A minor cross-checking penalty kicked off a flurry of offense that made the difference for Minot State University on Saturday at John L. Wilson Arena.
University of Jamestown senior forward Tyler Chavez-Leech sent Minot's Grayson Neufeld to the ice near the UJ point five minutes into the second period of a scoreless game, sending the dominos in motion. Chavez-Leech was escorted to the penalty box and the Beavers proceeded to rifle off three goals in a span of 3 minutes, 25 seconds in a 5-1 win over the ACHA Division I Jimmies.
"Referring hasn't been great," said UJ hockey coach Dean Stork, whose Jimmies faced Minot for the sixth time and fell to 5-6-3 overall. "It is what it is."
Minot's Breyden Pawluk tallied with seven seconds remaining on the power play and even-strength goals sent into the mesh by Nick Doyle and Adam Wowryk -- all between 13:09 and 9:44 of the second -- had the Beavers leading 3-0 to start the final period.
A Jordan Kromm goal for UJ in the third was sandwiched between tallies by Minot's Justin Metcalf (power play) and Drew Carter. The Beavers (7-1-1) have only faced UJ and Williston so far this season, producing four wins, one loss and a shootout victory over the Jimmies.
The two teams combined for 26 minor penalties Saturday, with UJ going 0-for-9 on the power play. The Beavers outshot the Jimmies 36-25, with UJ senior goalie Tyson Brouwer recording 31 saves.
The Jimmies are a young hockey team this season and were missing key freshmen forwards Bo Cornell, Jed Butler and Marquez Ginger, as well as senior defenseman Vladislav Zamzhytski, Saturday night. Stork's four lines included five freshman forwards and four freshmen defensemen.
"We gotta get stronger, not only physically but mentally right now," Stork said. "It's tough when you're playing a Minot team that's a little bit bigger and stronger; a little more maturity. But, hey, it's a process.
"Sometimes the process will overcome the outcome, so hopefully these kids will learn from it."
UJ senior captain Jason Richter was paired with freshman forwards Morgan Venne and Reid Wilson against the Beavers, while the Chavez-Leech line included sophomore Adian Potas and freshman Logan Berggren, who, along with sophomore forward Quin Garrison, assisted Kromm's goal in the third.
Garrison, from Prince George, British Columbia, has scored three goals against Minot this season. Kromm is a freshman center from Calgary, Alberta.
Jamestown resumed play Friday for the first time since Nov. 15, falling at Minot 3-1. The Beavers are currently on the schedule six more times after the holidays.
"It's about the one-on-one battles. In the corners, net fronts and gray areas. Not a lot of changing done," Stork said. "Special teams is key when you wanna make some adjustments, but it's a lot of gritting your teeth and winning that stick battle, winning that puck race."
Jamestown's Division I team isn't scheduled to play again until traveling to Fremont, Nebraska, on Jan. 8-9 to play Midland University. The Jimmies' D-II team is scheduled to play the University of Mary on Dec. 12 (away) and Dec. 13 (home).
"We're pretty fortunate to be playing hockey with the virus going around, so I've got no complaints," Stork said. "Just trying to keep those boys happy playing some games ... because if we're not playing they're not gonna be here."
Minot State University 5, University of Jamestown 1
MSU 0 3 2 -- 5
UJ 0 0 1 -- 1
1. M, Breyden Pawluk (Davis Sheldon, Carter Barley), PP, 6:51; 2. M, Nick Doyle (Eric Soar), 8:27; 3. M, Adam Wowryk (Burley, Dylan Cassie), 10:16.
4. M, Justin Metcalf (Cassie, Doyle), PP, 7:51. 5. J, Jordan Kromm (Logan Berggren, Quin Garrison), 11:01; 6. M, Drew Carter (Jagger Thiessen), 13:36.
Goalie saves: M, Troy Martyniuk 9-9-6--24. J, Tyson Brouwer 11-10-10--31.
Penalties: M, 14 for 28 minutes. J, 12 for 24 minutes.
Records: Minot 7-1-1. Jamestown 5-6-3.