Ludvig Persson dared to allow a goal for the first time in three games on Saturday.
Unfortunately for him, his Miami team only scored once in front of him as the RedHawks and Colorado College skated to a 1-1 tie at Baxter Arena in Omaha on Saturday.
The Tigers won the shootout, 1-0 to earn the extra league point.
Persson’s scoreless streak ended at 163:06, the second-longest run for a Miami goalie who has recorded consecutive shutouts.
Junior Matt Barry scored the lone goal for the RedHawks, his second in as many games.
RECAP: After a scoreless first period, Barry gave Miami the lead 4:59 into the middle stanza when linemate Phil Knies backhanded a no-look pass through the crease to him for a one-timer, which he wired past Tigers goalie Dominic Basse.
Perrson shut down a breakaway by Grant Cruikshank late in the second period, shutting down the five hole on a backhand to deny the tying marker.
But with three seconds remaining in the second period, Colorado College’s Connor Mayer wristed the puck from the high slot on net, and it was deflected in front. Persson made the stop but the rebound came to Cruikshank at the top the crease, and he was able to backhand it in to tie the score.
STATS: Barry scored for the second straight game, becoming just the second player this season to accomplish that feat, as Chase Pletzke found the net in Games 4-5.
— Knies did not have a point through seven games, but he picked up two on Thursday and another in this contest to give him three in two games.
— Casey Gilling notched the other helper, his third in five contests.
— After hours of checking teams’ archives, VFTG can say this: Persson’s shutout streak is the second-longest among RedHawks goalies who have recorded back-to-back shutouts.
No one has ever done a study into Miami’s top shutout strings, which is something I am now very curious about and plan to tackle in the next couple of months or sooner.
But after a significant amount of research, we’ve determined Persson is the seventh RedHawks goalie ever to record back-to-back shutouts.
Persson’s streak is the second longest of any Miami goalie with consecutive shutouts.
Here are their minutes streaks:
— Miami finally scored on the power play, going 1-for-2 to improve to 6.9 percent. The RedHawks have been outstanding on the penalty kill, however, as they have not allowed a goal on the man-advantage in five games.
MU is 88.9 percent on PK.
THOUGHTS: Honestly, Miami didn’t play well enough to win. Colorado College deserved two points.
At times the RedHawks connected on passes and seemed in sync on the ice. Too often though they were making dangerous passes with no teammate in site, too-fancy plays that only work once a great while or failed on defensive zone clearing attempts, leading to Tigers scoring chances.
Including Colorado College’s lone goal.
A bad clearing attempt by Rourke Russell ultimately led to CC’s equalizer. He played well otherwise, ringing a shot off the post and syncing with classmate Alec Mahalak.
But there were passes that sailed straight across the top of the crease to no in particular, clearing passes with no intended target straight through the slot and an inability to get the puck from one of the points across the blue line through boards battles.
Those issues were keys in this one.
— The Tigers are now 7-2-1 in their last 10 games vs. Miami and finished 1-0-1 in 2020-21. The RedHawks have played poorly against CC, and obviously they have to be able to meet that bar before they hope to again compete at the national level.
— Knies, and to a lesser extent Lown, have been remarkable the past couple of games. They’ve been reunited on a line after playing together most of their first three seasons and developing solid chemistry, and they have accounted for three of Miami’s goalies in its last two games.
— Sounds like the ice was an issue, as Barry mentioned that during a second-intermission interview with MidCo Sports. Pucks did seem to bounce more as the game went on.
— Freshman defenseman Hampus Rydqvist left the game in the second period with an apparent head injury. He has played extremely well this season, and hopefully he returns to the lineup soon.
LINEUP CHANGES: One at forward, one on defense.
Up front, Michael Holland replaced Caleb Rule, and on the blue line, Dylan Moulton dressed in place of Alec Capstick.
This was the first time all season Coach Chris Bergeron has broken the goalie rotation, as he went with Persson for the second straight game.
D-man Bray Crowder was referred to as “injured” in Game 8 and was scratched again in this one. Forwards Scott Corbett and Jack Olmstead were also out for the second straight game after playing in all of Miami’s first seven and are likely banged up.
STANDINGS: Through nine of 10 Pod games, Miami is tied with Western Michigan for last in the NCHC with eight points.
Colorado College has 11 points despite having played just seven games.
FINAL THOUGHTS: To its credit, Colorado College has taken major strides recently, but this was a poor outcome for Miami.
The passing, especially clearing passes, was frustratingly inconsistent, and that’s how the Tigers ended up with 39 shots.
Persson has been amazing. His goals-against average is 1.19. He has a save percentage of .962.
He’s the reason Miami – which is averaging 1.44 goals a game – is 2-6-1 and not 0-9.
But no goalie can sustain those numbers.
The RedHawks have to find a way to generate more offense, or they will have a tough time increasing their win pace the second half of the season.