The Sioux have scored 5 shorthanded goals in their last 11 games. Not too shabby. Their powerplay might not be clicking as we saw in that game against SCSU in early February, but it's still doing well. The trend, of course, is special teams. UND's special teams are on fire right now. Combine that with some good goaltending and you've got a pretty damn good team.
Last night, the Sioux finally snapped that losing streak against the Pioneers, winning 4-3 and setting up a rematch of the 2006 Final Five championship game against SCSU. Behind a great game from Evan Trupp, who has come out of nowhere as of late to become a catalyst for the Sioux, they made goaltender of the year Marc Cheverie look off-balance and at times, silly.
The goal of the game was definitely the game winning goal. It came later in the third period on a penalty kill for the Sioux. Patrick Wiercioch and Evan Trupp were in a footrace for a puck that had been cleared out of the Sioux zone. When it appeared Wiercioch had the edge on Trupp, Trupp danced to the OTHER side of Wiercioch and gained control. He pulled a sick counter move and fed Brad Malone, who beat a standing Marc Cheverie. This goal sealed the deal for the Sioux and caused me to remark to my buddy Steve that the Sioux's passing has just been incredible this run.
In a WCHA Final Five that was surprisingly sterile and goal-absent for the first two games, the third game of the tourney certainly provided some spark to the fans. Last night, pretty much any fan not wearing Sioux stuff was cheering for Denver. I always find that kind of funny, since during the SCSU-Wisconsin game I was more cheering for an arena collapse then anything else.
Check out this youtube video below for the highlights. On Trupp's 2rd goal, look at the zamboni tunnel. The guy jumping and pumping his arms? Yeah, that's me. :-)