Sunday, November 24, 2013

UND ties Boston University 3-3

Seal of the University of North Dakota
Seal of the University of North Dakota (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Last night, the University of North Dakota put a season high 58 shots on the Boston University net, but still had to settle for a 3-3 tie. Standing in the way of a UND victory, was Terrier goalie Matt O’Connor. The sophomore goalie was nothing short of amazing, as he stopped a career-high 55 shots. Many of his saves were of the spectacular variety. Yes, I am cuing the hot goalie storyline.

I didn't know that was a crime? 

If it wasn’t for O’Connor, the game “probably” would’ve been very one sided, as UND attacked the BU net in waves. It was one of UND’s best efforts of the season, as they held a 58-31 shot advantage over the Terriers.

“He’s a good goalie,” UND junior forward Stephane Pattyn said.

According to the UND SID Jayson Hadju, that’s the most shots that UND has put on net in a game since December 30, 2000, when UND put 65 shots on the goal, to beat Princeton 4-1.  

Did I mention the play of the BU goalie? So did UND’s head coach Dave Hakstol.

“That’s the game of hockey,” Hakstol said. “Their guy (Matt O’Connor) played well in net.”
“We played a better game tonight than we did last night,” Hakstol said. “As usual when you come out on an eastern swing you usually run into different challenges. Obviously, we ran into some challenges this weekend, but we probably got better as a hockey team.”  

While some will look at this weekend as a lost weekend, I think you can look this weekend as a building block, moving forward. UND came out last night and was on their toes for most of the game. Rocco Grimaldi was the best player on the ice for UND. Second best player for UND was junior forward Brendan O’Donnell, who looked really good in his return to the lineup, after missing five games due to injury.

I think he was the difference in the game for UND. I would imagine that UND should get Mark MacMillan back soon. Moving forward, I wonder, if we will see the all junior line of Mark MacMillan, Michael Parks and O’D? That line seemed to have some chemistry together before the run of bad luck and injuries took hold for UND.

Stats, stats, stats

On Saturday night, UND was one-for-seven on the power-play, and had 19 of its 31 shots on the power-play. UND was one-for-nine (.10%) on the power-play for the weekend.
After writing an article about UND forward Rocco Grimaldi and Drake Caggiula,  Grimaldi had a six game point streak snapped last night and Caggiula was kept off of the score sheet all weekend long.
After last night’s game, Zane Gothberg’s season numbers 2-5-2, 2.84 GAA, .906 save percentage.
After this Friday’s game, Clarke Saunder’s season numbers 2-1-0, 3.50 GAA, save percentage .910.
This season, UND is 1-1-2 against Hockey East this season.

Looking ahead to next weekend 

With the tie the University of North Dakota is (4-6-2, 3-5-0 NCHC) and entertains ECAC opponent St Lawrence (7-5-2, 2-2-2 ECAC) at the Ralph Engelstad Arena, in an important two game nonconference series. 
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