Denver, Colorado College open tied Gold Pan series with tie

The Gold Pan series between the University of Denver Pioneers and Colorado College is tied at 12 wins apiece, so it’s fitting the two teams would open the 25th edition of the series with a tie.

The Pioneers (9-3-3, 5-3-1-0) tied the Tigers (7-7-1, 3-5-1-1), 4-4, with Colorado College scoring in three-on-three overtime to earn the extra point in the NCHC standings on Friday night at Magness Arena.

After a scoreless first 19 minutes, Colorado College’s Kristian Blumenschei scored on the rush with seven (7) seconds remaining in the first period to give the Tigers a 1-0 lead at the first intermission.

Shortly into the second period, Logan O’Connor leveled the score for the Pioneers with his third goal of the season. O’Connor’s wrap-around goal made it 1-1 only 5:26 into the middle frame. Colin Staub had the lone assist on the play. Tigers forward Nick Halloran responded ten minutes later, but Colorado College’s second lead of the night lasted only three (3) minutes as Dylan Gambrell and Ian Mitchell each scored for Denver before the end of the second period.

Gambrell’s unassisted goal came at 18:04 of the second period as he curled away from the goal, then cut back to slide the puck under the pad of Tigers goalie Alex Leclerc. Only 1:39 later, Ian Mitchell took a pass from Gambrell out of the corner and wrapped around the net for his first NCAA goal. Jake Durfligner had the secondary assist on Mitchell’s goal that gave the Pioneers a 3-2 lead through 40 minutes.

At 11:05 of the third period, Halloran scored his second of the night to make it a tie game at 3-3. With less than three (3) minutes remaining in the third period, Jaakko Heikkinen’s shot from the slot gave the Pioneers another one-goal advantage, but the lead would not hold as Mason Bergh tallied with seven (7) seconds left in regulation to make it a 4-4 tie.

Colorado College’s Christiano Versich scored in the three-on-three overtime to give the Tigers the extra point in the NCHC standings.

Tanner Jaillet finished with 27 saves. Denver went 0/4 on the power play and 2/2 on the penalty kill.

The Front Range sides have been playing one another since 1950, with Denver holding an all-time lead, 175–116–18 [.561]. The Gold Pan series began under that nomenclature in 1993-94.