Gophers and North Dakota ... so, they meet again

The Gophers beat Boston University to advance to the regional final, where they will face longtime rival North Dakota again for a berth in the Frozen Four.

view larger photos

  

The WCHA will have at least one team in the Frozen Four.

The Gophers, the regular-season conference champions, and North Dakota, winners of the Final Five three years in a row, will meet for the sixth time this season on Sunday with a trip to Tampa, Fla., at stake.

The Gophers, appearing in their first NCAA tournament since 2008, beat Boston University 7-3 on Saturday at Xcel Energy Center in the second semifinal of the West Regional.

Earlier at the Xcel, the Fighting Sioux advanced with a 3-1 victory over Western Michigan. The announced attendance for the doubleheader was 9,386.

The Gophers (27-13-1) won three of four games with UND during regular-season play but had a classic collapse in the Final Five semifinals. North Dakota, behind 3-0 midway through that game, rallied to win 6-3 at Xcel.

Eight days later the Gophers returned to St. Paul and sent the Terriers (23-15-1) home for good. Forwards from three lines scored for the U as did defensemen Jake Parenteau and Seth Helgeson, who got their second and fifth goals of the season, respectively. The final margin was inflated by two late empty-net goals.

Goals from different players was what Gophers coach Don Lucia wanted. "This time of the year you just can't rely on your key guys," he said. "Some other guys have to step forward and score a big goal."

Jake Hansen's power-play goal, on a deflection in second period, was the game-winner. The senior winger also scored a second goal, his 15th, after BU pulled its goalie.

"[Our] coaches did a great job all week telling us, 'Don't be scared, don't be afraid to win,'"Hansen said. "And there was a lot more talk on the bench when [the Terriers] did score and tied it up. No one got too negative."

Kyle Rau, a 5-8 freshman left winger, scored the Gophers' first goal and had three assists.

The Gophers had leads of 1-0 in the first period and 2-1 in the second. Each time the Terriers tied the score.

"When someone scores on you to tie it up after you had the lead, you get a little down on yourself," Hansen said, "but you just can't. You have to have fight on the bench and fight in your heart."

That pattern of trading goals pattern in this game was broken in the 16th minute of the second period when Helgeson and Hansen scored 29 seconds apart to put the Gophers ahead 4-2.

"Any time it seemed we had some momentum, it seemed like they got a goal and countered," Terriers forward Ross Gaudet said. "I thought we came out in the third period pretty decently."

BU got within one goal again early in the third period. Then, Nico Sacchetti, a part-time fourth-line center, restored the two-goal margin five minutes later.

Gophers goalie Kent Patterson made sure that was enough. He stopped 31 shots.

"I am just happy for our kids," Lucia said. "We had a great regular season, we got back to the Final Five, we won in the NCAA tournament. We made a great jump this year."

One familiar hurdle -- North Dakota -- remains before the Gophers can reach their season-long dream.

"They know us, we know them," Lucia said. "It will be a couple of heavyweights going at it tomorrow, as it should be this time of the year."

  • NCAA WEST REGIONAL HOCKEY TOURNAMENT GOPHERS 7, BOSTON U. 3 Regional final: Gophers vs. North Dakota • 4:30 p.m. today • Xcel Energy Center • TV: ESPNU (1500-AM)
  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

