North Dakota Makes Statement, While MSU, CC Finish Sweeps
Cale Morris stoned Wisconsin super-freshman Cole Caufield on a pair of breakaways in Saturday’s game. The last one was the beginning of the end for the Badgers.
After the Notre Dame goalkeeping made the stop in overtime — aided by defenseman Nate Clurman sweeping a trickling puck away from the goal line — the Irish went the other way, where Alex Steeves‘ long shot found a way through for a 5-4 win. The teams split the weekend series.
“Every time you shoot you’re looking to score so obviously the puck bounces weren’t really going our way tonight and that’s going to happen,” Caufield said. “So you just gotta keep battling, keep doing that and they’ll come. Not too worried about it right now, obviously it’s a tough way to end a game.”
Notre Dame’s offense awoke after getting shut out Friday for its first loss of the season. Trevor Janicke — Notre Dame’s own super-freshman — scored his fifth of the season, just 34 seconds into the game.
It was a back-and-forth game into the second period, when Morris made a stop of Caufield’s first breakaway. Just like in OT, Notre Dame turned around and scored right after, on a deflection by Jesse Lansdell, the first of his collegiate career.
Wisconsin, however, scored twice in the third period to take the lead for the first time, only to see the Irish rally, as it often does, tying it on Colin Theisen’s goal.
“We played well enough to win. We played a great team,” Wisconsin coach Tony Granato said. “There were lots of parts of the game when we fell behind and it looked like they were taking over but we found a way to get back in it.”
Wisconsin heads to Minnesota for a pair next week, while Notre Dame will be at Michigan State.
“It was a great weekend, the atmosphere in the building both nights … was what we were hoping for and they saw great hockey,” Granato said. “Unfortunately tonight we didn’t get that bounce in overtime, but I was proud of the way the guys prepared this week to be ready for it.”
Colorado College 5, St. Cloud State 2
Five Colorado College players scored and Ben Copeland collected a pair of assists to lead the Tigers to a 5-2 victory over St. Cloud State and a weekend road sweep. It was the first sweep of St. Cloud for CC since Dec. 10-11, 2010, and handed the Huskies their first back-to-back losses at home since Nov. 18-19, 2016 vs. North Dakota.
“We played extremely well for six periods. We worked hard all weekend,” CC coach Mike Haviland said. “You go through some adversity, but the guys stepped up. It was really good to see us put back-to-back games together.”
CC took a 3-0 lead in the second period. St. Cloud got one back on the power play, but the Tigers came right back on senior defenseman Kristian Blumenschein’s first goale of the season.
“I thought we were really good in the second period. I like our work ethic and we have some other guys scoring, which is really good to see,” Haviland said.
Nick Halloran added a goal for the Tigers, his third.
“Halloran had his legs going all weekend and looked like the Nick of two years ago.”
The Huskies got it to 4-2 on a power-play goal early in the third by Chase Brand, but momentum was stymied after Brand took a five-minute major penalty a few moments later.
“We’re doing some things that teams losing games do,” SCSU coach Brett Larson. “The positive side, I liked our compete tonight compared to (Friday), but it wasn’t enough. … We need to learn from our mental mistakes. Every weekend there’s guys playing in these moments and shifts they’ve never played in before. Our job as a staff is to keep putting them in there and having the play through it.”
Freshman Joey Lamoreaux made his college debut, replacing David Hrenak in the St. Cloud net after the third CC goal.
CC is over .500 now at 4-3-1, but faces a tough test with two games at Minnesota-Duluth next weekend. The Tigers aren’t home again until a Dec. 14 game against Denver, the back end of a home and home.
“We did all the little things that need to get done to win hockey games. You know you can do it, now we need to continue doing it,” Haviland said.
North Dakota 4, Denver 1
A pair of one-loss teams squared off this weekend in Denver, two of the top teams in the country. North Dakota came in trying to prove its early-season success was no fluke. It came away with a tie (plus extra NCHC point) on Friday, then a dominating 4-1 win Saturday to put all doubts to rest, winning its first series in Denver since 2003.
“It’s kind of a statement to the nation for us. We’re here and we’re here for good,” North Dakota senior Cole Smith said to the Grand Forks Herald.
Smith had a pair of goals in the win. He got things going with a power-play score in the first period. Then, with North Dakota up 2-0, he got a shorthanded goal in the second period to give the Fighting Hawks a 3-0 lead.
