FAIRBANKS, Ak-The Nanooks gave their seniors a proper send off before game one of the Governor's Cup but the best send off was at the end of the game. Junior Cody Kunyk scored the game winning goal at the 2:50 mark in overtime to secure the last regular season home victory of 2013 for UAF.
It was an emotinal beginning to the night as the seven Nanook seniors took the final regualr season home skate around the Carlson Center as fans cheered them as they past. The Governor of Alaska dropped the ceremonial puck and it was time for hockey. The game was very gritty, physical, and chippy as the best rivalries are.
To make better the home team struck first with a goal by Garrick Perry, the sophomore's second goal of the year, which was assisted by freshmen Tyler Morley. That goal was at 17:31 of the second period.
But the Seawolves would respond with Alex Gellert's equalizer coming in the third period at the 12:48 mark on the power play goal.
Goals were hard to come by as both defenses and goalies put on a show. John Kenney made 27 saves for the Nanooks. 14 of Keeney's saves were in the third period alone. Also between the pipes all night was Chris Kamal of UAA who faced 41 shots and stopped 39. Kamal made a game winning save attempt with 17.9 seconds left in regulation but the puck got under his pads and everyone on the packed Carlson Center thought that was the game winner but the Kamal was saved by the whistle as the referess blew the whistle before the puck crossed the line. The refs had to clear bodies from the goal area because it was a mess of magled limbs and bodies sprawling on each other trying to score or prevent a score. That wouldn't be the final goal. No that was given up in overtime.
Cody Kunky said he thought about passing it to teammate Andy Taranto as he was bearing down on Kamal from the left slot. Who could blame him as Taranto has made a career out of making clutch goals but Kunyk read Kamal and decided to call his own number and his shot made it passed Kamal on the right side and the game was over halfway through the extra session.
The Nanooks now have four straight Governor's Cup wins. The teams will decide it tomorrow in Anchorage at 7:07 in the regualr season finale.
The Nanooks will have a second season as they host Michigan State in round one of the CCHA Playoffs. The last time those teams met it was a split and an altercation in the last game. It's playoff time so this series will be one to see. It starts next weekend in the Carlson Center.