Guerriero for the hat trick and a 4-2 Lake Superior State lead at 37 seconds.

The third period belonged to Gosselin. Four minutes in, Gosselin redirected a Marooney blast to cut the Lakers’ lead to 4-3.

Then at 8:46, Gosselin let it rip from the blue line and beat Defiel from long range, tying the game. Matt Salhany also had an assist. Jack Prince and Brandon Parker had the helpers.

UAH did not give Lake Superior many chances in the final minutes of regulation, but the biggest opportunity to win came in the final minute, when Henke’s breakaway ended up with a shot high and wide of Guerriero.

That allowed the game to go into overtime, setting up the winning tally by Marooney, who had his second goal of the season. It was the first time the Chargers trailed by two goals or more in the third period and won since a 4-3 win over Robert Morris on February 20, 2010.

Lake Superior had a 28-27 advantage in shots on goal. Guerriero made 24 saves for UAH, while Defiel made 22.

Game two of the series is Saturday night at 6:07 p.m. Central Time.

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