Final, Yale Wins 3-2: The Bulldogs upset second-seeded North Dakota and advance to play Boston College for a berth in the Frozen Four on Sunday at 5:30 p.m.
Junior Denny Kearney led the way for Yale, scoring the game's first two goals. In net, Ryan Rondeau saved 34 of the 36 shots he faced to pick up just his second win of the season in his fourth start.
Third period, 0:20.1, Yale 3-2: Rondeau covers a shot from the point that was tipped.
Third period, 0:29.8, Yale 3-2: Sioux coach Dave Hakstol calls a timeout with the faceoff to Rondeau's left.
Third period, 1:00, Yale 3-2: North Dakota pulls the goalie for an extra attacker.
Third period, 1:50, Yale 3-2: North Dakota going with four forwards on the ice to try to tie this thing up.
Third period, 3:10, Yale 3-2: North Dakota got set up for the first 40 seconds or so, but after Yale was able to clear, the Sioux struggled to enter the zone the next couple times down. Then they were able to get a couple more chances in the last 30 seconds, including a shot by Blood that Rondeau saved with his helmet.
Third period, 5:21, Yale 3-2: Danny Kristo goes to the net hard and gets hauled down by Martin. North Dakota with a chance to tie it on the power play.
Third period, 6:01, Yale 3-2: The Bulldogs aren't sitting back at all. They're still going with two forecheckers and are looking to create offense.
Third period, 8:11, Yale 3-2: Broc Little, who leads the country in goals per game, came storming in on a breakaway, but North Dakota's Jake Marto made a great diving play to poke the puck off his stick. Marto slammed into the post and knocked it off its mooring seconds later, but he's OK.
Third period, 8:55, Yale 3-2: North Dakota has outshot Yale 7-2 in the third. The Fighting Sioux are playing with a ferocity that was clearly absent in the first two periods.
Third period, 14:02, Yale 3-2: And just like that, we have a game. Another great individual effort, this time by Matt Frattin. Came in on a breakaway, got tripped (probably would've been a penalty shot) and somehow managed to roof the puck while sliding on his back. Suddenly the couple hundred Sioux fans in the building have a lot to be noisy about.
Third period, 17:01, Yale 3-1: North Dakota is on the board. Great individual effort by Brett Hextall, the son of former Flyers goalie Ron Hextall. He fended off one defender, then spun around another, cut to the middle and beat Rondeau glove-side with a wrist shot.
End of the second, Yale 3-0: We have an upset in the making, folks. Yale's been among the top 15 teams in the nation all season, so this isn't exactly RIT over Denver, but given the fact that the Bulldogs are missing their third-leading scorer, who they lost in the ECAC quarterfinals to lowly Brown, that North Dakota is coming off a WCHA championship and that Yale has nowhere near the history of North Dakota, this is definitely an upset. It's not shocking that Yale leads — everyone knew it was a good team — but it is shocking that it leads 3-0.
Second period, 2:14, Yale 3-0: Arcobello fires wide from the slot but the rebound caroms straight back out to the slot off the end boards. Arcobello tracks down his own rebound and buries it to give Yale a commanding 3-0 lead.
Second period, 4:12, Yale 2-0: Darcy Zajac drew a penalty shot after being hauled down on a breakaway. He skates in on the penalty shot and rings a snap shot off the left post.
Second period, 4:27, Yale 2-0: Kearney, by the way, is the younger brother of Olympic gold medal skier Hannah Kearney.
Second period, 7:11, Yale 2-0: Kearney puts the Bulldogs up by two with his second of the game. He took a pass from Limbert, skated in on Eidsness, faked like he was going backhand and then stopped on a dime and slid it inside the left post after Eidsness had fallen for the deke. Pretty goal.
Second period, 9:44, Yale 1-0: And then a very questionable tripping call on Brian O'Neill makes it 4-on-4 for 1:27. Looked like O'Neill barely even touched the North Dakota player.
Second period, 10:16, Yale 1-0: Derrick LaPoint is called for a high stick and Yale will be on the power play.
