MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Minnesota scored three times in the first period and held on to beat Minnesota State, Mankato 3-2 Saturday for its first home sweep of the Mavericks since the 2005-06 season.
The Gophers won Friday’s series opener 4-2, ending a streak of three straight first-game losses.
Minnesota (13-4-1, 10-2-0) jumped out to a 3-0 lead after one period on goals by Seth Ambroz, Taylor Matson and Kyle Rau. Ambroz and Matson each assisted on a goal.
But the Mavericks (3-12-1, 2-9-1) chipped away behind Zach Lehrke. The sophomore forward scored his first goal on the power play at 2:32 of the second period. He pulled the Mavericks within one with a power-play goal at 4:00 of the third period. The Mavericks were skating 5-on-3 at the time.
The Mavericks generated little more by way of offense in the third period, finishing with just four shots on goal in the period.
“When you’ve got a lead going into the third period you’ve got to finish it off,” Minnesota coach Don Lucia said. “We did a good job defensively.”
MSUM had more chances but went 2-for-9 on the power play.
Kent Patterson had 26 saves for Minnesota. His chances dropped steadily from 14 in the first period to 10 in the second and finally four in the third.
The Mavericks had only nine shots on goal in the third period of the two games.
Austin Lee had 37 stops for the Mavericks, with a game-high 16 in the scoreless second period.
(© Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)