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Bemidji State Athletics | October 14, 2017

Bemidji State routs Minnesota Duluth in season opener

Bemidji State trailed early in the game but scored four third-period goals to edge Minnesota Duluth.

BEMIDJI, Minn. -- The Bemidji State University men's hockey team trailed by a goal after the first period, but rallied with a goal in the second and three third-period goals beat No. 9 Minnesota Duluth, 5-2, Friday.

In all, 11 different BSU players found their way to the score sheet, led by Gerry Fitzgerald, who had a goal and two assists, and Zach Whitecloud, who finished the season-opener with a pair of assists. Both we part of a BSU power-play unit that produced two goals on five opportunities.

After being out shot 10-6 in the first period despite the benefit of a pair of power-play opportunities, the Beavers went to the locker room trailing 1-0.

MORE: Bemidji State goalie Michael Bitzer backstops Beavers to new heights

Midway through the second period, BSU got the break it needed when G. Fitzgerald took a pass form Whitecloud and fired his first goal of 2017-18 past the Bulldogs goaltender on the power play.  The game-tying goal seemed to be the spark BSU needed as momentum started to roll in its favor for the final 10:50 of the frame.

Tied 1-1 with 20 minutes to play, the Beavers dominated the third. Out shot 21-9 during the first 40 minutes, BSU went toe-to-toe with the Bulldogs matching their eight shots. Adam Brady put BSU in the lead at the 3:55 mark, netting his first collegiate goal on the power play, again with Whitecloud setting the table. Justin Baudry finished a rush 1:56 later to put BSU up 3-1 and Brendan Harris poked his first BSU goal through a scrum in front of the net and past Hunter Shepard at the 7:30 mark.

UMD would push back late in the period, getting a goal from Karson Kuhlman with 60 seconds ot play, cutting the BSU lead to 4-2, but Leo Fitzgerald would make good on an empty-net goal with nine seconds left to put the game out of reach.

Michael Bitzer picked up the victory in goal--the 50th of his BSU career--making 27 saves on 29 shots.


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