Key play: Boeser’s block results in North Dakota’s game-winning goal

Quinnipiac goalie Michael Garteig tries to knock down the puck after it hit North Dakota’s Brock Boeser (photo: Jim Rosvold).

TAMPA, Fla. — As the saying goes, actions speak louder than words.

There was no lack of action on the ice in Saturday’s national championship game, and one of the key plays that jumpstarted North Dakota’s momentum came at 14:56 in the first when Quinnipiac goaltender Michael Garteig came out of the crease to clear the puck — or so he thought — which resulted in the second North Dakota goal of the night.

After Fighting Hawks junior Paul LaDue was sent to the box for tripping at 13:19, Quinnipiac went on the power play, but the tables turned quickly. North Dakota freshman Brock Boeser came barreling through the neutral zone as Quinnipiac struggled to take the puck down by the boards to the other end of the rink.

Boeser got his stick on the puck, sending it toward Quinnipiac’s net, dodging defenseman Devon Toews in the process. Garteig came out to the top of circles to clear the puck, but Boeser had other ideas and blocked it, eventually scoring the short-handed, game-winning goal and his 27th of the season.


“I saw the goalie come out so I kind of read what way he was going to go — he kind of gave it away a little bit,” Boeser said. “Then it hit my shin pad, I knocked it down with my stick and I took it to the net which was wide open.”

When asked about the play during the postgame news conference, a somber Garteig summed it up by virtually not saying anything at all.

“I’d actually rather I prefer not to talk about it,” he said bluntly.

North Dakota’s Brock Boeser had an empty net to shoot at on his first-period goal (photo: Jim Rosvold).

Boeser didn’t care about his individual key contribution and said he was just happy his team won.

“I don’t really think about it in that way,” he said. “I just think about winning in national championships — it’s an unreal feeling and I couldn’t have done this with a greater group of guys.”


  1. Boeser really set the tone and stirred the drink in the final. Boeser had 53 points in his last 32 games of the season and 39 in 22 in 2016. He was a flat out star, the best in the country for me and the only close seconds were his linemates, and he saved his best for what I suspect will be last. It is a complete and total joke that he was not even in the top 10 in the Hobey. A flat out embarrassment that tarnishes the award for me.

    In the semifinal when UND needed a goal, Boeser made the play to get the puck in front of the net. And in the final, he was simply scintillating, even if he hadn’t made the play to blow the game open. When UND gets a 2-0 lead, they simply don’t lose, and they sure weren’t going to tonight.

    Look forward to seeing him in the NHL soon, ideally not too soon, but you want players to pursue and achieve success on their schedule, and it’s hard to say he has a lot more to prove in college.

    • I think with Jost coming in, he will stay. Schmaltz, Boeser, and Jost on a line, that would be probably as good as the CBS line.

    • The right move would have been to cover, but I think he panicked a little. Not sure what was to his left, but I don’t believe he had time to change the direction.

      • Shades of last year in Tampa in the Stanley Cup Final–Patrick Sharp scored a similar empty-net goal in Game 5 for Chicago, after Ben Bishop
        and Victor Hedman collided down the same end of Amalie Arena

  2. Maybe it was Hakstol holding North Dakota back all these years. Congrats to North Dakota for a well deserved championship.


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