NORTH ANDOVER, Mass. - The Merrimack College men's hockey team scored first against two-time defending national champion Minnesota Duluth, but the Bulldogs came back for a 4-1 win Sunday afternoon at Lawler Rink.
Regan Kimens got the Warriors on the board with his third goal of the season early in the second period, but Minnesota Duluth responded with four unanswered goals to silence the upset bid.
Score: #10/11 Minnesota Duluth 4, Merrimack 1
Records: Merrimack (4-12-2, 2-5-2 HEAM) | #10/11 Minnesota Duluth (10-6-1, 6-1-1 NCHC)
Game Duration: 2:16
How It Happened
The two-time defending national champions came out with early momentum. The Bulldogs peppered Warrior goalie Troy Kobryn with 16 shots on goal, but the freshman turned all of them aside to keep the game deadlocked after 20 minutes. He also kicked out all four power play shots from the Bulldogs, who entered the day with the nation's fourth best unit.
Merrimack shook off the rust in the second period and found its game. While shorthanded, Dominic Dockery drew a high sticking minor against the Bulldogs to send the teams to 4-on-4 play early in the frame. After Chase Gresock was released from his penalty to give the Warriors a power play, they converted. Duluth had a failed clearing attempt that pin balled to Zach Uens in the high slot. He fired a shot towards goal that Kimens got a stick to, and deflected it home.
Duluth responded in kind three minutes later when they finally solved Kobryn on a Cole Koepke shorthanded goal.
The Bulldogs went on to take their first lead of the evening late in the period when an odd angle shot from Roth snuck home.
The visitors added an early goal in the third period, which turned out to more than enough to secure the win. Duluth added a fourth marker late in the frame to finish off the 4-1 victory.
Notes & Numbers
Patrick Holway appeared in his first game as a Warrior after he went through NCAA transfer protocol. He finished with three shots on goal and played on Merrimack's top power play unit.
Kobryn ended the night with 34 saves, which matched a career high he set Oct. 17 at Holy Cross.
Uens' assist was his seventh on the campaign, which puts him alone in third in the category on the Warriors.
Merrimack now has at least one power play goal in three of its last four games and has scored five with the extra man during that span.
The Warriors and Bulldogs complete their two-game set Monday afternoon at Lawler Rink. Puck drop is set for 4 pm.