Bemidji, MN – The 15th-ranked Falcons guaranteed themselves home-ice advantage in the first round of the WCHA Playoffs Saturday. Their second overtime win after tying Bemidji State 2-2 clinched the top-four finish.
Ryan Bednard stopped 20 of 22 shots for the Falcons. Zach Driscoll had 28 saves on 30 attempts for the Beavers.
Neither team found the net in the game’s opening period.
The Falcons had 12 shots in the opening period, while the Beavers challenged Bednard eight times.
The Falcons opened the game’s scoring at 1:13 of the second period. John Schilling broke free at the end of a penalty kill. He skated in on Driscoll before sending a low backhand chance that beat the Beavers’ netminder. The goal was Schilling’s sixth of the season and was assisted by Lukas Craggs.
Bowling Green extended their lead to 2-0 at 11:35 of the second period. Lukas Craggs started an odd-man rush with a pass to Brandon Kruse. The sophomore forward sent a pass across the crease to Max Johnson who buried the chance for his 13th goal of the season.
The Beavers responded with their first goal of the game at 13:41 of the second period. Owen Sillinger buried a shot from the slot to cut the Falcons’ lead to 2-1.
Bowling Green had nine shots on net during the second period while Bemidji State had six chances.
The Beavers tied the game 43 seconds into the third period. Justin Beaudry’s slap shot from the blue line beat Bednard for the equalizing marker.
Neither team scored again in the third period, sending the game to an overtime period.
Bemidji State had eight shots in the third frame while Bowling Green had five.
The Falcons carried play in the overtime period, racking up four shots while not allowing any from Bemidji State. But, the game went to a second overtime period for conference point purposes.
Second Overtime Period
Max Johnson finally ended the protracted game at 3:53 of the second overtime period. Alec Rauhauser forced a turnover in the neutral zone and sprung Johnson. The sophomore forward skated in, made a series of moves, then beat Driscoll five-hole to earn the extra WCHA point.
The Falcons had five shots in the second overtime while the Beavers had a pair of chances.
The Falcons’ record moves to 20-8-5, 15-7-4-3 on the season. The two-point performance sealed home-ice for the Falcons in the first round of the WCHA Playoffs.
The Beavers’ new record is 15-13-6, 13-9-4-2.
Bowling Green travels back home next weekend to welcome Alabama-Huntsville in the final week of regular season action.
- Max Johnson (BGSU) – 2 G (2OT GWG)
- Justin Baudry (BSU) – 1 G, 1 A
- Owen Sillinger (BSU) – 1 G, 1 A