UND beat Omaha 2-1 on Friday night indoors at CenturyLink Center in front of a crowd of 9,487 — about half of which were cheering for UND. Several times throughout the game, very loud ‘Lets go Sioux’ chants were ringing throughout the building and it had several players talking about it afterwards on Twitter:
Dan Senkbeil (@D_Senkbeil): Unbelievable to have a home crowd on the road. Lets go sioux chants were unreal. Now time to finish the job #outdoors. #rolltribe #sioux
Zane Gothberg (@Zanoinsano_29): Words cant describe how it felt to hear “lets go Sioux” chant tonight at the #centurylinkcenter. Thank u to all of the fans! #siouxhockey
Carter Rowney (@carterrowney): Pretty amazing to have home crowd on the road! SIOUX fans are truly the best! #ODR tomorrow! Should be an experience!
Joe Gleason (@GleasonJ020): Felt like we were at home tonight in Omaha with all the fans, an amazing feeling. Sioux fans are one of a kind
Stephane Pattyn (@GeneralPattyn28): Unbelievable how many Sioux fans made the trip. Great road win tonight. Need another one tomorrow on the #ODR #siouxwarriors #rolltribe
Mark MacMillan (@EasyMac_16): Great team win tonight, unreal crowd! Best fans in the country no doubt! Excited for the big outdoor game tomorrow #siouxwarriors
Other notes and comments:
- UND jumped to No. 7 in the Pairwise Rankings with the win (had they lost, they would have been at No. 13). Omaha stayed at No. 21.
- UND extended its unbeaten streak to four with the win. Since Dec. 1, UND has lost just 3 of 16 games.
- Considering how many UND fans were at the game tonight, an attendance of less than 10,000 was a bit surprising.
- UND’s still hoping to get more consistent scoring out of lines other than the top one. The Rocco Grimaldi, Corban Knight and Danny Kristo line got both goals Friday.
- UND’s defensemen played a strong game led by captain Andrew MacWilliam. Omaha didn’t have any breakaways and the number of odd-man rushes were fairly limited. During the last few minutes, the Mavericks couldn’t get any Grade A scoring chances, despite having an extra man and one UND forward minus a stick.
- The most impressive part of Zane Gothberg’s game was that he really swallowed up rebounds. Omaha took a lot of shots from the outside, and often had guys lurking for rebounds, but Gothberg made sure there weren’t any.
- Omaha defenseman Bryce Aneloski was launching away from the point tonight. He had a remarkable eight shots on goal. As a whole, Omaha’s defensemen had 14 shots on goal.
- Omaha coach Dean Blais said he started Dayn Belfour for the first time since Jan. 21, 2012, because Belfour had been practicing well. He also wanted to give John Faulkner a rest. Belfour played well in his start. Faulkner will almost certainly start the outdoor game.
- UND freshman Rocco Grimaldi scored a goal on his 20th birthday.
- All three UND-Omaha games at CenturyLink have been down to the wire. UND won the first 6-5, rallying from a two-goal deficit. Omaha won the second 1-0, scoring with less than a second left. UND won the third in a down-to-the-wire battle.
- We didn’t get any replays in the press box, but all the UND fans on the live chat said that the five-minute major against Omaha’s Tony Turgeon during the second period was a poor call. I’ll take their word for it.
- Speaking of Turgeon, there’s plenty of buzz out there that he’s willing to fight UND’s Stephane Pattyn in the series finale. We’ll see if it actually happens.
Five highlights from around the country:
1. Anchorage snapped its 14-game winless drought in dramatic fashion. Anchorage trailed 4-1, but rallied with four straight goals for a 5-4 victory over the Huskies.
2. Quinnipiac extended its unbeaten streak to 20 with an impressive 4-1 win at Lynah Rink over Cornell. Nine different players got on the scoresheet for the Bobcats.
3. Western Michigan beat Miami 2-0 in a battle of top-six teams. Chase Balisy scored a goal and added an assist for the Broncos.
4. Erik Haula scored two goals to lead Minnesota to a road win over St. Cloud State in a battle between two teams near the top in the WCHA standings.
5. Bryan Rust had 4 points as Notre Dame downed Michigan 7-4 in South Bend. The Wolverines are now 10-17-2 overall and 7-14-2 in CCHA play.
WCHA top performers
3 points — Jordan Kwas, UAA, 2 goals, 1 assist
3 points — Blake Tatchell, UAA, 1 goal, 2 assists
3 points — Eriah Hayes, Mankato, 1 goal, 2 assists
3 points — Teddy Bluegar, Mankato, 1 goal, 2 assists
2 points — Erik Haula, Minn, 2 goals