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Monday, November 02, 2009

Wildcats drop both to No. 1 RedHawks

By Susannah Nichols/Northern Michigan Beat Writer

Despite three goals by Mark Olver, the Northern Michigan University Wildcats (1-4-1, 0-2-0 CCHA) lost twice to the top-ranked Miami RedHawks (6-1-1, 3-1-0 CCHA) last weekend by scores of 4-3 on Friday and 2-1 on Saturday.

On Friday, the teams played evenly in the first period, each recording 12 shots. In the second, Miami started to run away with the game. Justin Vaive scored twice, and the RedHawks added two more goals, one on the power play, to take a 4-0 lead going into the third period.

Reid Ellingson took over in goal for Brian Stewart, and the team made his job a little easier by outshooting the RedHawks, 12-4, in the last period. Less than a minute into the period, Kyle Follmer started the comeback effort. Olver and Justin Florek were credited with assists. Florek and Billy Smith then combined to set up Olver's power-play goal at 7:12. Olver scored again, assisted by Erik Spady, to bring the 'Cats within one. Ellingson left the net for the final minute, but the RedHawks hung on for the victory.

Stewart finished with 25 saves; Ellingson with four.

On Saturday, Northern hoped to even the series, and Olver did his part by getting the 'Cats on the board midway through the first. Erik Gustafsson and Ray Kaunisto earned assists on the play.

In the second period, penalties hurt Northern, as Miami scored two power-play goals to take the lead.

Neither team scored in the final period when Miami outshot Northern by a 10-8 margin.

Ellingson, in net for the 'Cats, recorded 24 saves.

The team hits the road next weekend when they will take on Ohio State in Columbus.

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