No. 12 Cornell to play No. 11 UMD in their season opening game

Published: Oct. 25, 2023 at 8:25 PM CDT
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DULUTH, MN. (Northern News Now) - The University of Minnesota Duluth men’s hockey team had their first game on the road last Saturday against Bemidji State during a home-and-home series but now they will spend the weekend in Ithaca, New York for their first away series.

Cornell University, which is currently ranked No. 12, hosts the series against UMD with no games yet played in their 2023-24 season.

However, the Bulldogs come into the game undefeated on the season with three straight wins after a couple of ties in the first two games.

The two teams faced each other last October at Amsoil Arena for two games that UMD won 3-2 and 4-2. The second game of the series was highly penalized which is something the Bulldogs have been using to their advantage again this season.

The Bulldogs are currently first in the nation with 11 power-play goals on the season, led by UMD’s points leader Ben Steeves who has four of his own which is good enough for second in Division I. They are also making the most of their opportunities as they are second in power-play percentage behind only Western Michigan who have four power-play goals this season.

“We definitely have to keep doing the job on special teams because our powerplay has been a huge boost for us, Its given us a lot of momentum, Its scored some big goals, Its given us leads, so hopefully it continues. It’s gonna get harder, we know that. Possession is gonna be tough,” said head coach Scott Sandelin before shifting his focus onto the matchup ahead. “They’re big, they’re strong, they outnumber you. So again it comes back to battles, We have to win battles, and when you don’t have plays you have to put the pucks in the right areas so that you’re not starting their transition because they are a good transition team too.”

The puck drop at Lynah Rink is set for 6 p.m. on Friday and Saturday.

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