Weekend ends in series split

North Dakota wins Friday, loses Saturday against Minnesota Duluth.

UND junior defenseman Nick Matton fights for the puck Saturday against UMD. Photo by Keisuke Yoshimura/The Dakota Student.

After battling a week of illness and injuries, North Dakota fought through last weekend’s series against Minnesota Duluth — looking for its first Saturday victory of the season.

But the Bulldogs rebounded from a 4-2 loss Friday and claimed a 6-3 victory Saturday as they kept the Green and White from saluting the fans.

“It’s been a bit of a long week, but we didn’t cut ourselves any slack on that,” UND coach Dave Hakstol said. “I thought we needed to play very intelligent and a full 60 minutes tonight, and we would have a chance to win this game. That’s how I still feel.

“I give Duluth all the credit in the world. They’re a great hockey team and made a lot of good plays, but I don’t think we did everything we needed to do tonight.”

The Bulldogs capitalized on a power play opportunity at 7:28 of the first to take the lead Saturday, but UND’s Dillon Simpson responded with a shot from the point to tie the score.

Tony Cameranesi’s drop pass to Adam Krause nearing the end of the first frame found the back of the net and gave Duluth the advantage heading into the locker room.

“We didn’t play a complete (of a game) as we needed to,” Hakstol said. “I thought we had to play a really intelligent, complete game. Little bit low on energy and I thought we didn’t manage, obviously, the last two minutes of the first period very well.”

UND erased its two-goal deficit in the second period as freshman defenseman Paul LaDue tallied his first goal in a North Dakota jersey before Duluth was able to secure a 4-2 advantage once again.

With a goal from UND’s Bryn Chyzyk, the team was unable to catch up the Bulldogs. Duluth doubled UND’s score, 6-3, with another goal and an empty netter at the end of the final frame, rebounding from a loss Friday.

“I thought both teams played pretty hard,” LaDue said. “Obviously, there’s some stuff we need to work on as a team. We had a few breakdowns, and they capitalized on it.”

Friday victory

North Dakota watched as its two-goal lead fade away within 20 seconds during the third period Friday, but relied on continued persistence from Clarke Saunders in between the pipes.

The senior goaltender blocked 34 shots in a 4-2 UND victory over the Bulldogs.

Saunders stepped out to make a save at 6:37, but UMD’s Alex Iafallo picked up the puck and put it in the empty net for a goal. Just 20 seconds later, Krause slipped the puck through traffic and in past Saunders.

“Everybody’s human,” Saunders said. “I went ‘oh crap’ for about 10 seconds and it happens. It happens in hockey. It happens in any sport. You’ve just got to shrug it off and I think the whole team did a really good job of that.”

Jordan Schmaltz fired a shot from the point at 10:05 after picking the puck out of mid-air and holding it in the zone — awarding UND the 3-2 lead.

An empty netter before the final buzzer sounded by Stephane Pattyn secured the 4-2 victory for UND.

Though Friday’s result provided a chance for a sweep, UND’s efforts weren’t enough Saturday.

“We had some good opportunities,” Hakstol said. “But at the end of the day, it’s the results that count.”

Elizabeth Erickson is the sports editor of The Dakota Student. She can be reached at [email protected].