Five highlights from around the country:
1. Nebraska-Omaha exercised its Bemidji State demon this weekend by sweeping the Beavers for the first time since they joined the league together. The sons of Sioux — Josh Archibald and Dominic Zombo — scored the goals in a 2-1 Omaha win on Saturday night.
2. Maine, which entered the weekend 5-14-4, pulled off a surprising sweep of Boston College in Boston. The Black Bears completed the sweep with a 3-1 win Saturday. Since Jerry York broke the all-time wins record, the Eagles are 2-5-1.
3. Western Michigan completed the sweep of Michigan with a 5-1 win on Saturday. Mike Cichy had three assists in the game for the Broncos.
4. Minnesota rebounded for a split against MSU-Mankato with a 4-1 victory in Mankato. The Mavs won the opener in Minneapolis. Zach Budish and Nate Schmidt had power-play goals for the Gophers.
5. Wisconsin extended its unbeaten streak in WCHA to 10 games (7-0-3) with a 2-1 win over Anchorage at home. Tyler Barnes and Jefferson Dahl scored early in the second period and Landon Peterson made 21 saves.
WCHA top performers
3 points — Kyle Rau, Minn, 3 assists
2 points — Ben Hanowski, SCSU, 2 goals
2 points — Jefferson Dahl, UW, 1 goal, 1 assist
2 points — Corban Knight, UND, 1 goal, 1 assist
2 points — Danny Kristo, UND, 1 goal, 1 assist
2 points — Zach Budish, Minn, 1 goal, 1 assist
2 points — Erik Haula, Minn, 1 goal, 1 assist
UND 2, St. Cloud State 2
UND rebounded from Friday night’s performance with a strong game Saturday, but only ended up with one point to show for it. Game stories:
- After the weekend, UND is 10th in the Pairwise Rankings.
- UND mixed up the line combinations. I’m not sure if they will stick. The team played significantly better, but UND coach Dave Hakstol credited it to the work ethic they displayed.
- For as much negative attention that has been placed on the defense, they limited the first-place team in the league to just 17 shots on goal in regulation and 18 shots in 65 minutes. The Huskies’ only goals came when they had a man advantage and the number of Grade A opportunities they produced was extremely low. In all, it was a fairly strong weekend defensively.
- I still think the goaltending battle is up for grabs. At some point, one of the goalies has to make it a no-brainer decision for the coaching staff like Aaron Dell did two years ago.
- Dan Senkbeil, Stephane Pattyn and Colten St. Clair had a solid game together. It’s possible that we see those guys again.
- I think Pattyn wanted to set the tone early by going hard to the net in the first period. He was called for a double minor on the play, but the crowd cheered in approval, happy that UND was showing lots of life early in the game after a lackluster Friday performance.
- One of the underrated plays of the game belonged to Michael Parks. On UND’s second goal, the St. Cloud State penalty killers were caught out on the ice for the whole two minutes-plus. After the power play expired, a Husky player got the puck and had a chance to get it out of the zone. Knowing they were tired, Parks attacked the player, forced a turnover and it wound up in the back of the net.
- One guy UND will want to get going for the stretch run is Carter Rowney. He has one goal and three points in the last 10 games. He has frequently had different linemates in search of the right combination. If they can find it and get him going like last year, Rowney could provide a significant boost to the offense.
- Ben Hanowski, who did not play in the first series between the teams, had three of SCSU’s five goals on the weekend.
- The Huskies have been able to scratch their way into NCAA tournament contention through their great WCHA play. They now have a seven-game unbeaten streak in league play.
- Apologies for the late post. Planned on getting it done during the Australian Open final and that didn’t happen.