Day one of the 2016 North Star College Cup saw the St. Cloud State Huskies defeat the Mankato State Mavericks 5-4 in an excellent first game of the tournament. The University of Minnesota Gophers fell to the Bemidji State Beavers 4-2 in the second game.
For the Gophers, the loss is tenth loss in the last eleven games to in-state opponents. The Gophers had a number of streaks end against the Beavers including a five game winning streak and a 22 penalty kill streak. Each team had scored one goal at the start of the third period. Twenty minutes later, the Beavers scored three, including an empty net goal, to the Gophers’ one goal.
The 4-2 left the home crowd numb as the Beavers buried a power play goal with less than four minutes left in the game to take the lead. The final four minutes were excruciating for the home crowd as they have seemingly been conditioned to expect the worst at the end of games. Eventually the empty net goal was scored and the game went to the Beavers.
The third place game and the final game will put the University of Minnesota Gophers against their rivals from the south, the Minnesota State Mavericks. The finals feature the third ranked St. Cloud State Huskies and the unranked Bemidji State Beavers. Stay tuned to The Minnesota Sports Report for more news from the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul, Minnesota.
Photos by Rick Corwine