Saturday, November 2, 2019 Scores
Of the five National Collegiate Hockey Conference (NCHC) teams in action Saturday night, none of them came away with a loss, as two earned wins and three settled for ties, including the lone conference game Saturday. Western Michigan and Colorado College skated to an entertaining 4-4 overtime tie, before the Broncos bagged the extra standings point in a shootout. Top-ranked Denver blanked Niagara, 4-0, to complete a sweep and remain perfect on the season, while No. 14/14 North Dakota stayed perfect at home with a 3-1 win over Michigan Tech in the U.S. Hockey Hall of Fame Game. Elsewhere, No. 16 St. Cloud State played to a back-and-forth 5-5 overtime tie with Princeton.
After Western Michigan (3-3-2, 1-0-1-1 NCHC) rallied for a win on Friday, the Broncos once again used a comeback to collect two points at Colorado College (2-3-1, 0-1-1-0 NCHC) Saturday as the teams tied 4-4. The Tigers scored twice in the second period to take a 4-3 lead, but freshman defenseman Ronnie Attard tallied his second goal of the night, for his first multi-goal game, with 24 seconds remaining in regulation to pull WMU even with an extra attacker. After scoreless 5-on-5 and 3-on-3 overtimes, the Broncos won the sudden-death shootout in the second round after both shooters converted in round one. Redshirt sophomore forward Bailey Conger paced CC’s offense with two goals and an assist, while junior forward Ethen Frank dished out three helpers for WMU, which took five of six points on the weekend.
Top-ranked Denver (8-0-0) remained perfect on the season with a 4-0 blanking of Niagara (0-6-0), capping a weekend sweep. The Pioneers outshot the Purple Eagles, 47-16, but didn’t find the back of the net until junior forward Jake Durflinger tallied the game-winner in the second period. Sophomore forward Brett Stapley then tacked on a short-handed goal in the third period to make it 2-0, while DU added two empty-netters late to seal the win. Sophomore goalie Michael Corson earned his first career shutout with a 16-save performance.
For the second straight year, No. 14/14 North Dakota (5-1-1) won the U.S. Hockey Hall of Fame Game, knocking off Michigan Tech (3-4-0), 3-1, in Grand Forks. The Huskies struck first, but UND answered soon after in the first period. Junior forward Jordan Kawaguchi then broke the deadlock midway through the third period with the game-winning goal on a wrister in the slot, while UND tacked on an empty-netter to cap the win. The Fighting Hawks outshot MTU, 24-15, in the victory.
In a wild, back-and-forth affair, No. 16 St. Cloud State (1-2-3) held one-goal leads on three separate occasions, but each time Princeton (1-0-1) fought back as the Huskies had to settle for a 5-5 overtime tie in the series finale at the Herb Brooks National Hockey Center. Three of the five SCSU goals came on the power play, including one each from sophomore forward Sam Hentges and junior forward Easton Brodzinski, putting the Huskies in front each time. Hentges extended his point streak to six games to start the season with an assist, as well, while Brodzinski led the way with three points on a goal and two helpers. Corey Andonovski tallied a hat trick for the Tigers, including tying the game on the power play with less than seven minutes left in regulation.
Next weekend, seven NCHC teams are in action with two conference series and three non-conference series. Four NCHC teams begin conference play as No. 1 Denver heads to No. 6 Minnesota Duluth in a top-10 showdown, while Miami visits No. 14 North Dakota. In non-conference play, Omaha welcomes in No. 7/8 Wisconsin, No. 16 St. Cloud State travels to No. 20 Northern Michigan and Western Michigan plays a home-and-home series with former CCHA rival Ferris State. Seven games next weekend are on NCHC.tv, including all four conference contests.