Minnesota goalie Eric Schierhorn covered up some early mistakes by his defense and made 25 saves for a shutout victory as he led Minnesota to a 4-0 victory over Bemidji State and to third place at the North Star College Cup.
Schierhorn kept the Gophers in the game early in front of a sparsely populated crowd by stopping a pair of breakaways in the first 71 seconds of the game.
After a scoreless first period, the Gophers finally broke through in the second period when, just 45 seconds into the period, Leon Bristedt gathered a generous bounce off the back boards on a wide shot and put it into the net.
Ryan Norman iced the third period by giving Minnesota a key insurance goal for a 2-0 lead at 7:44 of the period, and the Gophers tacked on goals by Taylor Cammarata and an empty-netter from Justin Kloos to close out the game.
Notes and Thoughts
-Minnesota is notorious for playing down to the intensity level of the crowd in these games with very few people in a big building, and that was the case again early here. The difference was that Eric Schierhorn was sensational, and Bemidji State just didn't have the offense to get anything going. Schierhorn kept his team in the game long enough for the Gopher offense to get a couple goals and they cruised to the victory.
-Can't say too much else about this one.
Shots on goal: BSU: 9-12-4-25 MINN: 10-8-12-30
Even strength shot attempts: BSU: 9-12-13-34 MINN: 14-17-14-45
Prime scoring area attempts: BSU: 8-9-4-21 MINN: 5-10--6-21
What do the numbers tell us?
Bemidji State was a lot more aggressive and able to get into the prime scoring areas of the ice tonight. After having 11 attempts from that area last night against St. Cloud State, they had 21 tonight, including some great opportunities in the first two periods.
Surprisingly, the third period was by far Bemidji State's worst, which one wouldn't expect from a team trailing. Credit Minnesota's defense for tightening things up.
0:45 Leon Bristedt from Vinni Lettieri and Taylor Cammarata 1-0 Minnesota
Lettieri took a shot from the high slot that went wide, but the puck bounced off the back boards to Bristedt at the left side of the net and he put the puck back in.
7:44 Ryan Norman from Darian Romanko and Ryan Lindgren 2-0 Minnesota
Norman outmuscled a BSU defender to get to the front of the net and found a pass from Romanko that he slapped a shot past Bitzer.
14:36 Taylor Cammarata from Brent Gates Jr. and Vinni Lettieri (power play) 3-0 Minnesota
Cammarata got a clean shot from the mid-slot on the PP and buried a low wrist shot.
17:18 Justin Kloos from Tyler Sheehy 4-0 Minnesota
Kloos backhanded a shot on net from just inside the blue line for the empty-net goal.