By Andrew Erickson / @CarvellMedia / firstname.lastname@example.org / Photo by SCSU Athletics
Sticks, gloves and helmets littered the ice on Saturday night at the Herb Brooks National Hockey Center.
The final horn blew as a benches clearing brawl signaled the end of this high flying series between the St. Cloud State men’s hockey team and the No. 1 ranked North Dakota Fighting Hawks.
The Huskies come out of the weekend with 5 out of 6 NCHC points. SCSU has rolling momentum into their last four games, which come against two of the top four teams in the country.
Friday night ended in an official tie at 3-3 but the Huskies secured the extra point in the shootout. Saturday the Huskies won 2-1 to claim a series victory.
The Huskies come into the weekend off of a bye week that included much needed rest time for a squad that had battled the flu bug.
The flu bug appeared to be gone in this one as SCSU pulled the No. 1 ranked North Dakota Fighting Hawks to an official 3-3 tie. Then were able to win it in a sudden death shootout on a goal by junior Easton Brodzinski.
The scoring in this one was started by UNDs senior Westin Michaud on a shorthanded goal with about two minutes left in the first.
The Huskies would go back to back in the second to regain the lead as senior Jack Ahcan and Jack Poehling both scored their 7th of the year 2:13 apart.
Nearing the end of the second the Fighting Hawks started the powerplay on a Jack Poehling hooking call. Freshman Shane Pinto netted his 15th of the year on a spectacular behind the back pass from Michaud.
Just over four into the third period UND would put themselves up with sophomore Jacob Bernard-Dockers 5th of the season.
Jack Poehling batted a puck out of mid air for a goal as his brother was laying on the ice after being hit in the head.
The game would go to OT at 3 a piece. No team was able to score in the OT periods and would end in the a tie. Brodzinski would take a shot glove side and beat Peter Thome. The other end junior David Hrenak stoned Hobey Baker front runner Jordan Kawaguchi.
Shots in this one were 37-33 for UND and faceoffs were tied at 31.
Coming into Saturday it was known that UND would be without its top forward Kawaguchi due to an undisclosed injury. The Huskies took coming out of this weekend in the positive full force earning the 2-1 victory.
UND started off on a bad note Pinto was given a major and a game misconduct for checking from behind just 3 minutes in.
The Huskies took advantage of the 5 minute man advantage. Sophomore Spencer Meier would take a pass just below the faceoff dot and waited out Thome before sniping it into the top far side corner.
SCSU carried that lead into the second before North Dakotas Collin Adams struck. He fluttered a puck in with 7 and a half minutes left in the period to tie the game.
Just six minutes into the third Jack Poehling would rip the game winning goal in. He went just over the left pad of Thome. It was Jacks third goal of the weekend.
The final horn blew and UND’s Matt Kierstad took a shot at the Huskies net. A benches clearing brawl ensued on the ice which earned four game misconducts.
The NCAA and NCHC will be looking at the brawl this week and I fully expect at least two of the players involved to be suspended next week. What remains to be seen is if it will happen and from what governing body.
Shots in this one heavily favor UND 30-19 and faceoffs were tied for the second night in a row at 24 all. This marks the first loss of the season for Thome and gives Hrenak his 11th.
The Huskies are back in action next weekend against the Denver Pioneers, who are one spot ahead of them in the NCHC standings coming in. The games will be live on 88.1 KVSC at 7:37 p.m. on Friday and 6:07 Saturday night. Sports Director Andrew Erickson will be on the call.