BEMIDJI, Minn. – Matt White scored two goals to help the Omaha hockey team knock off nemesis Bemidji State, 5-3, on Friday night at the Sanford Center.
UNO improves to 14-9-2 overall and 10-5-2, good for a tie with Minnesota for second in the WCHA. The Beavers drop to 5-13-5 and 4-9-4 in conference play. The two teams play again on Saturday at 7:07 p.m.
The Beavers struck just 1:39 into the game. Off a faceoff, Aaron McLeod won the draw back to defenseman Brady Wacker whose shot beat a screened John Faulkner.
The Mavs countered a little more than five minutes later. Johnnie Searfoss, back after missing the last four games because of injury, fed Jaycob Megna who threw a wrist shot on goal that tricked past BSU goalie Andrew Walsh. Of Megna's four career goals, three have come against the Beavers.
UNO grabbed its first lead of the game with just 1:13 remaining in the first period. White redirected a shot by Andrej Sustr past Walsh for his 13th of the year.
The Mavericks stretched their lead early in the second period. Walsh couldn't cover the puck in his crease, and James Polk reached in and poked it under him for his second goal of the season and his career. Both have come against the Beavers.
BSU responded just 40 seconds later when Jeff Jubinville dug the puck off the end wall and fed it in front to Jordan George who one-timed a shot past Faulkner to make it 3-2.
UNO restored the two-goal lead at 9:21 when Megna took a shot from the left point that ricocheted right to White who fired into a yawning net for his second of the game.
The Beavers closed the gap at 5:27 of the third period when Sam Rendle's dump-in from center ice hit a UNO stick and ricocheted past Faulkner. It was his second goal of the year.
BSU pressed the play and benefited from a late power play but couldn't net the equalizer. Searfoss scored into an empty net with 6.2 seconds remaining to seal the win.
White finished with three points by picking up an assist on Searfoss' goal while Walters also had two helpers to stretch his team-leading point total to 38.
Faulkner earned the win with 22 saves and improved to 12-4-2 this season. He is now just three wins from tying Dan Ellis for most wins in school history. Walsh had 26 saves as UNO outshot the Beavers, 31-25.
The win evened the season series between the two teams at 1-1-1. The Mavs are now 2-2-1 all-time at the Sanford Center and are unbeaten (2-0-1) in their last three games there.