That goal came right after Denver coach David Carle had called a timeout. With his team being outplayed, he wanted a chance to get his best players out there, and give his team an opportunity to get back in the game. Instead, things went the other way.
“We called a timeout just to give them a breather. Reminded them of some fundamentals,” Carle said. “At the end of the day, they’re five of our smartest hockey players and trying to get them out there to get a breath and go out and execute and settle things down. Obviously it didn’t work, gave up a breakaway on it. Yeah, it was a disappointing effort all around, an embarrassing game for us.”
Despite the two goals, Smith was almost a goat after taking a five-minute major penalty in the third period, which included an ejection. That gave Denver a 5-on-3 at the time. North Dakota killed off the first penalty, then took another one, creating more 5-on-3 time. The Hawks killed it all off before finally surrendering a goal with 8:17 remaining. But that’s as close as Denver got.
“I liked our start, our first five minutes were good. Then they took over from there,” Carle said. “If we didn’t have the 5-on-3 I’m not sure how much zone time we would’ve had. It was a disappointing effort all around, and unfortunately we weren’t able to execute. Tip your hat to them, they played better.
“We looked a step slow, and our puck support wasn’t as good (as Friday). So, combine those two things with an aggressive D corps and aggressive puck pressure game, it was hard to penetrate their zone. And there was a number of turnovers that they created in the neutral zone.”
Josh Rieger scored his first career goal for North Dakota, despite not originally being in the lineup. He was called to fill-in for Jonny Tychonick, who fell ill, and got on the ice midway through warmups.
Michigan State 3, Michigan 0
Old rivals Michigan and Michigan State were like two ships passing in the night this weekend. Both came in with records two games below .500, but headed on different trajectories. In the end, it was Michigan State which earned a sweep, including a 3-0 win at home Saturday, to move to .500 at 5-5-0. Michigan, meanwhile, is winless in its last seven games, dropped to 3-7-2, and remained winless in the Big Ten.
“We have to find a way to win a hockey game,” Michigan coach Mel Pearson said. “The first 10 minutes of the second period we were really good and all over them. We just cannot score. As much as we work on it, we just can’t put the puck in the net.”
In the seven games without a win, the only game Michigan scored more than twice was Friday, when it lost at home, 4-3, to the Spartans.
Josh Nodler scored early in the first period to give MSU a lead. Austin Kamer and Tommy Apap added goals in the second period.
“Michigan had a little bit going for them in the second when it was 1-0,” Michigan State coach Danton Cole said. “We had to hunker down and get our game back, but I liked the way the guys answered. That’s something we take a lot of pride in here, just being resilient and working hard. It was good to get out on the right side of it, and I was really proud of the way the guys played, both nights.”
Meanwhile, the Spartans kills all five Michigan power plays, and only had one of their own.
“I liked a lot of things tonight but probably the most important for us tonight was the battle and the resiliency,” Cole said. “There were a lot of times we had to answer the battle — that was killing penalties or blocking shot.”
Michigan heads to New Hampshire for a couple of non-league games next weekend, looking for answers.
“Every mistake we make gets magnified,” Pearson said. “It’s a 1-0 game, we lose a faceoff and, bang, it’s in our net just like that, and we had outplayed them significantly in that first 10 minutes of the second period. We are finding ways to lose games. When you can’t score, everything gets magnified and it makes it tough.”
Minnesota-Duluth came to Miami this weekend with a banged up defense, and it showed in Friday’s loss. But the defending champs quickly got it back together Saturday, and came away with a 3-2 win. … Western Michigan had its six-game unbeaten streak snapped in a 6-3 loss to Nebraska-Omaha. UNO’s Kevin Conley had a hat trick and five points. Conley became the ninth Maverick to register five points in a game, the first since David Pope against Miami on Jan. 12, 2018. … Penn State got two goals from Nate Sucese to complete a sweep of Minnesota with a 6-3 win. “The mistakes we made were glaring, and that’s too good of a hockey team to make those mistakes (against),” Minnesota head coach Bob Motzko said. “Tip your hat to Penn State, they have an enormous amount of talent … those guys capitalized when they had the opportunity.”
Originally published at https://www.collegehockeynews.com/news/2019/11/17_Notre-Dame-Wins-OT-Thriller.php