A look at Michigan's hockey season that ended in Frozen Four

Notre Dame's hockey team scored a game-winning goal in the final seconds of their Frozen Four semifinal game against MI to advance to the National Championship.

"Obviously, we're the underdog in the tournament and we're just happy to be there, and it's bonus hockey for us now, but it's been a great week in Michigan", Wolverines head coach Mel Pearson said.

UMD's sophomore goaltender stopped 19 shots in the Bulldogs' 2-1 Frozen Four semifinal game Thursday evening at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul.

It was his second goal of the night, and it officially punched Notre Dame's ticket to the national title game on Saturday night against the University of Minnesota Duluth.

Kuhlman snatched the puck from one Mavericks defender just past the blue line, deked another defender and drove hard to the net for a backhander that slipped in between the goalie's legs to cut Minnesota State's lead to 2-1. "That's our hope at MI, that every sport can compete for Big Ten championships and when you compete for a Big Ten championship you can compete for a national championship".

The top-seeded Buckeyes (26-9-5) will take on third-seeded Minnesota-Duluth (23-16-3) at 6 p.m. Thursday at the Xcel Energy Center.

Blaine high school graduate Riley Tufte, a first round pick of Dallas, is UMD's leading goal scorer, while UMD defenseman Mikey Anderson played at Hill-Murray high school. That's fine, but the next and final destination for Evans and Notre Dame is just that, the finals.

Bulldogs coach Scott Sandelin has often credited Kuhlman's upbringing for his consistency and work ethic.

"The way we play defensively, teams don't shoot the puck all the time", Shepard said.

"Honestly, it's just kind of a blank to me", Lavigne said after the game. "They made a good play". I think back to the Michigan Tech game where the puck nearly rolled into our net right before we scored the game-winner in overtime. "This is right up there as one of my most enjoyable years and even though we didn't win a national championship, I'm glad our seniors got to experience the Frozen Four". "The doctors told me they're happy with where I am".

It was the fifth meeting of the year between MI and Notre Dame after each won twice in the regular season.

The Bulldogs were 5-8 in one-goal games during the regular season. "The physical impact he had in that game set a tone for our team". "We rely on them to play a lot of quality minutes defensively, but I think Dennis especially has the ability to do more than that". "Bigger city, National Hockey League arena, a lot more media, it's a lot of fun, but I think that experience is going to help us".

Something snapped for the Irish after they scored their first goal on a power play early in the second period.

"All I had to do was lay it up for him", Malmquist said. The Wolverines were extremely hot coming into this game, they just ran into a hotter team tonight. Despite the momentum boost, the Fighting Irish were in a good spot going into the third and didn't waste time proving it.

He committed robbery in the first two minutes of the third period, victimizing both Brendon Kearney and Lakeville native John Wiitala.

  • Arturo Norris