Nanooks finish off sweep of Chargers

Alaska quashed a lot of the momentum UAH had after its sweep of Anchorage last week. The Chargers did not help themselves Saturday.

UAH was swept by the Nanooks after a 5-2 defeat at the Von Braun Center, giving Alaska a six-point advantage over UAH for seventh place in the WCHA standings.


The Chargers (6-21-1 overall, 6-13-1-1 WCHA), leaving points on the table against the team they were tied with coming into the weekend, heads to Mankato next week to face the top team in the league in Minnesota State.

The Chargers uncharacteristically racked up penalties, particularly in the first two periods, in what was their least disciplined game of the season. UAH had 32 penalty minutes, 10 on major penalties.

Alaska (8-16-2, 8-11-1-1) exploited the Chargers’ penalty kill, who had the fifth-highest efficiency in Division I coming into the weekend. The Nanooks scored four times on 10 power play opportunities.

UAH committed four penalties in the first period, including a cross-checking penalty on Dayne Finnson that needed video review (it was kept as a two-minute minor).

The first was a slashing call on Cam Knight at 1:17, and Alaska converted at 2:05 when Tyler Cline’s shot from the left point found its way through traffic and UAH goalie Mark Sinclair (32 saves).

The penalties were not conducive to generating offense, and it showed in the period shot totals. Alaska only lead in shots on goal 8-4, but had at 20-7 advantage in shot attempts thanks to the four power plays.

UAH did tie the game at 1-1 in the first, almost by accident. A turnover in the Alaska zone saw the puck come right to Christian Rajic in the right circle. Rajic quickly just threw the puck on net, and it got past Anton Martinsson (19 saves) for his second goal of the season with 4:11 left in the period.

The second period was more of the same, except worse. UAH was shorthanded for literally half the period because of two major penalties.

The first was against Bailey Newton, whose hit on Matthew Doran just 37 seconds in drew a five-minute penalty, his second in as many games. This time, however, Newton did not get a game misconduct.

Colton Leiter scored late in the extended power play to give Alaska a 2-1 lead at the 5:31 mark of the second.

The second UAH major penalty was against Andrew Dodson, who checked Tyler Cline from behind. Cline had to be helped to the bench, but he would return to action. Dodson did get the game misconduct and was ejected with 11:31 left in the second.

The Nanooks used this to score two more power play goals and increase their lead to 4-1. Tristan Thompson found gold from long range, and Max Newton’s goal was originally waved off but video review overturned the call.

With 3:17 left in the second, Hans Gorowsky scored his eighth goal of the season from the slot to cut Alaska’s lead in half. Despite all the penalties, the Chargers found themselves down only two entering the third.

UAH had many looks but hardly any shots in a power play early in the third. Alaska then extended its lead to 5-2 after Chad Staley finished off a 2-on-1 with 13:13 to go, and that was all she wrote.

The Chargers were outshot 37-21 in the game and were 0-for-4 on the power play.

UAH’s final home series of the season is Feb. 8-9 against Northern Michigan.