HOUGHTON, Mich. — Thanks in large part to a two-goal game from junior forward Evan Trupp, the No. 3 North Dakota Fighting Sioux completed the sweep of the Michigan Tech Huskies with a 4-1 win on Saturday night at the MacInnes Student Ice Arena.
“Evan’s played that way all the way through since day one of training camp,” said Sioux coach Dave Hakstol. “He’s really taken his game to the next level for us.”
On the fourth man-advantage of the second period, Trupp finally broke through with a goal at 12:54. He and linemate Brad Malone, also a junior, worked the cycle effectively before Trupp’s shot deflected off of a Huskies’ defender and past Huskies’ goalie Kevin Genoe.
The Huskies (2-6-0 overall, 1-5-0 WCHA) jumped all over the Sioux early, as assistant captain Brett Olson picked up the first shot of the game by skating in hard at Sioux netminder Brad Eidsness.
“[Brad]‘s still a young guy back there for us,” said Hakstol. “He’s only a sophomore, but he brings a veteran presence for us.”
By moving their feet, the Huskies drew two power plays before the seven-minute mark of the opening frame, and on the second one, they found the back of the net.
Junior Jordan Baker, an assistant captain, took a pass from captain Malcolm Gwilliam and fired a shot on net that Eidsness had trouble handling. The rebound kicked back to Baker, who buried the puck in the back of the net at 8:07. The goal was Baker’s second of the year.
“We got off to a good start,” said Huskies’ coach Jamie Russell. “Until we correct [our penalties], we are making things very difficult for ourselves.”
The Sioux (6-1-1 overall, 4-1-1 WCHA) responded almost two minutes later, as sophomore David Toews found the twine behind Genoe. Toews’ initial shot hit both posts and kicked back out front to where he was standing, and he didn’t miss the second time, notching his second of the season at 9:51.
After the two goals, both teams seemed to settle into an evenly played 10 minutes to finish the first period.
The Huskies started the second period by taking four consecutive penalties, but did a good job of killing off three of the four. Genoe made three solid stops over the course of the power plays on freshman Danny Kristo, who was manning the point.
“We keep putting ourselves in tough situations,” said Russell. “I don’t know if it’s the youth of our team, but until we grasp what controlling our emotions means, we’re making things very difficult on ourselves.”
Assistant captain Chris VandeVelde couldn’t find the net on several chances from the high slot area, and his shots tended to rebound to Huskies’ defenders, who cleared the puck.
The Huskies finally had a power play of their own after freshman Joe Gleason was whistled for holding, but couldn’t solve the Sioux penalty kill in order to get shots through to Eidsness.
In the third period, the Sioux controlled the play in terms of shots on goal, but not in terms of skating, as both teams skated well.
Trupp scored his second goal of the night on a rebound at 18:13. Toews did most of the work, carrying the puck to the net and getting the first shot on Genoe. Malone also assisted on the goal, which was Trupp’s fourth.
Just 21 seconds later, sophomore Jason Gregoire netted a rebound goal of his own. Captain Chay Genoway picked up an assist on Gregoire’s fifth of the season.
Genoe was one of the few bright spots for the Huskies, making 31 saves over the course of the game. Eidsness made 22 stops in the win.