The University of North Dakota Fighting Hawks (8-2-3, 3-1-1-1) defeated the University of Denver Pioneers (6-3-2, 2-3-0-0), 5-4, with a game-winning goal at 17:29 of the third period on Friday at Magness Arena.
Jake Durflinger gave the Pioneers a 1-0 lead at 6:59 of the first period, threading the puck through a slew of bodies surrounding the Fighting Hawks net. Tyson McLellan and Michael Davies had assists on the goal. Later in the period, Denver extended its lead on the power play as Henrik Borgström shot down the left-wing boards and centered a pass for Jarid Lukosevicius who sent the puck into the top corner of the net. Troy Terry had a secondary assist on Lukosevicius’ goal. The Pioneers took a 2-0 lead and 21-12 shot advantage into the first intermission.
At 6:07 of the second period, Logan O’Connor broke up a play at the North Dakota blue line and capitalized on a shorthanded breakaway to make it 3-0, but the Fighting Hawks battled back with a pair of goals before the end of the frame. Zach Yon put North Dakota on the board first at 13:38 of the second period, then Joel Janatuinen scored on a rebound less than two (2) minutes later to make it a 3-2 game.
The Fighting Hawks carried their momentum from a two-goal second period with another tally less than five (5) minutes into the third period as Colton Poolman put a wrist shot from the slot underneath the crossbar to tie the game. One minute later, North Dakota went on the power play, won an offensive-zone faceoff and Christian Wolanin whizzed a shot past Pioneers goalie Tanner Jaillet to take the lead.
Troy Terry responded for the Pioneers at 11:26 of the third period, but the 4-4 tie was broken with less than three (3) minutes remaining in regulation when Johnny Simonson scored the game-winner.
Denver finished 2/4 on the power play and 3/4 on the penalty kill.
Jaillet made 31 saves.