March 16, 2009

Courtesy of Miami (Ohio)

OXFORD, Ohio - No. 8 Miami fell, 3-1, to Northern Michigan in the second-round of the CCHA tournament. With the loss, Miami is eliminated from the tournament and Northern Michigan advances to the semi-finals.

Will Weber (Gaylord, Mich.) scored late in the third period, but Northern Michigan scored in each period and got another 40-save performance from Brian Stewart to propel them to Joe Louis Arena.

The Wildcats took the early lead with a shorthanded goal from Mark Olver at 5:41 of the first period. Miami was on a five-minute power play following the ejection of  Andrew Cherniwchan for hitting from behind. Northern Michigan extended its lead in the second period with an even-strength goal from Mike Maltese.  Jared Brown picked up the assist.
Miami got on the board in the third period with an extra-attacker goal by Weber at 17:53 of the stanza. Gary Steffes (Grand Blanc, Mich.) and Jarod Palmer (Fridley, Minn.) earned the assists.

Northern Michigan put the game out of reach with an empty-net goal by Nick Sirota.

The RedHawks will now wait and see if they are selected to play in the NCAA tournament. The national tournament bracket will be announced on Sunday, March 22.

CCHA Second Round
No. 8 Miami vs. Northern Michigan
Game Notes
March 15, 2009 • Steve Cady Arena • Oxford, Ohio

    * For the third time in as many years, Northern Michigan won a road playoff series after losing the first game. In 2007, the Wildcats defeated Ohio State in the first round, while they eliminated Michigan State in the second round last year.
    * The Wildcats advance to Detroit to face Notre Dame in the second game Friday (8 p.m. on Fox Sports Net). The other game will be Michigan vs. the Ohio State-Alaska winner.
    * Northern is 17-16-5 overall, while Miami falls 20-11-5. In CCHA Tournament play, NMU is now 39-29-7, while Miami is 22-33.
    * The game turned in the first period when Northern Michigan scored shorthanded during a five-minute major penalty. Mark Olver picked up a puck at center ice and beat Reichard just 5:41 in. The Wildcats then killed off the rest of the time. The goal was Olver's 16th of the year and was unassisted.
    * Miami outshot the Wildcats 42-19 overall, including 22-3 in the third period. In the five meetings this year, the RedHawks held a 214-94 advantage in shots.
    * Northern Michigan added a second goal in the second period when Mike Maltese tallied his third of the year.
    * Miami pulled Cody Reichard with 2:30 left in the game and Will Weber made the decision pay off. His third goal of the year with the first with an extra Miami attacker since Carter Camper scored vs. RPI on Dec. 14, 2008.
    * But when Reichard came to the bench a second time, Nick Sirota sealed NMU's victory with an empty-metter.
    * Brian Stewart stopped 41 shots in the game and 117 during the weekend series. He improved to 14-12-3 on the year and 3-1-1 against Miami. Reichard took the loss to fall to 7-7-2.