For the second consecutive Saturday, Eric Walsky emerged as a difference maker.
Walsky, who tallied four times against North Dakota a week earlier, scored Colorado College’s fourth power-play goal of the night with 8:52 left in the game, snapping a 3-3 deadlock and propelling the Tigers to a 4-3 victory over Minnesota State University at the Alltel Center.
With its first road triumph of the season, third-ranked CC salvaged a split of its two-game series in Mankato, Minn., while improving to 7-2-3 overall for the season and 5-2-1 in WCHA play.
Walsky’s eighth red lighter of the season came less than two minutes after the Mavericks pulled even with their second of two goals in the first half of the final frame.
The Tigers, who spotted MSU a 1-0 lead just 23 seconds into the contest, came to life in the second period with three unanswered goals by Chad Rau, Scott McCulloch and Bill Sweatt – all with the home team a man down. Mavericks goaltender Mike Zacharias, who had coasted through the first 80 minutes of the series relatively unscathed, finally faced 15 shots in the period.
But Colorado College, which killed six of seven Minnesota State power plays altogether, got in trouble with a pair of back-to-back penalties early in the third period. MSU seized the opportunity, clicking during its 5-on-3 advantage to cut the deficit to 3-2 at the 7:29 mark. Sophomore Rylan Galiardi followed freshman Mike Louwerse’s power-play effort with an even-strength goal just two minutes later, and CC’s 3-1 lead was history.
Walsky, who earlier set up Rau’s goal with a nice drop pass, banked in his game winner off the skate of a Mavericks defender after cutting toward the net from the left faceoff circle. Rau and Sweatt also added an assist apiece in the victory.
Richard Bachman finished with 18 saves for the Tigers, including a point-blank stop on MSU defenseman Ben Youds in the closing minute of play. Zacharias steered away 19 Colorado College shots in the contest.