Broncos' Comeback Thwarts Mavericks, 5-3

Western Michigan scored four goals in the third period to erase a two-goal deficit and beat the Omaha hockey team, 5-3, on Saturday night at Lawson Arena.

With the loss, the Mavericks fall to 13-15-2 overall and 10-8-2-1 in the NCHC, good for third place. Western Michigan improved to 15-12-5 overall and 9-9-2-2 in conference play.

Josh Archibald had two goals for the Mavericks, extending his NCHC-leading goal total to 26.

Leading 3-1 entering the third, the Broncos began their comeback when Nolan LaPorte scored from a sharp angle during a power play at 11:05.

Just 1:17 later, Colton Hargrove got free in the slot and fired a shot past UNO goaltender Ryan Massa.

Western Michigan took its first lead at 14:12 when Chase Balisy lifted a shot just under the crossbar from the crease for his second goal of the weekend.

Shane Berschbach hit an empty net with 40 seconds to go to close the scoring.

Massa suffered the loss in net with 20 saves while Western Michigan’s Frank Slubowski made 25 saves.

Massa was the star of the first period as Western Michigan benefitted from three power plays and outshot the Mavericks, 11-6. Massa’s best work came on the third penalty kill when he stopped Balisy on two shots in tight.

The Mavericks broke on top at 3:08 of the second period. Archibald hammered at the rebound of a shot by Brian Cooper, finally hitting the net behind Slubowski.

Just 37 seconds later, the Broncos tied it when Justin Kovacs got free and fired on Massa. The puck broke off Massa and trickled in for a shorthanded goal at 3:45.

UNO retook the lead while enjoying a 5-on-3 power play. Archibald fired home a feed from Dominic Zombo to leave him one goal shy of tying the school record for goals in a season.

Tanner Lane pushed the lead to 3-1 at 15:09 of the period. He tipped a loose puck past defenseman Kenney Morrison and raced in on a breakaway. He tucked the puck between the pads of Slubowski for his fifth goal of the year.

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