Kayla Faasse

UNLV faced off against the Grand Valley State Lakers in its first game of the ACHA National Tournament and rallied from a two-goal deficit to win 4-3 in overtime.

Between the pipes, Landon Pavlisin made his 17th appearance for the Rebels while Devin Naidow made his 32nd appearance in net for the Lakers, his second straight for the tournament.

Early on, Gage Thrall scored an unassisted shot against Pavlisin to put the Lakers up 1-0.

Five minutes later, freshman Jaxsen Wyatt put the Rebels on the scoreboard, blasting the puck to the top shelf assisted by Kyle Quinn and Paxton Malone. The remainder of the period saw no scores, keeping it even at one entering the first intermission. With 37 seconds left on the clock, GVSU’s Bryan Clahassey committed a 10-minute misconduct.

The second period saw two goals from the Lakers, the first at 4:48 from Zachary Kippe and one at 19:26 from Zachary Borchardt to take a 3-1 lead.

Andrew Dundas took a two minute penalty for hooking 6:10 into the third period, putting the Rebels on a power play and giving them the opportunity to cut into the Lakers’ lead. It did not take long for UNLV to use the extra man advantage as Caleb Strong sent one past Naidow for a goal, assisted by Max Johnson and Robert McCollum.

Less than four minutes later at even strength, Strong continued the momentum shooting a one-timer to tie the game 3-3. The score was assisted by Max and Alec Johnson. Neither team saw any goals for the remainder of the game, sending it into overtime.

During regulation time, UNLV outshot GVSU 41-28. The Rebels killed off five penalties, while the Lakers killed off seven.

After a 15 minute intermission, the two teams went on to play until a score with a 20 minute overtime period on the clock. Pavlisin made 11 saves, including a 1-on-1 breakaway glove save to give the Rebels a fighting chance.

Gunnar Smith connected with McCollum, and from the blue line, McCollum sniped the puck on the left top shelf scoring the game winning goal. The victory was met with McCollum skating behind and jumping into Palivin’s arms before being joined by the rest of the Rebels.

UNLV will advance in the tournament, competing against the winner of Liberty v. Pittsburgh (Saturday @ 10:15 a.m. EST). The contest will take place on Sunday, March 19 at 10:15 a.m. EST streamed through HockeyTV.

Picture Credits: David Herman