GOPHERS MEN'S HOCKEY GAMEDAY
NCAA Fargo Regional championship at Scheels Arena
5:30 p.m. Saturday vs. St. Cloud State * ESPNU, 103.5-FM, 1130-AM
Gophers at a glance: Minnesota (27-9-1) is in a regional final for the third consecutive year and will try to advance to its second straight Frozen Four. The Gophers, the No. 1 overall seed in the tournament, defeated Canisius 9-2 in the semifinals on Thursday as 14 different Minnesota players registered at least one point. Leading the way was Bryce Brodzinski, who had a third-period hat trick and an assist. Down 2-1 in the second period, the Gophers tied it on Aaron Huglen's goal and went ahead late in the period on Connor Kurth's tally. … Through Thursday, Logan Cooley (19 goals, 36 assists, 55 points) led the Gophers and ranked second nationally in scoring, and his assists were tied for the national lead. Linemates Jimmy Snuggerud (21-29-50) is fifth nationally in scoring, while Matthew Knies (21-20-41) is tied for the lead in game-winning goals with seven. Goalie Justen Close is 24-9-1 with a 2.02 goals-against average and .927 save percentage.
Huskies at a glance: St. Cloud State (25-12-3) will try to advance to its second Frozen Four in three years. The No. 2-seed Huskies beat Minnesota State Mankato 4-0 in the semifinals, getting a 34-save shutout from Jaxon Castor and a goal and an assist from both Veeti Miettinen and Grant Cruikshank. Midway through the game, St. Cloud State had only seven shots on goal before Miettinen's power-play marker shifted momentum. … Jami Krannila (21-19-40) leads the Huskies in scoring, while Cruikshank (23-14-37), Miettinen (12-24-36) and Zach Okabe (18-18-36) are close behind. Castor (14-7-1, 1.97, .925) has posted back-to-back shutouts and blanked the Gophers on 23 saves in a 3-0 Huskies win on Jan. 7. A night later, he made 28 saves as the Gophers won 2-1 in overtime.