It wasn’t a thing of beauty by any means, but UND found a way to grab two points against Minnesota State-Mankato on Friday night and secure a top-three seed in the WCHA playoffs.
UND also kept its hopes for a MacNaughton Cup alive. If UND beats the Mavs in the series finale — and UW knocks off St. Cloud State — UND would earn a share of the league championship.
- UND moved to No. 4 in the Pairwise Rankings with the win, which would get UND a top seed in the NCAA tournament.
- UND is now 18-1-1 in March games in the last three years, a remarkable statistic. That’s especially the case when you consider Omaha is 1-11 in March games during that span and Minnesota State is 1-10.
- There have only been three games all season where both Danny Kristo and Corban Knight were held off the scoresheet. Two of them are the last two games. The other was the 3-1 loss to St. Cloud State in January.
- Drake Caggiula played with Kristo and Knight on Friday. They didn’t really seem to mesh and I’m wondering if they want to try someone else up there tonight. Not sure who that would be. The staff might want to keep Rocco Grimaldi on the second line, which was probably UND’s best.
- I thought Grimaldi was UND’s best skater. He was buzzing all night. He seems to really enjoy the Olympic ice sheets. He has played some of his best games of the year on the big sheet.
- No doubt that Zane Gothberg pretty much stole this game for UND. Gothberg has been very solid for UND in the second half. Since Feb. 1, he leads the league in goals-against average (1.98), save percentage (.935) and winning percentage (.833).
- This game marked the first time in five years — since March 29, 2008 — that UND got outshot by 20 and won the game (shots were 40-20 against the Mavs). The last time it happened, Jean-Philippe Lamoureux stole a game against Princeton in the NCAA tournament when shots were 39-18 Tigers.
- Unsung player of the game is Andrew MacWilliam. UND was desperate to get some line changes late. Instead of making a full change and perhaps letting MSU catch them in a change, MacWilliam stayed on the ice, even though he was gassed. In the waning moments he found enough energy to eliminate a player along the wall, which led to a clear.
- Stephon Williams looks like the real deal for the Mavs. He had several sensational saves in the second period, including one on Grimaldi that looked like it was headed for the back of the net.
- We had a total of 3,671 on the live chat last night. We were told that the webcast quality wasn’t the greatest. So if you don’t feel like purchasing it in the series finale. Tune into Tim Hennessy and join us on the chat and we’ll do our best to keep you updated.