Duluth – Casey Mittelstadt and Rem Pitlick scored goals in the second period and Eric Schierhorn stopped 26 shots as the No. 3 Gophers men’s hockey team beat Union 2-0 on Saturday afternoon in the third-place game of the Ice Breaker Tournament at Amsoil Arena.
Minnesota had lost 4-3 to No. 6 Minnesota Duluth in overtime the night before with Schierhorn making 40 saves. The junior from Anchorage, Alaska, continued seeing the puck well against the No. 16 Dutchmen in his 77th consecutive start since his freshman year — one shy of the program record.
“It’s funny, I didn’t feel as good tonight [as Friday]. I let out a couple rebounds,” Schierhorn said after his ninth career shutout. “But the defense was really good. They bailed me out a couple times, and we got a few lucky bounces.”
This game was a rematch of the teams that played for the 2014 NCAA championship in Philadelphia. The Dutchmen won that night, 7-4.
But nobody on the Gophers was thinking of that game — not after losing to UMD for the eighth time in a row.
The Gophers (1-1) outshot the Dutchmen 7-1 in the first five minutes; Union’s only shot came on a power play. And Minnesota finished the scoreless opening period with an 18-9 shot advantage.
Mittelstadt, a highly touted freshman forward from Eden Prairie, scored his first college goal at 3 minutes, 43 seconds of the second period.
Pitlick, a sophomore forward, scored on a power play at 10:09 — after the Union was penalized for too many men on the ice — with Schierhorn gettting one of the assists. The Gophers were 1-for-5 on the power play, Union 0-for-5.
Jake Kupsky made 34 saves for Union, which had lost 6-3 to Michigan Tech in its first Ice Breaker game.
The Gophers killed a five-minute penalty at 7:46 of the third period when defenseman Ryan Lindgren got the major and a game misconduct for contact to the head.
“We were a little reserved [vs. UMD],” said Schierhorn, who had eight saves in the third period. “Today we were determined to go out and get it.”