By RON DEUTER
IRON MOUNTAIN - Marquette, firing 40 shots to Kingsford's 17, skated to a 3-1 Great Lakes Hockey Conference victory Thursday evening at Mountain View Ice Arena.
Theresa Proudfit/The Daily News Photo
Kingsford’s Andrew Zander (19) and Alex Wiitanen (10) battle in the corner with Marquette’s Jake Phillips during the first period Thursday at Mountain View Ice Arena.
The Flivvers, stuck in a seven-game skid, trailed just 1-0 entering the third period thanks in part to the work of Wes Paupore who totaled 38 saves for the night.
"Wes played a heck of a game," Flivvers coach Jim Peterson said. "He kept us in there, again."
The Flivvers had a prime chance to even score midway through the third when two Redmen were sent to the box for minor penalties, but Kingsford managed just one shot on net during the two-man advantage.
"We don't have quick enough puck movement on the power play," Peterson said. "We are not sure where to go with the puck. You have to know your next move right away."
Soon after the penalties, Marquette added an insurance marker when a shot by Cam Verigin made it through, possibly deflecting off a Flivver stick at the last moment.
Kingsford drew within one about a minute later when Alex Wiitanen crossed the blue line and fired through the legs of Marquette keeper Travis Cameron.
Paupore went to the bench for the final minute, but the Flivvers struggled to keep the puck in the Redmen's zone and were unable to notch the equalizer. Marquette's Alex Zerbel sealed the win with an empty net marker with 23 seconds left.
"We continued to turn the puck over at the blue line," Peterson said. It's still just the little things. We're fanning on the puck, and we're panicking in certain situations."
Marquette, after out-shooting Kingsford 19 to 5 in the first period, finally broke through in the second. A shot by Dalton Duquette was initially turned away by Paupore, but the rebound to the opposite side was cleaned up by Jake Phillips.
"There were a lot of rebounds," Marquette coach Doug Garrow said. "Wes made a lot of good first saves, and Kingsford did good job of keeping our guys away from the front of the net. The rebounds were there, we just couldn't get to them. As the game wore on we had more opportunities for second and third shots."
Marquette, hosting Escanaba Monday, improved to 3-7-2.
"It's been a struggle this year," Garrow said. "We've had a lot of injuries. We're getting a few guys back, and we're getting better. We've just been finding ways to lose. Confidence wise, it's a little fragile sometimes.
"It's a learning process, and hopefully we can build from tonight's win."
Kingsford slipped to 2-7-0 (0-2-0) and heads to Escanaba Tuesday.
"We just have to keep plugging away," Peterson said.
Marquette 0 1 2 - 3
Kingsford 0 0 1 - 1
M - Jake Phillips (Dalton Duquette, Tony Fedrizzi), 5:29.
M - Cam Verigin (unassisted), 11:18.
K - Alex Wiitanen (unassisted), 12:03.
M - Alex Zerbel (Chris Amundsen), EN, 16:37.
Goalie saves - M: Travis Cameron 5-6-5 - 16 ; K: Paupore 19-8-10 - 37.