Yellowjacket Sam Sterne faces opponents in the rink.

Photo by Holden Law

Three times the Yellowjacket men’s hockey team fell behind Friday night, and three times it was able to come back and tie the game. Unfortunately for them, Saint Mary’s moved ahead a fourth time and the Yellowjackets couldn’t get the equalizer when they needed it most.

The Yellowjackets scored once in each period, but it wasn’t enough to overcome a slow start. Saint Mary’s picked up the 4-3 victory Friday at the SMU Ice Arena in Winona, Minn. For the Yellowjackets (1-1-0, 0-0-0 WIAC), the loss evened their record on the season and snapped the program’s five-game winning streak dating back to last season.

As the second period unfolded the Yellowjackets began to find their stride, and after a stretch of extended pressure, they were able to pull even with the Cardinals. Dylan Johnson, who leads the Yellowjackets in assists, took a shot from the left side that hit traffic in front, but the carom went right to Chad Lopez in the slot, and he buried his second goal of the season to tie it at 9:41.

Saint Mary’s again had the answer and regained the lead late in the period. This time it was Trevor Schroder scoring, as he beat Hektor high on the short side from a sharp angle on the left wing. Early in the third period the Yellowjackets came out firing on all cylinders, and for the third time in the game drew even.

Reed Stark moved the puck to Artur Terchiyev at the left point, and he slid it to Charles Martin, whose shot got through a screen and beat Ruskowski to tie the game 3-3 at 5:48. But as they did all night long, Saint Mary’s broke the tie. Ryan Stoynich took a shot from the left circle that Hektor stopped, but he couldn’t keep control of the shot and it got across the line to put the Cardinals back in front.

Any chances for a Yellowjacket rally were snuffed out when they were called for a penalty with just 2:16 to go in the third period, and the Cardinals held them off for the win.