The No. 3 DU Pioneers defeated the No. 18 UNO Mavericks by a score of 5-3 on Friday night at Magness Arena, erasing an early-game deficit to mark their 17th win of the season of the come-from-behind variety. Denver trailed Omaha by two after 20 minutes of play but stormed back to score five unanswered goals en route to stretching its winning streak versus Omaha to seven games.

“We showed a lot of determination tonight after falling behind early,” Pioneers head coach Jim Montgomery said following Friday’s victory. “We won a lot of puck battles and foot races and we executed well in the offensive zone. When we play like that we’re tough to beat and hopefully we can put together a similar effort tomorrow night and come away with another good result.”

The visitors scored twice in the first half of the opening stanza on Friday to take an early 1-0 lead, with Justin Parizek and Austin Ortega both finding the back of the net for the Mavericks. Denver then dominated the second period of play, outshooting Omaha 21-10 and scoring four goals courtesy of Tyson McLellan (San Jose, Calif.), Henrik Borgström(Helsinki, Finland), Dylan Gambrell (Bonney Lake, Wash.) and Liam Finlay (Kelowna, B.C.) to take a 4-2 lead into the second intermission.

Colorado Avalanche prospect Will Butcher (Sun Prairie, Wis.) put DU up by a field goal at the 13:30 mark of the third period, hammering a long-range slap shot to the back of UNO’s net after a successful faceoff win by senior center Matt Marcinew (Calgary, Alta.) got the puck to Denver’s captain at the point. The Mavericks scored in the 56th minute of play to add a modicum of drama to the proceedings, but that would be as close as they’d get as DU ultimately took the decision by a two-goal margin.

Denver (17-6-4, 9-3-3-2 NCHC) and Omaha (14-9-4, 7-7-1-0 NCHC) will square off at Magness Arena again tomorrow night at 7 p.m.