Marian Settles for Series Split at Finlandia

HANCOCK, Mich. (SabreAthletics.com) – The Marian University men's hockey team fell victim to a tie-breaking third period goal by host Finlandia University as the Lions upset the Sabres, 3-2, inside Houghton County Arena, this afternoon, Jan. 26.

Marian's Kyle L'Arrivee gave the Sabres a 2-1 advantage in the second period, but the Lions managed to score two unanswered goals, including the game-winner from Ryan Daavettila with 12:07 remaining in regulation. Finlandia goalie Troy Chandler stood on his head at times, making 32 saves in the winning effort.

The two teams wound up splitting the two-game series after Marian flipped the score with a 3-2 win the night before.

The Lions improved to 4-15 overall, 4-10 in the MCHA after snapping a 12-game losing streak with the win. Meanwhile, Marian dropped to 8-10-1 (7-7 MCHA) with the loss.

The two teams went into the first intermission locked at 1-1. Cody Essel put the Lions up 1-0 with a goal just 2:27 into the contest. Tyler Klein then netted the second short-handed goal in as many days for the Sabres, scoring on an assist by Brian Berger at the 9:18 mark.

L'Arrivee made it 2-1 Sabres with 12:00 remaining in the second. Mitch Kriz and Robbie Bailey were credited with assists in the go-ahead score.

However, just 1:59 before the second intermission, Shigenobo Kakudate found the net to tie the game at 2-2.

The Sabre offense gained several opportunities in the third period, hitting the post multiple times while seeing Chandler sprawl all over the crease to stop additional chances.

Early in the period, it looked as if the Lions had taken a 3-2 lead, but the Sabres dodged a huge bullet when Josh Baker's net was knocked off its pegs just before the puck had crossed the goal line.

Unfortunately, Finlandia would eventually get that go-ahead goal when Daavettila connected at the 7:53 mark.

The Sabres were 0-for-2 on the power play in the third period and 0-for-5 for the game. Finlandia was also shutout in its three extra man tries.

Marian outshot Finlandia, 34-28, in the game and the two teams combined for 13 penalties for 34 minutes with seven of those whistles going against the home team.

The Sabres continue to cling to a slim two-point advantage in the MCHA North Division, leading rival Lawrence heading into next weekend's big showdown. The two teams will meet in a two-game series that will take place in Appleton Friday, Feb. 1, at 7 p.m. before returning to Fond du Lac in an 8 p.m. start Saturday, Feb. 2.