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Ben Karkela, Published February 20 2011

Men's hockey: Pipers pan Concordia’s chances at MIAC top seed

A single regular-season game can hold significant consequences.

Concordia, vying for its first Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference regular-season men’s hockey championship since 1986-87, fell short with a 7-4 loss to Hamline at the Moorhead Sports Center on Saturday.

The Pipers’ victory sealed the No. 1 seed with 22 points heading into the MIAC playoffs. Concordia would have earned the No. 1 seed with a win on Saturday, but instead settles for the No. 3 seed with 18 points.

“That’s how our conference is,” Concordia head coach Chris Howe said. “It’s really tight with good players and good teams. Only five teams make the playoffs, so it’s an accomplishment just getting in.”

Jordan Van Gilder paved the way for the Pipers win with a hat trick, including the game-deciding goal 1 minute and 8 seconds into the third period.

After the puck was dumped into the Cobbers’ zone, Hamline’s Danny Vranek came up with the loose puck. He redirected the puck across the crease to Van Gilder, who shot it high into the open net.

“I just played my same game and pucks went in the net,” Van Gilder said. “Some days they go in, some days they don’t. Fortunately, today they went in the net.”

Van Gilder’s goal broke a 4-4 tie. He put the game out of reach nearly 12 minutes later by firing a missile from the point that Cobbers goaltender Kelly Andrew could not stop.

“Last night, I feel we didn’t play our best game and tonight we gave it our all,” Van Gilder said.

The Cobbers scored their first goal when Braden Rahman lifted a high shot over Pipers goalie Beau Christian in the second period. Rahman’s goal came less than a minute after Brian Arrigoni scored for Hamline.

After both teams traded goals, Pat Deitz reignited Concordia’s comeback attempt after taking a feed from Nick Thielen and scoring on a low shot from the center of the left circle.

Rahman, Christian, Dietz and Thielen are among the former Moorhead High School players that played in the game.

“I ended up having a lot of time with the puck,” said, Deitz, who had a goal and two assists. “I was looking for a pass first, but it wasn’t there. I threw it on net and luckily it went in.”

FIRST PERIOD: 1, H, Mattson (Burgau), 13:15.

SECOND PERIOD: 2, H, Arrigoni (Kupperman, Lundbohm), 3:45. 3, CC, Rahman (Deitz, Galt), 4:31. 4, H, Burgau (Mattson, Tavis), 5:44. 5, CC, Suderman (Deitz, Thielen), 10:44 (pp). 6, H, Van Gilder (Arrigoni), 11:46 (sh). 7, CC, Deitz (Thielen, Galt), 14:53 (pp). 8, CC, Payne (Wheeler, Thielen), 16:28.

THIRD PERIOD: 9, H, Van Gilder (Vranek), 1:08. 10, H, Van Gilder (Scattarelli, Bereguer), 12:03. 11, H, Arrigoni (Fahnhorst), 18:12 (en).

SAVES: H, Christian 7-8-11–26. CC, Andrew 13-12-4–29.

Readers can reach Forum reporter

Ben Karkela at (701) 241-5549