Zane McIntyre turns away a shot in the second period on Friday (photo prout)
Timely goals, gritty neutral zone play and a perfect penalty kill were all key components in the SCSU Huskies 3-1 win over #1 ranked North Dakota in the semi-finals of the NCHC Frozen Faceoff on Friday at the Target Center in Minneapolis. Despite falling behind early, the Huskies scored twice in a 20 second span in the last-minute of the first period and then played tough defense through the balance of the game to edge top-ranked UND. The win placed them at #9 in the Pairwise and most likely assured them of an at-large bid in the 2015 NCAA tournament. North Dakota gave a first period rise to the large contingent of UND fans when defenseman Keaton Thompson sent a seeing eye shot through traffic past SCSU goaltender Charlie Lindgren for a 1-0 lead at 15:02. It appeared UND would head into the locker room with a one-goal lead until David Morley scored with 24.5 seconds to play in the first. Jonny Brodzinski made a nice play controlling the puck behind the net and then fed Morley who fired the puck past Zane McIntyre to knot the game at 1-1. The Huskies then scored again 20 seconds later as Patrick Russell worked the puck into the zone and steered the puck to Joey Benik who scored from the side of the net for a 2-1 SCSU lead with 5.4 seconds left in the period. Two periods of defensive hockey followed until Joey Rehkamp scored an empty net goal at 18:55 of the third period to salt away a 3-1 win for the Huskies and a match with Miami in the championship game of the NCHC Frozen Faceoff. SCSU outshot North Dakota 24-20 in the contest with the Huskies Charlie Lindgren turning aside 19-20 SOG while UND’s McIntyre turned aside 21/23 SOG. Both squads were 0/2 on the man-advantage.
Stars of the Game:
#1 Joey Benik (SCSU) #2 David Morley (SCSU) #3 Charlie Lindgren (SCSU)