(Fort Wayne, IN) – The Cardinals men's hockey team headed south to take on the 6th-ranked Indiana Tech Warriors in the first game of this weekend's WHAC doubleheader. The Cardinals used the advantage on the powerplay to produce two goals with the man advantage on the night, but the Warriors would eventually pull away with a 5-2 victory.
Indiana Tech got off to a fast start, controlling the pace of play and producing several high quality opportunities on net. The Warriors took advantage, scoring the first goal of the game with 8:25 remaining in the first frame and tacking on a second tally with just over two minutes left to play in the period. At the conclusion of the first 20, Indiana Tech held a 2-0 lead and had outshot the Cardinals 16-4.
Concordia would get their feet under them in the second period, however, pushing back with momentum on the offensive end as they outshot the Warriors 11-9 in the frame. CUAA would get rewarded for their push, too, earning a 5-on-3 powerplay halfway through the second. As the first penalty ended, the Cards recorded several shots on frame, and through a congested lane of bodies, Tyler Bieniek found the puck, faked a shot, and fed Tyler Groth, who fired it into the open net to open the scoring for Concordia.
Both sides would continue to push back and forth, and the Warriors converted on a pass to the high slot to double their lead late in the 2nd period, heading into the break with a 3-1 lead.
Concordia would bounce back once again, this time on another 5-on-3 early in the third. Abel Christians took the puck near the goal line and fed it up to Tyler Groth, who sent it across to Hunter Kepple for a one-timer slap shot that beat the goaltender top right as the Cardinals cut the lead to 3-2.
Both teams went back and forth, each producing scoring opportunities for their respective sides as the third period continued on. Eventually, Indiana Tech would find a lose puck in front of the Concordia net that they put home to extend the lead back to 2 with 7:40 remaining. The Warriors followed that with a goal just 11 seconds later, and road the three-goal lead the rest of the way for the eventual 5-2 victory.
Elijah Gibbons started in net for the Cardinals, recording 30 saves, including countless clutch ones that kept the Cardinals in the contest early, in the loss. The Warriors outshot CUAA 35-23 for the game.
The Cardinals will be back in action tomorrow night when they play host to the very same Indiana Tech Warriors. Puck drop is set for 5:30pm at the Arctic Coliseum in Chelsea, MI.