By Kim Wrona
11/21/18 — DeKalb, IL | The DII Huskies hosted the Illinois State University Redbirds for two MACHA Conference games on November 16 and 17 at Leafs Ice Centre in West Dundee, IL. The rivals split the two games leading into the Thanksgiving break.
Senior forward David Madrigal (2 G) and freshman forward Brandon Ledyard (2 A) led the Huskies over the weekend with two points each.
The Redbirds jumped out to a two-goal lead before the five-minute mark of the first period during Friday’s game, but the Huskies quickly answered back. NIU closed its deficit to one goal as Madrigal picked up his 11th goal of the season at 6:32 of the opening frame with assists from senior forward Eric Svejda and Ledyard.
The Huskies tied the game at 9:29 of the first with junior forward Brad Krauser’s sixth tally on the 2018-2019 campaign; the goal was unassisted.
The second period was a scoreless affair, but the third period featured two NIU goals. Senior forward Nick Treiber gave the Huskies their first lead of the game with his 12th marker of the season at 10:58 of the final frame. Freshman forward Tyler Gut picked up the lone assist on the goal.
Madrigal tallied his second of the night and 12th goal of the season with 1:14 to play in regulation with an empty net goal; Ledyard picked up the lone helper on the play. The Huskies recorded a 4-2 victory over the Redbirds while graduate goaltender Stephen Thulin made 33 saves on 35 shots on the evening.
NIU outshot ISU by a 40-35 margin. The Huskies went 0-1 on the power play, but never gave the Redbirds any man advantages to work with during the game.
On Saturday, neither team cracked the scoreboard during the first period, but the Redbirds were the first to do so during the second period. The visitors took a 2-0 lead over NIU before the eight-minute mark of the middle frame.
Senior defenseman Tommy Rhyan netted his fifth goal of the season—an unassisted marker–late in the third period to cut the NIU deficit to one goal, but the Huskies couldn’t make the comeback. The Redbirds scored two empty net goals during the last minute of regulation to take a 4-1 victory over the Huskies.
Thulin made 45 saves on 47 shots in the contest. ISU outshot NIU by a 49-37 margin. The Huskies went 0-4 on the power play, but killed off all five of the Redbirds’ man advantages. NIU now has a record of 6-10-0-0 on the 2018-2019 season.
The next time the DII Huskies take the ice, they’ll be on the road. NIU will travel to The Show-Me State to take on the University of Missouri in two MACHA Conference games. The Huskies and the Tigers will face-off at 7:30 p.m. on November 30 and at 5:30 p.m. on December 1 at Washington Park Ice Arena in Jefferson City, MO.