Western Michigan slides by CC in overtime, 3-2 - KOAA.com | Continuous News | Colorado Springs and Pueblo

Western Michigan slides by CC in overtime, 3-2

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Richard Zehnal scored 35 seconds into overtime to give No. 11 Western Michigan a 3-2 victory over Colorado College Friday night in Kalamazoo, Mich.

Zehnal took a pass from Hugh McGing and placed a backhander past CC goalie Alex Leclerc to continue WMU’s dominance over the Tigers in Kalamazoo, improving to 8-0-1 over Colorado College at Lawson Ice Arena.

The Tigers (9-11-3, 3-8-2-1 NCHC) rallied from a 1-0 deficit to take a 2-1 lead midway through the third period thanks to goals from Trevor Gooch and Troy Conzo. Gooch got the Tigers on the board and evened the score at 1-1 with his eighth goal of the season at the 2:15 mark of the final frame. Gooch poked the puck to Branden Makara, who was ahead of the pack for a breakaway. A Western Michigan defender pulled Makara down, but he was able to get the puck to Gooch, who turned at the right circle and fired the puck through the legs of WMU goalie Ben Blacker.

Conzo then gave CC the lead at the 12:16 mark with the second goal of his career. Christiano Versich gathered the puck inside the Western zone and found Conzo, who went top shelf against Blacker. After Gooch was called for a delay of game penalty just over a minute later, Paul Stoykewych made it 2-2 with a shot from the slot over the shoulder of Leclerc.  

The Broncos (13-9-1, 8-5-0-0 NCHC) scored twice in five power-play opportunities Friday night, while the Tigers were blanked on seven power plays, including three in each of the second and third periods.

Neither team scored in a frenetic first period that saw 32 total shots (19 for WMU, 13 for CC), but the Tigers mustered just two shots in the second period despite those three power-play opportunities, including a five-minute advantage early in the frame after Lawton Courtnall delivered a late hit on Mason Bergh in the first minute of the period. Courtnall was called for a major interference penalty and given a game misconduct as well.

“We have nobody to blame but ourselves,” Colorado College head coach Mike Haviland said. “We had nine minutes of power play in the second period and only two shots. We played better in the third and outshot them 17-10.”

The Broncos opened the scoring with 1:01 left in the second period when Scott Moldenhauer took a cross-ice pass from Dawson DiPietro and found an open net on the power play behind Leclerc, who finished the game with 40 saves.

“Alex played well tonight,” Haviland said. “This is a tough building to play in.”

Western Michigan outshot the Tigers, 43-32, with Bergh leading CC with five shots, followed by Gooch with four.

The two teams will battle again Saturday night, beginning at 5:05 p.m. (MT).

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