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North Dakota Nips SLU

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The University of North Dakota struck for two goals in a span of 31 seconds late in the second period to take a 3-1 lead and then held off St. Lawrence University in the third period to gain a 3-2 win over the Saints and a split of the weekend series between the two teams.

The Saints will return to ECAC action next weekend, playing at Clarkson on Fridayand hosting the Knights in a rematch on Saturday.

The Saints, now 8-6-2, bounced back from a strong defensive effort by North Dakota which held them to just three shots on goal and produced a shorthanded goal in the first period of UND, but despite getting Greg Carey’s second goal of the weekend early in the third period, they couldn’t come up with the equalizing goal as goalie Zane Gothberg made 12 of his 25 saves in the final 20 minutes.

North Dakota played close attention to Carey in the first period and while he drew a penalty to put the Saints on a power play, UND came away with the only goal of the period when Rocco Grimaldi beat the Saint defense to a pass back to the blue line and scored on a shorthanded breakaway, tucking the puck around Saint goalie Matt Weninger, who tried to poke check Grimaldi on the play, but couldn’t get to the puck at the 12:10 mark. The Saints had stretch of major power play earlier in the period, but couldn’t convert.

SLU did tie the game at 10:07 of the second period as defenseman Justin Baker cruised in from the point, cut to the center and sent a perfect pass to Gunnar Hughes at the side of the crease who redirected the puck past Gothberg at 10:07 for his third of the season with Sean McGovern also assisting to make it 1-1.

Connor Gaarder put UND in front after a lengthy review on a power play at 18:55 of the second. Originally waved off by the referee as having gone off the post, video review showed that the puck hit the back of the net and came right out to give UND a 2-1 lead and just seconds later they had a 3-1 lead as Stephane Pattyn scored his third of the year on a sizzling wrist shot from the left faceoff circle.

Carey scored his 11th of the year and second of the weekend, taking a pass from Chris Martin as he came down the slot and beating Gothberg with a wrist shot inside the far post at 5:37 to make it a 3-2 game, but while the Saints outshot UND 13-2 in the final 20 minutes and pulled Weninger for the extra attacker, they couldn’t get the tying goal.

Weninger finished with 21 saves for the Saints while Gothberg had 25 for North Dakota.

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