Denver Defeats Minnesota State 4-3 on Friday night

Denver beat Minnesota State 4-3 on Friday night.

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Final Scoring: Denver Wins 4-3

First Period:

10:18- Nolan Zajac from Matt Tabrum and Quentin Shore 1-0 Denver

Zajac showed some nice hands taking a pass from Tabrum, moving from forehand to backhand and beating the goalie high to the glove side

Second Period:

1:23- Joey LaLeggia from Zac Larraza 2-0 Denver

LaLeggia skated into the zone and fired a high wrist shot from just inside the blue line. It appeared that Cook didn't see the puck cleanly off his stick and was beaten to the glove side.

3:28- Shawn Ostrow from Paul Phillips and Dan Doremus 3-0 Denver

A Paul Phillips shot from the point was deflected by Ostrow in the circles and over Cook's shoulder.

15:43 Jean-Paul LaFontaine unassisted. 3-1 Denver

After a long stretch in the Denver zone, a wraparound attempt by LaFontaine went off the skate of a Denver defender and into the goal.

16:57 Eriah Hayes assisted by Jean-Paul LaFontaine and Brett Knowles 3-2 Denver

Another scramble in front of the net bounced off some bodies and slowly trickled into the net past Brittain.

Third Period:

13:54 Dan Doremus from Shawn Ostrow and Nolan Zajac 4-2 Denver

Ostrow fed the puck from the corner out to Doremus in the high slot. Doremus fired a quick wrist shot over the left shoulder of Williams.

18:09 Jean-Paul LaFontaine from Matt Leitner and Zach Lehrke 4-3 Denver

Leitner fed LaFontaine with a nice feed from behind the net, and LaFontaine one-timed it into the net before Brittain had a chance to react.

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Third Period Notes: Denver Wins 4-3

Scoring:

13:54 Dan Doremus from Shawn Ostrow and Nolan Zajac 4-2 Denver

Ostrow fed the puck from the corner out to Doremus in the high slot. Doremus fired a quick wrist shot over the left shoulder of Williams.

18:09 Jean-Paul LaFontaine from Matt Leitner and Zach Lehrke 4-3 Denver

Leitner fed LaFontaine with a nice feed from behind the net, and LaFontaine one-timed it into the net before Brittain had a chance to react.

Notes:

Minnesota State had an early power play in the third period, and had two or three Grade A opportunities to tie the game but weren't able to capitalize.

Minnesota State also brought more of a physical edge to the third period than they did in the first half of the game, and Denver seemed to struggle with it. The biggest hit was a crushing open ice hit by Max Gaede on Denver's Jarrod Mermis.

Minnesota State controlled play for a large chunk of the third period, but it was Denver that scored the games sixth goal. Another example of Denver making a nice skill play, while Minnesota State couldn't get a puck to bounce into the net off a scramble in front.

Down two goals, Minnesota State pulled Williams with 4:00 remaining in the game. Pulling the goalie earlier and earlier also seems to be a growing trend.

Jean-Paul LaFontaine took a checking from behind major with with 1:26 left in the game. I didn't see the hit in question, but I can say it was a very small player knocking over a very big player.

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First Period Notes; Denver Leads 1-0

Scoring:

10:18- Nolan Zajac from Matt Tabrum and Quentin Shore 1-0 Denver

Zajac showed some nice hands taking a pass from Tabrum, moving from forehand to backhand and beating the goalie high to the glove side

Shots were 9-5 in Denver's favor.

Notes:

Minnesota State caught a huge break in the first minute of the game when defenseman Zach Palmquist appeared to hit a Denver player from behind into the boards, but was only assessed two minutes for checking from behind instead of a five-minute major. Not only would it have been a tough kill, but perhaps more importantly, Minnesota State would have basically had to skate the whole game with five defensemen.

Denver controlled the first half of the period, thanks in large part to three straight MSU penalties to start the game, but Minnesota State drew the better of the scoring chances, including a 2-on-1 and a breakaway that they didn't convert on while shorthanded. Brett Knowles hit the outside of the post on his breakaway.

Nolan Zajac had a nice period. On the shift before his goal, he also made a nice move in the offensive zone to create a shot for himself. My big knock on him in the past is that I felt he was a guy that contributed to the offense, but never really created offense, but that play, combined with the goal are starting to make me reconsider that.

As you'd expect from a team that's pretty loaded on the back line, Denver likes to give their defensemen a lot of freedom to rush up the ice.

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