The Gustavus men’s hockey team inched ever closer to locking up a spot in the Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference playoffs with an 8-6 win over Augsburg Friday night at Don Roberts Ice Rink in St. Peter. Gustavus improves its record to 14-7-1 overall, 9-4 in the MIAC. Augsburg falls to 6-13-3 overall, 2-8-3 in the MIAC.
Mike Hosfield (Jr., Golden Valley, Minn.) put the Gusties on the board with a power play goal at the 7:22 mark of the first period off assists from Sami Idris (So., Gothenburg, Sweden) and Steve Dusich (Sr., Apple Valley, Minn.). Senior Loren Havemeier (Sleepy Eye, Minn.) dropped in his team-high ninth power play goal of the season just 2:22 later to put Gustavus up 2-0. Sophomores Ben Ollila (Lino Lakes, Minn.) and Ian Wolff (Chanhassen, Minn.) were credited with assists on the play.
Augsburg cut the two-goal deficit in half with 6:33 to play when Aaron Johnson, the MIAC’s leading scorer, put a shot past Gustavus goalie Erik Kraska (Sr., Plymouth, Minn.). Hosfield would extend the lead back to two goals with his second of the game just 75 seconds later. Idris and Dusich again assisted Hosfield. Idris put the Gusties up 4-1 with seven seconds to play, converting a 2-on-1 opportunity with Hosfield. Dusich was also credited with his third assist of the game on the play.
Steven Jensen (Jr., Kentwood, Mich.) pushed the lead to 5-1 off assists from Jon Keseley (Jr., St. Louis Park, Minn.) and Kraska. For Kraska, it was his second career assist from between the pipes. The Auggies scored back-to-back goals within a span of 1:08 to cut the lead back to two at 5-3. Joe Haehn scored the first on the power play, while Cody Swanson added the other with both teams at full strength. A Chad Georgell hooking penalty put the Gusties on the power play late in the period, allowing Wolff to pick up his third goal of the season. Wolff’s shot, taken from the point, slid beneath the pads of Auggie goalie Andy Kent.
Keseley stretched the lead to 7-3 just 2:30 into the third period, scoring unassisted on a power play created by a five-minute major in the waning seconds of the previous period. The Auggies scored three straight goals during the period, including one by Danny Carlson with 58 seconds left to cut the Gustie lead to 7-6. Loren Havemeier iced the victory for Gustavus with an empty net goal with 13 seconds left on the clock.
Hosfield led the Gusties with a pair of goals and an assist, while Idris added a goal and two assists before being sent off with a game misconduct midway through the third period. Havemeier added two goals and Keseley and Wolff each scored a goal and an assist. Dusich and Jay Phillips (Sr., Bemidji, Minn.) each tallied a pair of assists.
Haehn and Johnson each posted a goal and two assists to lead the Auggies, while Critter Nagurski added another goal to his team-high total. Nagurski now has 15 goals on the season.
Kraska snared 25 saves in moving his record to 12-5-1 on the season. Andy Kent dropped to 0-3-0 on the season with 21 saves on the night.
The teams will complete the home-and-home series Saturday evening at Augsburg Ice Arena in Minneapolis. Game time is 7 p.m. Gustavus can clinch a spot in the MIAC playoffs with a point in any of its last three games.