New owners of a No. 1 national ranking and back home at Lynah Rink for the first time this calendar year, Cornell men’s hockey had a chance to pick up another quality win over a nationally-ranked opponent.
Instead, the Red settled for a 2-2 tie with No. 17 Northern Michigan on Friday. Freshman forward Ben Berard’s third-period goal tied the game after the visitors took a one-goal lead in the second period, their second one-tally lead of the contest.
Cornell (12-1-2, 8-1-1 ECAC) used two key penalty kills to stay in the game and mostly controlled play in its offensive zone. Freshman defenseman Travis Mitchell and senior forward Noah Bauld were both tagged with five-minute major penalties and game misconducts after video-reviewed hits.
The Red killed both major penalties, each time drawing a penalty of its own to shorten Northern Michigan’s time on the man advantage.
After Northern Michigan took a first-period lead, sophomore forward Michael Regush scored a goal during 4-on-4 play, which knotted things up at one apiece.
Cornell took control in the second period, but got nothing to show for it. Vincent de Mey scored on a counterattack with 2:51 left in the middle frame to put the visitors ahead until Berard’s power-play tally — the rookie’s fourth goal of the season — tied the game up 3:23 into the third.
Junior goaltender Matt Galajda made 24 saves. Northern Michigan netminder Nolan Kent made 31 stops, keeping the Wildcats in the game despite stretches, especially the first part of the second period, dominated by the home team.
Cornell and Northern Michigan take the ice for game two of their weekend series at 7 p.m. on Saturday at Lynah Rink.