OXFORD, Ohio – Two first-period goals gave the Miami RedHawks the upper hand in the first game of the second round of the Central Collegiate Hockey Association (CCHA) playoffs Friday night at Steve Cady Arena. Miami won the game 3-2, but the Wildcats appeared to tie the game late in the third period. The second game of the best-of-three will be played Saturday night (March 14) at 7:05 p.m.
NMU falls to 16-16-5 overall on the season while Miami improves to 20-10-5.
Justin Mercier put the home team on the board with his goal at 7:37 of the opening period. Carter Camper made it 2-0 with his 20th goal of the season a little over seven minutes later (14:49). The goal was scored on the power play.
Justin Florek cut the RedHawks lead in half at 2-1 with his ninth goal of the season at 8:59 of the second period. Tim Hartung and Blake Cosgrove assisted on the power-play goal. About 16:29 of the third period, Gregor Hanson scored what appeared to be the game-tying goal off of a faceoff, but the goal was waved off. Ben Lindemulder was sent off to the sin bin for interference instead. Miami added a power-play goal for a 3-1 game at 18:06 by Andy Miele.
NMU made it a game about 34 seconds later with a six-on-four power-play goal by senior Nick Sirota (18:40) for his eighth of the season. Mark Olver and Erik Gustafsson assisted. That was as close as the ‘Cats would get on the night.
The RedHawks had an advantage on the shot chart with 40 to 26 for the ‘Cats. Each side scored two power-play goals, as Miami had six opportunities while NMU had five. Brian Stewart had 37 saves on the night. His counterpart, Cody Reichard, had 24 saves in the win.
### NMU ###
Sports Information Director