MEQUON, Wis. – An improbable comeback was nearly completed on Saturday afternoon for Concordia University Wisconsin after they scored four unanswered goals in the third period, but No. 7/8 Adrian College scored the game-winning goal with 1:45 to play for a 6-5 victory.
The Falcons played their strongest hockey in some time at the Ozaukee Ice Center, after finding themselves down 5-1 with just under 18 minutes to play in the Midwest Collegiate Hockey Association contest.
Freshmen Buster Hebda (Firestone, Colo.) and Chris Hughes (Dundee, Mich.) led CUW with two points apiece, while five players each scored a goal in the difficult loss. The Falcons (6-17-0, 6-12-0 MCHA) did outshoot the Bulldogs 29-26 and each team scored two power-play goals.
The game appeared to be a repeat of Friday's 6-1 defeat with AC building a comfortable lead after two periods of play. However, Saturday was a much different story down the stretch with CUW not backing down to the Bulldogs and their winning streak, the longest in the nation.
Freshman James Poston (Sylvania, Ohio) began the rally with the first of three even-strength markers midway through the third period. Hughes added a goal of his own just over a minute later and the momentum was rolling in the Falcons favor.
The Bulldogs called a timeout to regroup, but it didn't matter because freshman Travis Payne (Gaylord, Mich.) slammed home another goal with less than six minutes to play in the contest.
Following an AC penalty for too many men on the ice, freshman Dan Szerlip (Newton, Mass.) scored a game-tying goal with two minutes and 38 seconds left on the clock. From then on, it appeared to be a race to the end of regulation, but the Bulldogs' Justin Basso quieted the crowd with a goal at 18:45 in the third stanza.
Head coach Jasen Wise gathered his team after calling a timeout with 53.4 seconds to play with the hopes of pulling of an upset, but to no avail.
CUW concludes the regular season with a home-and-home MCHA series against Marian University. The Falcons and Sabres will play on Friday at 7 p.m. in Fond du Lac, Wis., prior to competing in Mequon at the OIC at 7 p.m.