The Minnesota Gophers and St. Cloud State Huskies will face off in the finals of the NCAA West Regional Sunday evening, after they both won their first round games Saturday in the men's hockey tournament.
But the Mavericks of Minnesota State-Mankato lost their semifinal game Saturday night. The final game is Sunday at 6:30 p.m., and the winner advances to the Frozen Four next weekend.
Minnesota Gophers 7, Robert Morris Colonials 3
The Minnesota Gopher men's hockey team had little trouble with its first round NCAA opponent Robert Morris, winning 7-3 Saturday evening at the Xcel Energy Center, the St. Paul Pioneer Press reports.
Minnesota senior co-captain Nate Condon scored the Gophers' first goal, and Michael Brodzinski and Justin Kloos added one each to give Minnesota a 3-0 lead after the first period.
Robert Morris, which finished 19-18-5, was overmatched from the start. The Gophers had five shots on goal in the first 83 seconds.
The Colonials fell behind 4-0 before getting any offense going. Two of the nation’s top scorers, Cody Wydo and Zac Lynch, socred back-to-back goals late in the second period.
The surge kept the Colonials in contention heading into the final period, but more offense from the Gophers closed out the win.
The seven goals and 50 shots on goal were a season high for the Gophers, according to the Star Tribune.
St. Cloud State Huskies 4, Notre Dame Fighting Irish 3 (OT)
St. Cloud State's Nic Dowd scored the game-winning goal 18 minutes, 21 seconds into overtime to defeat Notre Dame 4-3 Saturday night at the Xcel Energy Center, the Star Tribune reports.
St. Cloud State and Notre Dame were well matched in the game, and they were tied at 3-3 after regulation.
The teams traded goals all night, with Notre Dame's Thomas DiPauli tying the score 3-all with a backhand that deflected off the St. Cloud State goaltender Ryan Faragher’s right pad.
The Brodzinski brothers feel at home at Xcel Energy Center. Hours after Michael Brodzinski scored a goal and had an assist to help guide the Gophers past Robert Morris in the regional opener, older brother Jonny scored a goal of his own for the Huskies.
Notre Dame has had trouble winning in the NCAA tournament against Minnesota programs. They are 0-5 against state teams after Saturday night’s loss, and they lost to St. Cloud State last year in the same round of the NCAA tournament.
UMass-Lowell River Hawks 2, MSU-Mankato Mavericks 1
Connor Hellebuyck made 35 saves and Joe Pendenza scored a short-handed goal in the first period in UMass-Lowell’s 2-1 victory over Minnesota State-Mankato on Saturday night in the NCAA Northeast Regional semifinals, the Associated Press reports.
UMass-Lowell (26-10-4) will face top-seeded Boston College on Sunday for a spot in the Frozen Four. The Eagles beat Denver 6-2 in the first semifinal.
The loss ends Minnesota State’s 13-game winning streak (12-0-1) and kept them from their first NCAA Division I tournament win — on their third try.
Cole Huggins made 33 saves for the Mavericks.
Minnesota State earned a berth in the tournament after it won the WCHA championship.