by Blake Theisen / Sports Director / @blake_theisen
Nick Perbix led the way for St. Cloud State on Friday night to an 11-1 route of NCHC foe Miami of Ohio.
Perbix, who was recently named to Team USA for next month’s Olympics, put together a record setting night. The senior tied multiple single game school records that have stood since at least 2000. His 5 assists tied him with Brandon Sampair, who accomplished the feat against Minnesota on March 18th, 2000, and his 6 points put him into a 5-way tie for most in a single game. His 6-point effort was the first by a Husky since 1993.
Junior forward Zach Okabe opened the floodgates for the Huskies just 1:58 into the game. Okabe would add a second goal later in the first period. He finished as the only Husky with multiple goals on the night.
The Huskies relentless pressure and depth pushed them to a 4-1 first period lead.
St. Cloud would continue that pressure for the entire night. Scoring five goals in the middle period and two more in the third. They scored in nearly every fashion possible. Even strength, on the power-play, short handed, it didn’t matter for SCSU as they tormented the Redhawks.
“An embarrassing effort on our part,” said Miami head coach, Chris Bergeron. “They beat us in every aspect of the game. Just like at 5-on-5, our so called top guys get scored on 3-on-5 and 4-on-5. That’s an effort and a care thing. We just didn’t have enough people that cared tonight.”
Miami’s lone goal came in the first period from forward Monte Graham to pull the Redhawks within a goal at 2-1, but Sam Hentges regained the momentum for the cardinal and black just a minute and 15 seconds later.
“That was probably the turning point of the game,” said Huskies coach Brett Larson. “They got some momentum and life. We were getting off our game a bit. Getting that goal right back turned to momentum right back to us.”
David Hrenak stopped 13 of 14 shots in the game for St. Cloud and earned his 11th win of the season. Miami goaltender, Ludvid Persson, played the entire game and surrendered 11 goals on 42 shots.
The records continued to pile up on Saturday night as the Huskies picked up another dominant NCHC victory over the Miami Redhawks.
After scoring 11 goals the night prior, it would have been fair to question if the Huskies had any goals left in the tank. If you asked that question, they quickly proved you wrong.
Like Friday night, St. Cloud got started early and often. Sophomore forward Veeti Miettinen continued his recent stretch of good play when he opened the scoring with a power play goal 7:20 into the first period. As has been the case with Miettinen this year, his goals have come in pairs of two. He double dipped just over two minutes later on a soft wrist shot that beat Miami goaltender Ludvig Persson on his glove side.
Kevin Fitzgerald and Easton Brodzinski entered the fray with record setting goals themselves.
The always humble Fitzgerald, who scored twice on Saturday, set career highs in goals with his 10th and 11th of the season and points, climbing to 25 with at least 12 games to go.
“Playing with Micah (Miller) and Kups (Kyler Kupka), you see how hard they work and how great of players they are,” said Fitzgerald.
Brodzinski meanwhile, who scored on a penalty shot in the second period, moved past his brother Jonny and now sits tied for 6th all time in program history with 66 career goals.
With the 8-0 win on Saturday, coupled with the 11-1 route the night prior, the Huskies set an NCHC and D-1 era program record for most goals in a series with 19. And the did it with ease, passing the previous record of 16 set in 2015 vs. Western Michigan.
David Hrenak made 14 saves earning his 2nd shutout of the season and adding to his school record with the 13th of his career. Ludvid Persson for Miami stopped 36 of 44 shots.
St. Cloud State earned it’s first 6-point weekend sweep in the NCHC this season. They currently sit in 5th place with 18 points.
Things will get much more difficult next weekend for St. Cloud State when they head to Grand Forks to take on North Dakota.
“They (the players) know where they’re going next weekend and they know how fun it is going in there and the battle it’s going to be,” said Larson following Saturdays win. “Just like every other week in this league, we’re gonna have to be even better next weekend.”
The Huskies split with North Dakota in early December when the Fighting Hawks visited St. Cloud. The Hawks currently sit ranked 10/11th in the nation. They were swept this last weekend on the road versus Western Michigan.
Puck drop for Friday night’s matchup is set for 7:00, Saturday for 6:00. Both games can be heard on 88.1 fm KVSC with pregame coverage starting 30 minutes prior to puck drop.