FAIRBANKS – The Bowling Green State University ice hockey team defeated Alaska-Fairbanks Friday night, dropping the Nanooks by a score of 3-2 at the Carlson Center. Juniors Bryce Williamson, Brett Mohler and freshman Mark Cooper scored the Falcon goals, while senior Andrew Hammond (2-6-1) turned away an impressive 39-of-41 shots in the win. Both teams were scoreless on the power play, with the Falcons going 0-for-4 and the Nanooks going 0-for-2.
Bowling Green scored the first goal of the contest, coming just before the midway point of the opening period.
Senior Bobby Shea started the play, fighting for puck possession along the left side of the Nanook zone. Shea found sophomore Marcus Perrier at the point, setting him up for a shot towards the Alaska cage. Alaska's Sean Cahill made the initial save, but let up a rebound to Williamson on the left side of the crease. Williamson slid the puck past the sprawling Cahill for his third goal of the season, giving Bowling Green the 1-0 lead.
Alaska wouldn't answer back until the middle frame, scoring an even-strength marker off the stick of sophomore Max Drummond just 4:08 into the second period.
With the game tied at 1-1, the Nanooks continued to pressure Bowling Green, outshooting the Falcons by a 10-5 margin. Hammond made several fantastic saves in the frame, holding the Nanooks to just one goal in the period. Despite the shot advantage, Bowling Green dominated on the score board, netting two more goals in the second stanza.
The first of the Falcons' two goals came at the 14:12 mark, after some great cycling with the puck down low. Sophomore Mike Sullivan fired the puck behind the Alaska net, where junior Cam Wojtala battled for possession. Wojtala sent the puck to the slot, where it deflected off a defender to Mohler at the left hash mark. Mohler fired a wrist shot through the crowd, beating Cahill for his second goal of the season.
With just 3:22 remaining in the frame, Bowling Green scored again to take a 3-1 lead. Shea once again started the play, gaining possession of the puck in the left circle of the Nanook zone. Shea sent the puck towards the crease, where it banked off sophomore Dan DeSalvo. Cooper collected the puck, and tipped it past Cahill for his fourth goal of the season.
Alaska would cut the Falcons' lead to 3-2 just under seven minutes into the final frame, taking advantage of a tip in front from Nanook Chad Gehon at even strength.
Bowling Green clung to the one goal lead for the remaining thirteen minutes, thanks in large part to the play of Hammond between the pipes. Hammond stopped 21-of-22 shots in the final frame, securing the Falcons' second conference win of the season.
The win pushes Bowling Green's overall record to 3-9-3, with a record of 2-6-2-1 in CCHA action. The loss drops Alaska's record to 6-8-3 overall, with a record of 4-7-2 in conference play.
Perrier's assist on the first Falcon goal marks his first point of the season and his first since March 11, a 4-3 OT win over Ferris State in the CCHA Playoffs last season.
Bowling Green's three goal output marked only the fifth time this season that the Falcons have scored more than two goals in a game. Their last came against Ferris State on Nov. 16, a 4-3 OT loss.
Hammond's 39 save effort was a season high, and marked the second consecutive game that he has made 30 saves or more.
Shea recorded two assists in the contest, marking the first multi-assist game of his career, and first multi-point game of the season.