The University of Minnesota Duluth defeated North Dakota on Saturday night by a score of 6-3 to earn the weekend split at Ralph Engelstad Arena in Grand Forks, ND.
First off, a big congratulations to Dave Hakstol of North Dakota for coaching his 400th game as North Dakota's leader. Only Nebraska-Omaha's Dean Blaise who coached 410 games at North Dakota and John "Gino" Gasparini who coached 664 games sit in front of Hakstol.
Although North Dakota couldn't finish the weekend with a sweep, it was a very entertaining game to watch. Both teams played execellent hockey both nights, but special teams decided the winners this weekend, and on Saturday, it was Minnesota Duluth.
"I thought both teams played pretty hard," said UND freshman Paul LaDue. "Obviously there is stuff we need to work on as a team. We had a few breakdowns and they capitalized on those chances."
Minnesota Duluth was able to build on their power play, which struggled during the beginning of the year, scoring two goals on the man advantage by Alex Iafallo and Austin Farley. Dillon Simpson also recorded a single power play goal for UND, but the period would end in favor of the Bulldogs, 3-1.
"We finished all of our chances that we could," said UMD freshman Iafallo. "Everybody was working and moving together really well."
Both teams were members of the nation's top three penalty kills before this weekend. Now, after both North Dakota and Minnesota Duluth scored three times throughout the weekend, they sit a little bit lower.
"Our penalty killing needs to sharpen up a little bit," LaDue went on to say. "We've been good all year but we need to get back to it and start blocking more shots."
UND goaltender Clarke Saunders, who started the game, was replaced to begin the second period by Zane Gothberg. Saunders made 7 saves while allowing the 3 goals, 2 of which were on the power play.
LaDue scored his very first goal of his collegiate career in the second period to make the game a one-goal battle, but freshman Sammy Spurrell buried a Charlie Sampair rebound in the final two minutes of the second period to give the Dogs the 2-goal lead going back into the locker room.
Adam Krause scored his third goal of the season and the weekend to open up the gates of the third period, and Bryn Chyzyk would follow with his first of the season, but it was Joe Basaraba putting the nail in the coffin by scoring an empty-netter with just over a minute remaining in the game. Basaraba's 3rd goal of the season closed out the game's scoring, giving the 6-3 win to the Bulldogs and holding North Dakota winless on Saturday nights.
"I thought we played a good game and I liked how our guys played this weekend," said UMD coach Scott Sandelin. "We got off to a good start and got the lead, which was important, and then we built off of it. It was nice to give Aaron (Crandall) some offensive help because he's played great for us."
1st Period - (7:28) UMD PP Alex Iafallo from Joe Basaraba and Willie Raskob
1st Period - (10:18) UND PP Dillon Simpson from Rocco Grimaldi and Drake Caggiula
1st Period - (17:32) UMD Adam Krause from Tony Cameranesi and Austin Farley
1st Period - (19:49) UMD PP Austin Farley from Willie Raskob and Tony Cameranesi
2nd Period - (7:08) UND Paul LaDue from Mitch MacMillan and Wade Murphy
2nd Period - (18:48) UMD Sammy Spurrell and Charlie Sampair
3rd Period - (6:30) UMD Adam Krause from Willie Raskob and Tony Cameranesi
3rd Period - (14:42) UND Bryn Chyzyk from Rocco Grimaldi and Dillon Simpson
3rd Period - (18:58) UMD Joe Basaraba from Alex Iafallo
- Friday night was Dave Hakstol's 400th game as North Dakota's head coach. Only Dean Blaise (410) and John "Gino" Gasparini (664) have led North Dakota longer.
- UMD's 6-foot-2, 200 pound sophomore Willie Corrin led the series in blocked shots with 6 of his own, which all came on Friday night. UMD led the series 35 to 20 in overall blocked shots.
- Mark MacMillan did not return for the third period. Hakstol said he would need some time to rest, and took 2 shots while skating at a -2 in the first two periods of play.
- Freshman Willie Raskob added 4 assists to his resume this weekend, including 3 in tonight's win.
- North Dakota has yet to win a game this season on Saturday.
- The Bulldogs have battled only against Michigan Tech (225 games) more than they have against North Dakota (221).
- Both Dillon Simpson and Rocco Grimaldi had multiple tallies on the night for North Dakota
- UMD netminder Aaron Crandall has now made a career high 6 consecutive starts, holding a 3-3-0 record and a .908 save percentage over that period.
Official Three Stars
1. Adam Krause - F - UMD
Going into Saturday's game, Krause had notched three goals in his career - a shorthanded goal, a power play goal, and an even strength goal. The junior finished yesterday's game with two goals and more importantly, played a very aggressive game for the Bulldogs.
2. Tony Cameranesi - F - UMD
Cameranesi's impressive ability to create scoring oppurtunites in tight places earned him 3 assists on Saturday night's game. The sophomore now has 7 points on the year, including 6 assists.
3. Austin Farley - F - UMD
Farley let loose on Saturday night in the an impressive manner. The sophomore tallied both a goal and an assist before the game ended, extending his resume to 5 points on the season.
MINNESOTA DULUTH'S SATURDAY GAME AGAINST THE GOPHER IS MOVED TO SUNDAY
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Matt Christians covers Minnesota Duluth and the NCHC for SB Nation and College Hockey News. You can also give him a follow here -> Follow @matt_christians