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icehockey-men-d1 flag | March 23, 2014

Minn. St.-Mankato earns WCHA title by beating Ferris St.

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. -- Minnesota State-Mankato downed No. 4 Ferris State 3-1 to claim the 2014 Western College Hockey Association Final Five title.

The Mavericks captured their first WCHA Final Five title with the win and as a result earn the league automatic bid to the NCAA postseason tournament.

The Mavericks scored twice in the first period in earning a quick 2-0 lead after the first period of action. Freshman Mike Huntebrinker chipped a shot over the left shoulder of C.J. Motte after taking a pass from Zach Lehrke at 9:13 for his second goal of the season. Then, at 13:50, sophomore center Teddy Blueger found junior defenseman Brett Stern, who was trailing on a MSU rush into the offensive zone, and Stern ripped a shot past Motte on the stickside for his first goal of 2013-14.

Ferris State cut Minnesota State's lead by one when Gerald Mayhew scored on a scramble in front of the MSU net at the 19:14 mark of the middle period and the two teams entered the second intermission with the Mavericks owning a 2-1 lead.

Minnesota State entered the final period of regulation with a mark of 17-0-0 when leading after two periods of action. And when the final goal of the game came at the 8:38 mark after sophomore Brett Knowles scored following Teddy Blueger's nice play in the offensive zone, the championship became reality.

Minnesota State freshman goaltender Cole Huggins, who has started 19 of the past 21 games for the Mavericks, had 25 saves in the win in upping his won-loss record on the year to 21-7-1.

No. 2 Union (N.Y.) 5, Colgate 2

LAKE PLACID, N.Y. -- In a building full of history thanks to the "Miracle on Ice," Union (N.Y.) made history of its own Saturday night.

Union defeated Colgate 5-2 in the ECAC Hockey championship game at 1980 Rink in Herb Brooks Arena, becoming only the third team in league history to win three consecutive Whitelaw Cups. The last was Boston University in 1977, and Cornell was the other to do it in 1970.

Colin Stevens made 31 saves and Daniel Carr had a goal and two assists for the Dutchmen, who improved to 28-6-4 and await a possible No. 1 seed in the NCAA tournament to be announced Sunday afternoon at 12 p.m. ET. Colgate also awaits news if the Raiders' season will continue, as they now stand 20-13-5.

Matt Hatch, Daniel Ciampini, Mike Vecchione and Max Novak also scored for the Dutchmen, who are now 12-0-1 in the past 13 games.

No. 6 Wisconsin 5, Ohio State 4

ST. PAUL, Minn. -- Facing a hungry Ohio State team in the new Big Ten’s tournament championship game, Wisconsin turned to some old faces to come back from a pair of two-goal deficits and secure a second consecutive conference tournament title, 5-4 thanks to a Mark Zengerle game winner in overtime.

The Badgers (24-10-2) fell into an early 2-0 deficit, and wouldn’t lead the Buckeyes (18-14-5) until Zengerle powered home a loose puck just outside the crease 7:48 into the sudden-death overtime to give the Badgers the win.

The Badgers erased OSU’s 2-0 first period lead with a pair of power-play goals. The first came courtesy of Jake McCabe with 23 seconds remaining in the first period, while Morgan Zulinick knotted up the score 11:24 into the second frame.

Wisconsin wouldn’t stay even for long, as the Buckeyes responded with a Clark Cristofoli tally to edge ahead 3-2 just 1:16 later. Tanner Fritz doubled the OSU lead 13:08 into the third period, seemingly dealing a crippling blow to the Badgers’ title hopes.

But these never-say-die Badgers fought back from the brink, scoring a pair of goals in short order to even the score and send the contest to overtime.

Seniors Jefferson Dahl and Tyler Barnes scored 28 seconds apart to tie the score after Ohio State seemed to take control with their 4-2 lead.

Dahl cut the hole in half after a long shot by Jake McCabe hit Zulinick in front of the net and ricocheted to Dahl, who converted into the open net with 13:28 to go in the final stanza. Barnes quickly followed suit, as Zengerle found Nic Kerdiles near the left circle, before he redirected the pass to an open Barnes just outside the crease.

Just 48 seconds after Ohio State took a commanding advantage, the Badgers found themselves in a 4-4 tie.

It would stay that way until Zengerle picked up the loose puck and deposited it into the OSU net in the overtime period.

No. 7 Massachusetts-Lowell 4, No. 18 New Hampshire 0

BOSTON -- Sophomore goaltender Connor Hellebuyck had another shutout and A.J. White scored one goal and set up two others to lead second-seeded Massachusetts-Lowell to a 4-0 victory against fourth-seeded New Hampshire in the title game of the 30th annual Hockey East Championship on Saturday night in front of 12,051 at TD Garden. The championship was the second ever and second consecutive for the River Hawks (25-10-4) who posted back-to-back 4-0 decisions on the weekend.

A sophomore, Hellebuyck was a unanimous selection as the 2014 William Flynn Tournament Most Valuable Player becoming the first in 30 tournaments to earn the award more than once. For the second consecutive season, he recorded a shutout in the title game, another first, by stopping all 30 UNH shots.

Hellebuyck was joined on the All-Championship team by teammates White, Joe Pendenza who had three assists on Saturday and defenseman Christian Folin as UMass Lowell becomes the seventh team to win back-to-back championships in league history.


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