HOPKINS -- A major penalty with under six minutes to play, and a minor penalty which caused a 5-on-3 power play, threatened a five-goal Benilde-St. Margaret's lead.
Three goals in just over three minute cut the Red Knights' lead over Hopkins to 5-3 but an empty-net goal by Jerry Calengor with 59.6 seconds to play sealed BSM's 6-3 win over the Royals.
BSM got off to a fast start when Connor Mayer's pass from his own zone was placed on the stick of Peter Moran as he crossed the Hopkins blueline and, for the third time this season, the Red Knights' third-line center gave his team a 1-0 lead, five minutes, 23 seconds into the game.
Just 43 seconds later, Jack Qualen made it a 2-0 lead when he banged home a loose puck for his second goal of the season.
The only goal of the second period came on a freak play as Dylan Hewitt chased down a loose puck in his own zone and was hauled to the ice by the Royals' Ryan St. Clair.
With a delayed penalty being called, Hopkins goalie Parker Swanson misinterpreted the referee's delayed penalty signal and, apparently believing the penalty was on the Red Knights, headed towards his bench.
With Swanson racing towards his bench, Nick Austin picked up the loose puck next to his own goal and, seeing the empty net, skated into open ice and flipped the puck the length of the ice to extend his goal-scoring streak to four games.
Red Knight scoring leader Cade Gleekel made it a 4-0 game when he tipped Austin's shot 2:27 into the final period and Calengor buried a pass from Jacob Holmers with 9:18 to play to give the visitors a five-goal lead.
The wild finish began with 5:42 to play when Luke Horton was given a five-minute major penalty for checking from behind and, less than 30 seconds later, Jack Sweeney got Hopkins on the scoreboard.
With 4:43 to play in the game, Calengor was whistled for a tripping penalty and, with Swanson pulled for an extra attacker, Riley Martin took advantage of the 6-on-3 advantage to cut the Red night lead to 5-2.
With 2:04 to play, and with Hopkins still on a 5-on-4 power play due to the major penalty, Nate Nelsen took a hooking penalty and the teams skated 4-on-4.
It took just 17 seconds to the hosts to take advantage of the situation as Martin broke into the right faceoff circle and slipped a shot underneath BSM goalie Ryan Bischel to cut the lead to two goals.
Hopkins pulled Swanson again after winning the ensuing faceoff and getting the puck deep in the Red Knight zone. However, Holmers caused a turnover and Calengor grabbed the loose puck and flipped the puck out of his own but it had enough momentum to enter the Hopkins goal to finish the scoring for the night.
Bischel stopped 19 of the 22 shots he faced to earn his state-leading 10th win of the season as BSM had a 34-22 advantage in shots on goal.
Four players had multiple-point games for the Red Knights, led by Horton's three-assist performance. Calengor had two goals while Austin had a goal and an assist and Holmers added two assists.
BSM returns from the Christmas break, Monday, when they take part in the Sports Authority Holiday Classic at the St. Louis Park Rec Center.
The Red Knights opening game, Monday, is a 7:30 p.m. game with No. 8 Lakeville North. They follow that with a 5 p.m. meeting, Tuesday, versus No. 13 Elk River before facing Maple Grove, Wednesday, at 5 p.m.
Complete statistics for tonight's game are available here.
Nick Austin extended his goal-scoring streak to four games and was on the ice for all six BSM goals.
Tag(s): Benilde-St. Margaret's