St. Cloud, Western skate to split
No. 12 Western Michigan stands to rise in the national rankings after earning a road split this weekend at second-ranked St. Cloud State.
Western handed the Huskies their first home loss of the season on Friday as two goals each from Hugh McGing and Lawton Courtnall (both empty-netters in the third period) lifted WMU to a 7-5 win. Four second-period goals gave the Broncos a 5-4 lead heading into the third before the teams traded goals the rest of the way. St. Cloud starting goaltender Jeff Smith was pulled in the second.
In Saturday’s rematch, WMU scored on its two power play opportunities but saw St. Cloud win 4-3 thanks to a Mikey Eyssimont winner with 4:28 left. It was his second goal of the game and, in fact, his second in the same period as he had scored on a 5-on-3 power play 5:50 into the frame.
The Huskies again used two goalies, with Smith getting the win after making four third-period saves. Saturday’s starter, Dávid Hrenák, made nine.
SCSU gets No. 8 Minnesota State at home next Saturday, while WMU returns to Kalamazoo, Mich., to prep for Colorado College.
Duluth sweeps on the road
In a weekend full of interesting results around the NCHC, Minnesota Duluth had the most consistent success in earning a road sweep over CC.
Not that it came especially easy. UMD opened the series with a 6-5 win Friday night. The Bulldogs tied the game three times before Riley Tufte and Peter Krieger scored moments apart late in the second period to put the Bulldogs ahead 6-4. CC pulled one back through a Westin Michaud power-play goal in the third, but the Tigers couldn’t find a winner.
They had an even tougher time Saturday as UMD scored four goals in the last 40 minutes to roll to a 5-1 win. The Bulldogs outshot CC 45-19, and two Kobe Roth goals helped Duluth pick up its 12th win of the season.
Next weekend, UMD hosts No. 7 North Dakota, which just earned a win and a tie in a home-and-home with Bemidji State.
Weninger credited with goalie goal
Where do you start on talking points from a game with 18 goals? Try the last one.
With 2:39 left in Omaha’s 11-7 home win Friday against Miami, Evan Weninger became the first Mavericks goaltender in program history to be credited with a goal. Not that it went in as you might think.
Miami’s net was empty at the time, but Weninger got the goal by virtue of being the last UNO player to touch the puck on a save before an errant pass from a Miami skater sent it off the boards and down into the RedHawks’ net.
According to College Hockey Inc., Weninger became the first collegiate goaltender to score in a game since 2013 and just the 10th since 1980. Of those 10, only three came on actual shots.
Saturday’s rematch was still somewhat high-scoring – just more in the traditional sense – as UNO used a 4-3 win to clinch its first NCHC series sweep this season.