St. Cloud St. sweeps Alaska Anchorage to advance to WCHA Final Five
ST. CLOUD, Minn. -- St. Cloud State punched its ticket to St. Paul, Minn., and the 2013 WCHA Final Five with a 5-1 victory against Alaska Anchorage on Saturday. The victory gave the Huskies (23-14-1) a two-game sweep in the first round of the WCHA playoffs.
The Huskies gained a trip to its second consecutive Final Five with a top-notch effort in their win against Alaska Anchorage (4-25-7). Hobey Baker Award candidate Drew LeBlanc jump-started the SCSU attack on Saturday with his 13th goal of the season at 5:46 of the first period.
LeBlanc's goal was assisted by Kalle Kossila, his 17th of the season.
SCSU's David Morley posted his second consecutive game-winner at 4:56 of the third period with his 11th goal of the year. Taylor Johnson provided the first assist on the play and Garrett Milan notched the second assist on the goal.
UAA narrowed the gap with a goal at 5:58 by Blake Tatchell, which made it 2-1.
The Huskies sealed the deal at 9:13 with a booming one-timer from Nic Dowd on the power play that made it 3-1. Nick Jensen and LeBlanc provided helpers on the goal, which was Dowd's 11th of the season and Jensen's 25th assist of 2012-13.
Cory Thorson padded the lead to 4-1 with his goal at 13:20 of the third period. Ben Hanowski and Jimmy Murray each had assists on the play, which was Thorson's 10th goal of 2012-13.
The game was capped with an empty-net goal by Hanowski at 18:47 of the third period. Dowd chipped in the first assist and LeBlanc provided the second assist. The goal was Hanowski's 15th of 2012-13 while Dowd now has 24 assists this season.
With the point, LeBlanc becomes the ninth player in team history to score 50 points in a season. He now ranks third in the nation with 50 points and tops all DI players with 37 assists.
In the nets, SCSU's Ryan Faragher turned in a stellar effort with 19 saves to gain his 22nd win. He now ranks second in the team records for most wins in a season (tied with Brian Leitza, who had 22 in 1997-98).
SCSU outshot UAA 46-20 and the Huskies went one of three on the power play and they were three of three on the penalty kill.