When Domenic Monardo scored an unassisted goal at 11:47 of the third period in Lake Superior State's opening contest at the Denver Cup Friday night, the Lakers seemed to be poised to take the extra step they had been looking for late in games this season.
Monardo's goal drew the Laker to within one goal of Denver, 4-3.
Instead, it was Denver who responded with late-game heroics. The Pioneers added two insurance goals in the game's final six minutes to take the win, 6-3.
For the Lakers, Saturday night's consolation match with Clarkson proved to be more of the same.
Nick McParland's goal halfway through the third period knotted the score at 1-1 against Clarkson.
Again, it was their opponent who supplied the late winning touch, barely edging the Lakers, 2-1, on Allan McPherson's shot that beat Laker netminder Kevin Kapalka late in the period.
Lake Superior head coach Jim Roque, who had lamented the Laker's inability to step up in crunch time just the previous weekend at Michigan, told USCHO, “It's a hard-fought game, an even game. Our goalie made a bad mistake on the first goal and I thought they got a good play by a kid on a line rush, a real nice play to beat our guy and score a goal. Not much difference in the teams really; just comes down to a play.”
The Lakers get their next chance to make plays when they host Bowling Green for a pair of conference games this weekend.