6:40 p.m. MDT — Eagles win, 6-1. North Dakota’s Jake Marto broke Muse’s shutout bid with 1:16 to play, firing the puck over the left shoulder of the BC dufflebag. BC goes back to the championship game for the third time in three years, and we will see if that third time is the charm. For the Sioux, possibly the most shocking and frustrating of the three straight semifinal losses to BC, as it didn’t look like any of the UND players had their best game. This will be the second straight year without a WCHA team in the final, following seven straight years with one from 2000-06 (and six titles). And, it will be the second straight matchup between BC and a team from the CCHA. That’ll do it for Semifinal One.
6:10 p.m. MDT — 14:17 left now and still 6-0 Eagles. A high-stick called on BC’s Carl Sneep gives the Sioux their sixth power play of the game.
5:45 p.m. MDT — End of two now, BC ahead 6-0. In the department of “Stat of the night that doesn’t mean anything”, shots in the game are now 21-17 Eagles after an 8-5 edge in the second. This is only the second time all year that Lamoreux has given up five or more goals (UNH, 7-4 loss w/two empty-netters on Dec. 29) and just the third time he has even been beaten three times. I have to think even the most ardent Eagle followers didn’t see this coming. By the way, the Notre Dame-Michigan semifinal will start a half hour later than expected, at 7:30 p.m. local time (8:30 Central, 9:30 Eastern). This one should end around 6:45 and they’ll need about 40-45 minutes for the second game warmups and then to make ice.
5:39 p.m. MDT — Not letting up, BC has gone up 6-0 now as Gerbe fed Ben Smith on a 2-on-1 for Smith’s 24th of the year. That came at 11:58, and we now have 2:05 left in the second. We’ve been poring over the record books, and the last time a team won by six or more goals in the semifinals was 25 years ago — ironically, BC lost to Denver, 10-4, in Boston on March 17, 1973.
5:19 p.m. MDT — It’s the Nathan Gerbe show. Mr. Hobey Hat Trick has seemingly dashed any hopes of a Sioux comeback by scoring his third of the game, a power play goal at 6:37, to make it 5-0. Gerbe lifted a backhander over Lamoreux’s stacked pads from the side of the crease for his 33rd of the year. He has a goal of each type in this game — shorthanded, even strength and power play. Of note, the Sioux lost junior D Taylor Chorney to a leg injury early in the period following a collision with an Eagle.
4:54 p.m. MDT — Mercifully for the Sioux and Lamoreux, the first period comes to an end with BC ahead by a commanding 4-0 lead. North Dakota had not allowed more than one goal in the first period all season. And, four goals is the magic number for the Eagles — scoring four or more, BC is 22-0 this year and 88-0-1 since Oct. 17, 2003. The last time BC lost when putting up four goals, the team that beat them was…you guessed it, North Dakota. 6-4 was the score. Shots in the first were 13-12 BC.
4:51 p.m. MDT — Holy cow! Two more BC goals and it’s a one-sided game just like that. Lamoreux has had probably his worst period of the season. First it was Gerbe scoring again with a shot from the goal line extended that snuck through Lamoreux’s pads at 15:13 — the Hobey nominee tallied his second in less than two minutes. That came after a shot off the wing that hit Lamoreux in the shoulder, seeming to catch him by surprise. (Should have been a 4-on-4 situation — with the teams skating 5-on-5 but each with two players in the box, referee Shegos then sent off a player for each team at 14:59, but manpower didn’t change.) Then with just :15 remaining in the period, the Eagles’ Pat Gannon stole the puck behind the Sioux net and sent it out to Dan Bertram high in the slot for a quick one-timer that made it 4-0.
4:37 p.m. MDT — BC has struck for two goals to take a 2-0 lead. Andrew Orpik converted a 2-on-1 feed from Kyle Kucharski at 7:08 to make it 1-0. Then Hobey Hat Trick honoree Nathan Gerbe scored on a shorthanded breakaway for a 2-0 lead at 13:14. That goal came just after some good chances on a Sioux power play — North Dakota’s power play has been very good this period, but they’ve hit a post and John Muse has been strong for BC.
3:53 p.m. MDT — We’re just about ready for the first semifinal here in Denver. John Muse gets the start in net for BC, while it’ll be Jean-Philippe Lamoreux for North Dakota. BC will start its second line with Dan Bertram centering Matt Price and Pat Gannon, and Nick Petrecki with Carl Sneep on defense. For the Sioux, it’ll be their second line as well, Rylan Kaip between Matt Watkins and Matt Frattin, and Joe Finley and Chay Genoway are the defensive pair. Matt Shegos of the CCHA will be the referee.