COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — Much of Fridays game between Colorado College and North Dakota played out like one would expect between two teams with identical league records, with both teams pressuring and both goaltenders playing outstanding.
The game even went into overtime, but in the end, it was the Sioux who came out on top, 3-2.
We had a lead with under two minutes to go in our own building and we didnt take care of the puck and theyre too good of a team to give them second chances, said CC head coach Scott Owens. Its very frustrating.
The Tigers started off the game with a penalty 18 seconds in and about 20 seconds later, came down on a 2-on-1 shorthanded rush. Kris Fredheim almost scored off a Nick Dineen pass, but Sioux goaltender Brad Eidsness got a piece of the puck with his stick and the shot deflected off the crossbar and dropped in the crease, where the UND defense cleared the puck out.
Six minutes later, the Sioux score to make it a 1-0 game on their next power-play opportunity. Corban Knight fed Danny Kristo at the left point whose shot went in stick-side past CC goaltender Joe Howe (39 saves).
The rest of the period was punctuated with both goalies making unbelievable saves. In the waning minutes of the first, Eidsness stopped Tyler Johnson on a cross-crease pass and then shortly after, Howe stoned the Siouxs Evan Trupp on a shorthanded chance.
There was quite a bit of loose change laying around in critical areas in both ends of the rink and I thought the two goaltenders were the first and second stars of the night, said UND head coach Dave Hakstol.
The Tigers kept slowly putting on the pressure during the second period and their efforts eventually paid off with just under seven minutes remaining in the frame.
Two seconds after killing off a Joe Marciano penalty, the Tigers tied it up. UND Ben Blood pinched up on a play, causing the Sioux to be caught with one man back and Nate Prosser and Matt Overman took advantage. Overman fed Prosser with a cross-crease pass and Prosser slid the puck inside the right post past Eidsness (26 saves).
CC took a 2-1 lead 2:44 into the third period on Prossers second goal of the night when his shot from the top of the zone beat Eidsness five-hole.
However, the Sioux kept fighting back and their efforts paid off with 1:42 left in the third period. Brad Malone caught a bouncing Trupp rebound in his chest, managed to control it and shoot it past an out of position Howe to knot the game at two and send the game into overtime.
Go to the net and good things happen and a real good play by Brad to finish it by knocking it out of the air, said Hakstol.
The Sioux kept the momentum going and just over two minutes into overtime, Matt Frattin took advantage of a CC collision in the neutral zone, skated into the zone uncontested and beat Howe high glove side for the victory.
Its a crushing loss for us, its a game we needed to have, said Owens. I felt good about our teams effort, but it comes down to making plays at the end of the game and we didnt make them.
This was a great win for us and I think we can come back and play a better hockey game tomorrow night and I think we need to do that, said Hakstol.
The two teams face off again Saturday night at 7:07 p.m. MT.