ADRIAN, Mich. – The men's hockey team was trailing 4-2 after two periods and they knew if they kept putting pressure on MSOE that a comeback in the final 20 minutes was possible. The Bulldogs scored twice in the first 6:33 to tie the game and then got the winning goal at 12:47 of the third for a 5-4 win over the Raiders.
"We were having success in the first two periods with pressure, but the bounces were not going our way," said head coach Adam Krug. "After the second period I told the guys to keep up the pressure and continue to drive towards the net. We didn't have a good night on the power play, so we needed to grind out even strength goals and the first two goals of the third were all about positioning and effort."
The Bulldogs gave up a short-handed goal 3:15 into the game as Jerad Tafoya converted on a 2-on-1 by firing the puck low inside the right post. The Raiders then took a 2-0 lead at 11:59 on just their fourth shot on goal. Eric Tien got a pass from Tafoya and skated across the crease from right to left and slid the puck under senior goaltender Scott Shackell. The second goal ended the night for Shackell as senior James Hamby entered the game.
Adrian got a very important goal by a unlikely source at 18:29 as senior Micki Mihailovich scored his first of the year and second of his career with an assist from Jeremy Olinyk. Mihailovich took a shot at the top of the point and it went through a screen in front of MSOE goaltender Nick Kohn to cut the deficit to 2-1 after 20 minutes.
Omar Mullen scored his first of the year on the power play at 7:23 of the second on a fluke play where the puck went off a defenseman and past Hamby who was looking for the puck to be centered between the circles. Gage Christianson and Brent Wilcox each had an assist on the only power play goal of the night for MSOE. Olinyk scored just 29 seconds later to get back within a goal at 3-2 on a wrist shot from the left circle with assists from Mihailovich and Austin Rust.
The biggest hurdle of the second period was that Adrian committed 10 penalty minutes and spent a lot of time in the penalty box. Olinyk took two minor penalties on one play after Mullen scored his second of the game at 11:56 to give the Raiders a 4-2 lead. The Bulldogs killed off all four minutes and another penalty by Duston Hebebrand to keep it at a two-goal deficit after 40 minutes.
Freshman Taylor McCloy got the Bulldogs going in the third at 4:37 taking a pass from fellow freshman Kyle Brothers behind the net and burying the one-timer. Olinyk's second of the night at 6:33 tied the game at 4-4. He scored on a rebound after a shot by senior Kevin Balas right by the far post.
"Our players and coaches mentioned patience in the second intermission," said Olinyk who had two assists in four games last year against MSOE. "I just knew that I had to charge the net and beat my man to a spot by the post and chopped in the goal."
Nick LaRue and Brent Wilcox took penalties 28 seconds apart in the third and Adrian took advantage at 12:47 with the game-winning goal on their seventh power play try. Senior Ryan Lowe carried the puck into the offensive zone and shot top left corner over the right shoulder of Kohn for his first of the season with an assist from Mathew Thompson.
Hamby turned aside 18 shots to pick up his sixth win against the Raiders. Kohn made 40 saves in the contest for MSOE including 18 in the third. The two teams will battle again on Saturday with a 3 p.m. start at Arrington Ice Arena. Adrian picked up its 10th straight win in the series and is now 28-3-2 against their rival from Milwaukee.