Second period, 11:00, Yale 1-0: Kevin Limbert stickhandles around two North Dakota defenders, but Kearney wasn't ready for his centering pass and it slid just past him.
Second period, 12:19, Yale 1-0: North Dakota with a quick counter-rush after a Yale rush was broken up. Brad Malone throws one to the front of the net and it actually deflects off the skate of a Yale defender, but Rondeau makes the save.
Second period, 15:43, Yale 1-0: After Yale registered the first three shots of the period, North Dakota comes back with two quick chances of its own, but Rondeau stops them both. Rondeau, a senior, has only played in four games this season and 12 in his career, but he's looked calm, cool and collected so far.
Second period, 18:20, Yale 1-0: Yale with a couple more chances on the power play that carried over from the first. North Dakota doing a good limiting the Bulldogs to shots from the perimeter, though. It didn't look like Eidsness had any trouble seeing any of them, either.
End of the first, Yale 1-0: Despite North Dakota's 12-8 advantage in shots, Yale controlled even-strength play for most of the period, especially the last four minutes or so. North Dakota was able to generate some chances on the power play, but the Bulldogs hold a 1-0 lead thanks to Denny Kearney's tip-in goal earlier in the period.
First period, 0:23.0, Yale 1-0: Ben Blood heading off for a cross check and Yale will be on the power play. The Bulldogs have really controlled play for the last couple minutes.
First period, 3:46, Yale 1-0: The Fighting Sioux struggled to get set up on that power play. Yale's aggressive penalty kill did a great job getting in lanes and even started a couple rushes the other way. North Dakota finally broke through with a couple shots in the closing seconds, including one from Matt Frattin that hit Ryan Rondeau in the facemask.
First period, 5:47, Yale 1-0: Yale's Chad Ziegler going off for interference. North Dakota back to the power play.
First period, 6:15, Yale 1-0: Great chance for Yale as Martin fired a slapper from the point that Eidsness came way out to stop. There was a rebound for a second, but Eidsness covered just before a charging Bulldog was able to get there.
First period, 8:50, Yale 1-0: Four more penalties following a post-whistle scuffle: Mike Matczak (boarding) and Mark Arcobello (unsportsmanlike conduct) for Yale, Jason Gregoire (cross check) and Brett Hextall (unsportsmanlike conduct) for UND.
First period, 10:00, Yale 1-0: Jimmy Martin going off for a hook and North Dakota is going on the power play.
First period, 10:51, Yale 1-0: The Bulldogs had two quick shots to start the power play, but Eidsness turned both away. Mark Arcobello had another chance from the doorstep that was also stopped. Penalty killed.
First period, 12:53, Yale 1-0: Evan Trupp called for interference and Yale will head to the power play.
First period, 14:12, Yale 1-0: The Bulldogs strike first. The puck was kind of just bouncing around in the slot until it eventually came back to Thomas Dignard at the left point. He fired a slapper that Denny Kearney deflected up and over Brad Eidsness' left shoulder.
First period, 16:00, 0-0: Apologies for the delayed start, but press conferences from the first game ran a little longer than expected. No score yet. Shots are 2-2.
4 p.m.: In the day’s second game in Worcester, Mass., second-seeded North Dakota will do battle with third-seeded Yale. Faceoff is set for 5 p.m., pending the end time of the Boston College-Alaska game.
The Fighting Sioux have won 12 of their last 13 and are coming off a 5-3 win over St. Cloud State in the WCHA title game. They have a balanced offensive attack led by senior Chris VandeVelde (41 points), sophomore Jason Gregoire (37 points) and freshman Danny Kristo (36 points).
Speaking of balanced offenses, the Bulldogs lead the nation with 4.09 goals per game. However, they’ll be without the services of third-leading scorer Sean Backman (35 points), who fractured his heel two weeks ago in a pool mishap. Yale didn’t respond well in his absence, losing a three-game series to Brown in the ECAC quarterfinals.
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