Bethel bounced back from a 4-1 loss last night in St. Peter with a 3-2 victory over the Gustavus men’s hockey team on Saturday night in Blaine, Minn. The Gusties scored two third period goals to cut the lead to 3-2 yet couldn’t find the equalizer in the remaining six minutes of the game.
Both squads pick up two points in their MIAC-opening series of the year. Gustavus moves to 2-2-2 overall and 1-1-0 in the MIAC, while Bethel picks up its first win of the year and is now 1-5-0 overall and 1-1-0 in the MIAC.
The Royals finished the game with a total of 26 shots in the contest, 22 of which came in the first two periods as they outshot the Gusties 22-to-12 in the opening 40 minutes.
After a scoreless first period, Bethel’s Jack Paul opened up the scoring with a power play goal off a Chris Fiala assist 1:01 into the second period.
Jon Crouse gave the Royals a 2-0 lead at the 13:38 mark of the period off another Fiala assist and the Gusties found themselves down two goals heading into the second intermission.
The Gusties came out re-energized in the third period, outshooting Bethel 12-to-4. Despite the improved effort, Paul put Bethel up 3-0 with what turned out to be the game-winner at the 9:31 point of the period.
Ross Ring-Jarvi cut the lead to 3-1 at 11:02 after putting in a Zach May assist, and Adam Smyth scored is first goal of the season at 13:54 to bring the game to a final at 3-2. Andy Pearson was credited with the assist on Smyth’s goal.
The final shot total saw Bethel hold a 26-24 advantage. The Gusties were 0-for-3 on the power play, while Bethel was 1-for-4.
John McLean suffered his first of season in goal and is now 1-2-0 on the year. McLean made 23 saves in the game. Dan Haper picked up the victory (1-2-0) in a complete-game 22-save effort.
The Gustavus men’s hockey team will be back in MIAC action next weekend when the Gusties take on St. Tomas in a away/home series on Nov. 18-19. Friday night’s contest in Mendota Heights will begin at 7:00 p.m., while Saturday’s game will start at 7:05 p.m. at Don Roberts Ice Rink.