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Brad E. Schlossman / Forum Communications Co., Published January 30 2011

Sioux rout Colorado College to salvage split in men's hockey series

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – The University of North Dakota didn’t have its captain in the lineup Saturday night, but the Sioux threw on their business suits and went to work anyway.

The black-clad Sioux put on a clinic at World Arena, hammering Colorado College 6-0 in front of a sold-out crowd that included a legion of UND supporters who got progressively louder with each goal.

Brock Nelson, Brett Hextall, Carter Rowney, Matt Frattin, Derrick LaPoint and Joe Gleason all scored goals as the Sioux salvaged their third straight series split with a Saturday night victory.

UND improved to 25-1-2 in the black jerseys since 2006-07 and 7-0 this season, while taking over first place in the Western Collegiate Hockey Association from an idle Denver team.

The Sioux, 19-8-2 overall and 14-6 in league play, received points from 12 different players in handing Colorado College its worst loss since 2006.

Aaron Dell earned his fourth shutout of the season by stopping 21 Tigers shots.

“I was happy with our 60 minutes,” UND coach Dave Hakstol said. “In a lot of ways, it was a 180-degree turnaround from our performance last night. I told our guys after (Friday’s) game that we did a lot of things that allowed a team opportunities to beat us, but maybe even at our best CC was going well enough to beat us.

“We needed to be much tougher to play against, and that’s what we were tonight. We were harder to play against.”

UND adjusted well to playing without captain Chay Genoway, who left Friday night’s game with a leg injury. The severity of the injury is not yet known. Genoway will be reevaluated upon returning to Grand Forks.

The Sioux were scheduled to charter back late Saturday night, and the team made sure the trip would be enjoyable.

One night after UND allowed a season-high 41 shots in a 4-2 loss, they kept the Tigers at bay during the opening 40 minutes, allowing just eight shots through two periods.

The Sioux didn’t waste any time taking an early lead.

Senior defenseman Jake Marto made a long outlet pass to Nelson, who used his speed to get wide on the Tigers defenseman before cutting behind the net and jamming home a goal on a wraparound at 5 minutes, 3 seconds.

Nelson’s goal broke a streak of seven straight WCHA games where the Sioux had allowed the first goal of the game.

“That was definitely something we talked about before the game,” Nelson said. “There were a few games before where we didn’t score first and we kind of put ourselves in a hole and we had to try to dig out. Tonight, Marto made a great play and we were able to capitalize. I think that jumpstarted the team.”

The Sioux blew the game open in the second with four tallies to take a 5-0 lead. They outshot the Tigers 19-6 in that frame.

Hextall scored in the slot, Rowney on the top of the crease, Frattin from the high slot and LaPoint from the point. Frattin’s goal was his league-leading 21st of the season, and it snapped a five-game goal drought. It also essentially put the game away, making it 4-0.

“Overall, in most areas, it was probably our most complete period of the season,” Hakstol said. “We played the way we wanted to play. We played five-on-five and our specialty teams did a good job.”

FIRST PERIOD: 1, UND, Nelson (Marto) 5:03.

SECOND PERIOD: 2, UND, Hextall (Gregoire, MacWilliams) 2:21. 3, UND, Rowney (Kristo) 4:31. 4, UND, Frattin (Malone, Trupp) 18:35 (pp). 5, UND, LaPoint (Nelson, Kristo) 19:30.

THIRD PERIOD: 6, UND, Gleason (Kristo) 2:03.

SAVES: UND, Dell 2-6-13–21. CC, Howe 8-15-1–24, Thorimbert x-x-2–2.


Schlossman writes for the Grand Forks Herald