Michigan Tech dash past St. Thomas in serie sopener 6-1

Blake Pietila needs only eleven saves
Published: Dec. 10, 2021 at 11:55 PM EST
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HOUGHTON, Mich. (WLUC) - Michigan Tech won 6-1 over St. Thomas Friday at the MacInnes Student Ice Arena. The Huskies won their ninth game of the season by scoring three goals in each of the first two periods. Tech is now 9-7 overall and 6-5 in the CCHA.

“I’m really proud of the effort,” Tech coach Joe Shawhan said. “We were good on the faceoffs, good on the power play, and good on the penalty kills. We’ve been getting great spark out of a lot of players. I’m happy with the effort and our execution was good.

“That team is going to be really good. Rico is as good as any coach in college hockey. They work hard and play until the last whistle.”

Brian Halonen scored on a breakaway 13:37 into the game. Eric Gotz had the stretch pass up and Halonen buried his team-leading ninth of the season. Trenton Bliss picked up the first of three assists on the night with the secondary.

Colin Swoyer made it 2-0 4:07 later with a power-play goal. Arvid Caderoth had a backhanded centering pass that Swoyer knocked in backdoor. Bliss had the second assist on Swoyer’s third of the season and second on the power play.

Justin Misiak scored shorthanded with 40 seconds left in the first, finding the back of the net for the second straight game. Logan Pietila was hooked on a breakaway but stayed with the puck and found Misiak behind the net. Misiak quickly made a move to the front before the goaltender could get into position. The goal extended Misiak’s point streak to four games where he has three goals and three assists.

“It feels good,” Misiak said. “I have to give credit to my linemates for my recent success. We’re playing hard and clicking right now. I’m just playing my type of hockey, working hard on the forecheck, and creating opportunities there.”

Tristan Ashbrook got involved 3:45 into the second to make it 4-0. Misiak created a turnover in the offensive zone and Logan Pietila set up Ashbrook across the slot for his eighth of the season.

St. Thomas (1-18, 1-12 CCHA) scored its lone goal 8:19 into the second with a shot through traffic by Nolan Sawchuck. Grand Loven was credited with the assist.

Tommy Parrottino pushed the lead back to four with a power-play goal. Much like Swoyer’s goal, Trenton Bliss and Arvid Caderoth had the tic-tac-toe setup to Parrottino out front for his second of the season.

Justin Misiak buried his second of the night with 1:48 left in the second. Nick Nardella stole a puck at center ice and found Misiak streaking up the right side. Misiak put in the one-timer for his third goal of the season and 23rd of his career.

“It was a good bounce-back win for us after the tough weekend at Mankato last weekend,” Bliss said. “We stressed a full 60 minutes tonight and I think we accomplished that.

“This is an important conference game. This was a big three points. We knew they were going to come out with a lot of grit. We needed to match that and we did.”

Tech dominated in shots 44-12. Blake Pietila earned his ninth win of the season with 11 saves. He also assisted on Misiak’s first-period goal. Peter Thome stopped 38 shots for the visitors.

Tech was 2-for-4 on the power play and 3-for-3 on the penalty kill.

The teams will wrap up the CCHA series at 6:07 p.m. Saturday.

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