BOWLING GREEN, Ohio - Bowling Green's hard work and solid play were rewarded for the second straight night Saturday.
The Falcons completed a sweep of their Western Collegiate Hockey Association best-of-3 quarterfinal series, posting a 5-2 win over Michigan Tech in the Ice Arena.
Adam Berkle scored twice and Ryan Carpenter added a goal and three assists for the Falcons, who built a 3-0 lead after two periods and never allowed Tech closer than two goals in the final 20 minutes.
BG also received goals from Matt Pohlkamp and Marcus Perrier, and two assists from Dan DeSalvo to advance to the WCHA Final Five at Van Andel Arena in Grand Rapids, Mich.
BG, which has won five straight to improve to 18-14-6 overall, faces No. 19 Minnesota State (24-13-1) at 2 p.m. in the semifinals.
"We played well," said BG coach Chris Bergeron, whose team advanced to its league semifinals for the second time in the last three seasons. "We got a couple lucky bounces, but we deserved those bounces. We played hard against a really good team. All in all, from start to finish, it was a pretty good game."
The Falcons held a 34-30 edge in shots, thanks to an effective forecheck that enabled them to generate scoring chances and play the game in their offensive zone.
BG also defended well, keeping Tech's quality scoring chances to a minimum.
But it was far from easy.
Tech - facing an end to its season after Friday's 2-1 loss - battled hard and never quit. The Huskies (14-19-7) carried the play during most of the first period.
But the Falcons finished the period with a 2-0 lead, thanks to goals from Pohlkamp at 14:35 and Berkle during a 5-on-3 power play at 19:01. The goals both resulted from four-way tic-tac-toe plays.
"A first period that was 50-50 at best, if not tilted in their favor a little bit, coming out 2-0 ahead was huge," Bergeron said.
Pohlkamp fired the puck into the top right corner of the net from the inside of the right circle after taking Carpenter's perfect cross-ice pass.
Berkle then was parked on the right side of the crease to fire in the rebound of Carpenter's shot for a 2-0 lead.
The Huskies had appeared to tie the game on Blake Pietila's power-play goal at 17:05, but the goal was waved off because of a holding penalty on Tech's Reid Sturos. Tech's Cliff Watson then was called for slashing at 18:07 and Berkle scored during the 5-on-3.
"There were some critical moments in this game that just didn't go our way," Tech coach Mel Pearson said. "When we got the penalty and didn't get the goal in the first period was a real turning point. They ended up getting the 5-on-3 power play and the next goal, and it's tough to get down on the road and try to claw your way back."
"I like that we battled," Pearson added. "The effort was there. We just didn't get the bounces. Credit BGSU. There's a reason they finished third in our league."
Perrier's slap shot from the top of the left circle gave BG a 3-0 lead at 13:20 of the second period.
Tech closed within two goals on Sturos' power-play goal 29 seconds into the third period, but Carpenter restored BG's three-goal lead just 1:43 later.
"It was a huge goal," Berkle said of Carpenter's goal. "They're excited they just scored and have a little bit of momentum, but we want to get out there and take that momentum right back ... just put a lot of pressure on them."
Tech later closed to within 4-2 at 8:42 of the third period, but Berkle's empty-net goal at 18:26 clinched the win. BG also killed off a Tech power play with 6:44 remaining.