MINNEAPOLIS — Recent Minnesota transfer Jacob Cepis tied the back-and-forth contest at three at 17:56 to send the game to overtime on a play where Jordan Schroeder brought the puck into the zone, but it bounced off his stick and found the trailing Cepis.
“The puck found away to get to him, he is a goal scorer,” remarked Minnesota coach Don Lucia on Cepis goal.
“It often happens, it comes off a bounce,” commented North Dakota coach Dave Hakstol on the play.
The only shot of overtime came on a wrap around play by Chris VandeVelde that Alex Kangas smothered.
Despite the lack of shots, the momentum was clearly in the Sioux favor.
At 3:52 of overtime Nick Leddy took a cross checking penalty that put the home team shorthanded for the remainder of overtime. They were not able to get quality scoring chances.
“It was a hard fought game. A lot of guys emptied their tanks,” commented Hakstol.
“Its like a playoff game when we play these guys,” commented Sioux forward Brad Malone.
The score was tied 2-2 entering the third.
The Sioux broke the tie at 6:37 of the third period on a goal by Brad Malone. Derrick LaPoint shot the puck around the boards behind the net where Evan Trupp picked it up on the far side. Trupp passed to Malone from behind the net for the quick tap in from 3 feet.
“It was pretty easy on my part. I just planted myself in front of the net with my stick on the ice. Trupp had all the magic,” remarked Brad Malone on the goal.
The Gophers started the second period on the power play trailing, 1-0.
Schroeder tied game at :53 of the second on a slapshot from the top of the circle on the power play after a faceoff. The puck beat a screened Eidness over the high over glove side.
White made it 2-1 Minnesota just under two minutes later. The play started when, Ryan Flynn took a shot from the right circle that went off a defenseman straight up the middle. White pounced on the puck and buried the puck past Eidness.
Danny Kristo got his second goal of the game at 13:24 of the second. Kristo got the puck off the side boards from Joe Gleason. Kristo skated through the circle parallel to the goal line. It looked like he lost the puck as he went around a defenseman but found it just as a shooting lane cleared and fired a quick wrister past Kangas.
The Sioux almost took a lead moments later on a deflection off Aaron Ness that hit the far pipe.
Kristo opened the scoring at 15:56 of the first on a screened shot from a transition play. Kristo received a pass at center ice from Evan Trupp and skated into the zone. Kristo did a little stutter step and paused to shoot 40 feet out. Cade Fairchild went down to block his shot. Kristo threw a wristshot on net that beat Kangas.
The same two teams faceoff Saturday night at 7 p.m. at Mariucci Arena.