UMD Bulldogs Fall to Denver Pioneers 3-2 in NCAA National Championship
The UMD Bulldogs Men's Hockey Team hit the ice on Saturday night against the Denver Pioneers at the United Center in Chicago in search of their second national championship title. The #2 Bulldogs and #1 Pioneers were the two teams that owned the top of the rankings through the season, making this NCHC faceoff for a national title all that much more fitting.
The Pioneers came out strong early in the first period, spending a lot of time in the UMD zone. As the period continued, the Bulldogs found their footing, and were able to apply some pressure of their own. In the end, neither team was able to score in the opening frame.
Denver again came out strong to open the second period with Jarid Lukosevicius scoring back-to-back goals separated by 16 seconds in the first 5 minutes. Alex Iafallo cut the Denver lead in half with a power play goal at the 7:16 mark, but Lukosevicius would complete a hat trick 5 minutes later to give Denver the 3-1 lead to end the second period.
The Bulldogs hit the ice in the third period with avengance, maintaining regular pressure in the Denver end. Riley Tufte cut the Denver lead in half at the 14:39 mark in the third. With the score 3-2 in favor of the Pioneers, UMD pulled Hunter Miska for an extra attacker to attempt to tie the game as the period drew to a close, but it wouldn't be enough. Denver won 3-2, ending an incredible season for the Bulldogs.