ADVERTISEMENT

Buffalo 12:00 PM
New England
Cleveland 12:00 PM
Baltimore
Dallas 12:00 PM
Washington
Indianapolis 12:00 PM
Tennessee
Jacksonville 12:00 PM
Houston
San Diego 12:00 PM
Kansas City
NY Jets 12:00 PM
Miami
Chicago 12:00 PM
Minnesota
Philadelphia 12:00 PM
NY Giants
New Orleans 12:00 PM
Tampa Bay
Carolina 3:25 PM
Atlanta
Detroit 3:25 PM
Green Bay
Oakland 3:25 PM
Denver
Arizona 3:25 PM
San Francisco
St. Louis 3:25 PM
Seattle
Cincinnati 7:30 PM
Pittsburgh
TBA 1/3/15 2:00 AM
TBA
TBA 1/3/15 2:00 AM
TBA
Toronto 110 FINAL
LA Clippers 98
Boston 88 FINAL
Washington 101
Orlando 102 FINAL
Charlotte 94
Memphis 103 FINAL
Miami 95
Indiana 110 FINAL
Brooklyn 85
New Orleans 100 FINAL
Chicago 107
Atlanta 90 FINAL
Milwaukee 85
Philadelphia 71 FINAL
Utah 88
New York 129 FINAL
Sacramento 135
Minnesota 97 FINAL
Golden State 110
NY Islanders 3 FINAL(SO)
Buffalo 4
Detroit 3 FINAL(OT)
Ottawa 2
Carolina 1 FINAL
Tampa Bay 2
New Jersey 1 FINAL
NY Rangers 3
Boston 2 FINAL
Columbus 6
Winnipeg 4 FINAL(OT)
Minnesota 3
Washington 3 FINAL
Pittsburgh 0
Dallas 4 FINAL
St. Louis 3
Philadelphia 1 FINAL
Nashville 4
Anaheim 1 FINAL(SO)
Arizona 2
Chicago 5 FINAL
Colorado 2
Edmonton 1 FINAL
Calgary 4
San Jose 1 FINAL
Los Angeles 3
Indiana 87 FINAL
Georgetown 91
Maine 43 FINAL
Seton Hall 72
UNC-Wilmington 82 FINAL
Minnesota 108
Georgia State 61 FINAL
Green Bay 78
Jacksonville St 61 FINAL
Jacksonville 75
Kentucky 58 FINAL
Louisville 50
Northern Ky 55 FINAL
Northwestern 76
UAB 58 FINAL
North Carolina 89
IUPUI 55 FINAL
Pepperdine 53
Santa Clara 60 FINAL
St Marys-CA 73
Oakland 56 FINAL
Maryland 72
Gonzaga 87 FINAL
BYU 80
Mercer 77 FINAL
Georgia 86
San Francisco 77 FINAL
Pacific 71
Wright State 55 FINAL
Ohio State 100
Presbyterian 65 FINAL
Virginia Tech 87
Brescia 42 FINAL
Western Ky 89
Tennessee St 46 FINAL
Tennessee 67
Kennesaw St 45 FINAL
Illinois 93
Colorado State 58 FINAL
New Mexico St 57
Portland 61 FINAL
San Diego 58
Wayland Baptist 63 FINAL
Utah State 75
Bristol University 59 FINAL
Weber State 109
Sacramento St 74 FINAL
Utah Valley U 49
Southern Utah 45 FINAL
UNLV 79
SD Christian 50 FINAL
San Diego St 72
Illinois 18 FINAL
Louisiana Tech 35
Rutgers 40 FINAL
North Carolina 21
NC State 34 FINAL
UCF 27
Cincinnati 17 FINAL
Virginia Tech 33
(15) Arizona State 36 FINAL
Duke 31
Miami-Florida 21 FINAL
So Carolina 24
Boston College 30 FINAL
Penn State 31
(25) Nebraska 42 FINAL
(24) USC 45
Texas A&M 12/29/14 1:00 PM
West Virginia
Oklahoma 12/29/14 4:30 PM
(18) Clemson
Arkansas 12/29/14 8:00 PM
Texas
Notre Dame 12/30/14 2:00 PM
(22) LSU
(13) Georgia 12/30/14 5:45 PM
(20) Louisville
Maryland 12/30/14 9:00 PM
Stanford
(9) Ole Miss 12/31/14 11:30 AM
(6) TCU
(21) Boise State 12/31/14 3:00 PM
(12) Arizona
(8) Miss State 12/31/14 7:00 PM
(10) Georgia Tech
(19) Auburn 1/1/15 11:00 AM
(17) Wisconsin
(7) Michigan State 1/1/15 11:30 AM
(4) Baylor
(16) Missouri 1/1/15 12:00 PM
Minnesota
(2) Florida State 1/1/15 4:00 PM
(3) Oregon
(5) Ohio State 1/1/15 7:30 PM
(1) Alabama
Houston 1/2/15 11:00 AM
Pittsburgh
Iowa 1/2/15 2:20 PM
Tennessee
(11) Kansas State 1/2/15 5:45 PM
(14) UCLA
Washington 1/2/15 9:15 PM
Oklahoma State
East Carolina 1/3/15 11:00 AM
Florida
SMU 45 FINAL
(2) Connecticut 96
UCF 64 FINAL
Houston 50
BYU 62 FINAL
Gonzaga 78
Pacific 92 FINAL
San Francisco 54
St Marys-CA 62 FINAL
Santa Clara 61
San Diego 87 FINAL
Portland 65
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

<
Gophers Football Time W L Score
2014 season     
Aug 28 - vs. E. Illinois 6 pmX42-20
Sep 6 - vs. M. Tennessee St. 2:30 pmX35-24
Sep 13 - at TCU 3 pmX30-7
Sep 20 - vs. San Jose St. 3 p.m.X24-7
Sep 27 - at Michigan 2:30 pmX30-14
Oct 11 - vs. Northwestern 11 amX24-17
Oct 18 - vs. Purdue 11 amX39-38
Oct 25 - at Illinois 11 amX28-24
Nov 8 - vs. Iowa 11 amX51-14
Nov 15 - vs. Ohio State 11 amX31-24
Nov 22 - at Nebraska 11 amX28-24
Nov 29 - at Wisconsin 2:30 pmX34-24
Jan 1 - vs. Missouri noon

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: What's your favorite Gophers football uniform colors?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close