The Minnesota State University, Mankato men’s hockey team lifted their second-straight Mason Cup Saturday night as they defeated Northern Michigan 3-2 in a heart-pounding thriller. The first period of action saw intensity right from the start as Minnesota State was kept off the board after a review from the officials. Not long after, Northern Michigan fell victim of the unfortunate break as sophomore goalie Keenan Rancier closed the door on a penalty shot to keep the score deadlocked at zeros after one. The Wildcats got on the board first at the 16:23 mark of the second thanks to a snipe from senior forward Alex Frye.
The Wildcats were able to pick up more momentum at the 7:27 mark of the third when Frye buried his second of the game on a quick breakaway to increase the lead to 2-0. With the score locked at 2-0 late in the third, the Mavericks were gifted a 5-on-3 powerplay in the hopes of cutting the lead in half but were unable to convert on either powerplay. In desperation mode, the Mavericks potted two late goals thanks to junior and freshman forwards Ondrej Pavel and Christian Fitzgerald to send the crowd into eruption and the game into overtime. With a glimpse of déjà vu from last season’s overtime thriller, sophomore forward Zach Krajnik lifted the Mavericks to their second straight Mason Cup by a final score of 3-2. (All photos by Dylan Engel/The Reporter)
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