David Martinson picked up his second hat trick of the season to help the Gustavus men’s hockey team snap a three-game losing skid as the Gusties defeated St. Thomas 5-3 on Friday night at Don Roberts Ice Rink. With the score tied 2-2 after two periods, Head Coach Brett Petersen’s squad tallied three goals in three minutes at the start of the third period en route to the victory. The Gusties improved to 9-7-0 overall and 4-3-0 in the MIAC, while the Tommies dropped to 6-6-2 overall and 3-1-1 in the league.
St. Thomas got the scoring started early in the first period when Tom Knutson skated up the left side of the rink for an uncontested shot on Gustie goaltender Matt Lopes. Knutson snuck the puck underneath Lopes as he was skating across the crease to give the Tommies a 1-0 lead at the 1:07 mark.
The Tommies were whistled for three penalties in the period, but Gustavus did not take advantage of the extra attacker until the end of the period when Ross Ring-Jarvi scored after receiving a pass from David Martinson and Spencer Campion with 1:28 left before intermission.
The Gusties put in their second goal of the game in the second period when Matt Schugel threaded a pass through neutral territory from deep in the Gusties’ defensive zone to Martinson, who got between the defenders. Martinson skated in on St. Thomas goaltender Sean Deichert alone for his 16th goal of the season at the 9:51 mark. The Tommies evened the score at 2-2 when Rob Johnson posted St. Thomas’ first power play goal of the contest with 6:10 on the clock, which was where the score stood at the end of two periods.
Coming out of the locker room in the third period, the Gustavus offense hit its stride when Coach Brett Petersen’s squad tallied three goals in the first five minutes. The scoring flurry started after St. Thomas was called for too many skaters on the ice. Martinson made a great move past the defender from the lower left circle and punched the puck between Deichert’s right pad and the post to put the Gusties ahead 3-2 at the 1:14 mark. Mitch Carlson and Ring-Jarvi were given assists on the goal. Martinson picked up the hat-trick minutes later when he crashed the net to give Gustavus a two-goal lead at 3:39. On another power play, Eric Bigham connected with Jamie Leathers on a pass across the front of the net for the Gusties’ third score of the period for a 5-2 lead with 15:44 to play.
St. Thomas was not finished, though, as Knutson scored his second goal of the game on a one-timer ten seconds into a power play opportunity at the 5:03 mark. The Tommies applied heavy offensive pressure for the duration of the game, but Lopes and the Gusties were up to the task as they hung on for the win.
Both teams were successful on the power play in a physical contest, as Gustavus converted 3-of-7 chances and St. Thomas was 2-of-5. Senior Matt Lopes earned his fifth win of the season after making 22 saves. Tommie goaltender Sean Deichert suffered the loss despite stopping 24 shots. Tyler Chestnut came into the game late for St. Thomas and recorded one save.
The squads square off again at 7:05 p.m. tomorrow night at St. Thomas Ice Arena in Mendota Heights.