DENVER — A see-saw battle ended in a no-decision as No. 1 Denver skated to a 3-3 draw against Minnesota-Duluth on Saturday night at Magness Arena.
The Pioneers, earning their first tie of the season, maintained their lead in the WCHA standings with a one-point advantage over St. Cloud State, which earned a weekend sweep over Michigan Tech.
Neither team was able to operate offensively for much of the first period as both defensive units closed passing lanes and clogged play in the neutral zone. But Greg Barber, for the second straight night, broke the scoreless tie late in the opening frame to extend his scoring streak to three games.
The sophomore duo of Connor James and defenseman Ryan Caldwell set up the power-play marker from the point before Caldwell fired a one-timer towards the net that was redirected by Barber.
Minnesota-Duluth (11-19-2, 4-16-2) appeared to silence the Pioneers when forward Mark Carlson tied the game on a shorthanded possession minutes later, but sophomore Lukas Dora converted on Denver’s (24-5-1, 17-4-1) power play 46 seconds later to give the Pioneers a 2-1 lead at the first intermission.
The Bulldogs stormed out of the locker room and knotted the game with a power-play goal 32 seconds into the middle period that snapped Denver’s consecutive home penalty-killing streak at 40.
Judd Medak registered his team-leading 13th goal of the season with a slapshot from the blue line that beat Berkhoel over the glove shoulder. The battle continued as the Pioneers regained the lead on a goal by junior Kevin Doell, who extended his scoring streak to three games with his 14th goal of the year.
Denver held onto the one-goal advantage for the majority of the second period before UMD answered with its second man-advantage goal of the night to equalize the tilt going into the second recess.
Despite outshooting the Bulldogs 15-8 in the third frame, Denver failed to capitalize on scoring chances down the stretch and was forced to skate in its first extra period of the season. The Pioneers dominated the five-minute overtime and were awarded a power play with one minute and 23 seconds remaining, but UMD netminder Adam Coole maintained his poise in the waning seconds to preserve the tie.
For the game, Denver outshot the Bulldogs 43-24 and held the advantage in faceoffs 46-42, but struggled on special teams by allowing a shorthanded tally and two UMD power-play goals. The Pioneers converted twice in six man-advantage tries.