DULUTH – Getting help from the freshmen class, Minnesota-Duluth began their pre-season with a large-margined victory over Lakehead University, 7-1.
Bulldog freshman Carson Soucy was the first to strike, beating Lakehead goaltender Jeff Bosch and giving the Bulldogs an early 1-0 lead. Justin Crandall buried the only other tally in the first period, which ended in favor of the home team, 2-0. Lakehead came out with a little more determination in the second period, scoring on a power play to cut UMD’s lead, but freshman Kyle Osterberg would find the back of the net in the second period as well to keep the two-goal lead. A four-goal third period from Joe Basaraba, Austin Farley, and Dominic Toninato (2 goals) would eventually close the game at the final 7 to 1 score.
What I Saw
Lakehead played a physical game from the beginning, which caused early problems for Dogs, who were still adjusting to new linemates. It took a period, but Minnesota-Duluth did eventually find the chemistry between lines, which really began to shine in the third period when goals were being scored from a variety of players.
The Bulldogs gave each goaltender a period to play, which was convenient for analyzing, but made predictions as to who starts next weekend worse due to the amount of shots and actual scoring chances each goalie was confronted with.
What I Thought
Scoring really wasn’t a question mark for the Dogs coming into the season, as the most dominating class was last year’s freshmen. With that being said, the power play struggled to convert on six attempts, which is frightening for a team who’s shown a strong special teams in past years.
Defensively, I thought the Dogs played okay. They were able to get help from some of the younger d-players, which was another question mark entering the season. It was hard to judge how each goalie played due to the fact that Lakehead, in theory, shouldn’t have anywhere near the talent that NCHC teams have. Obviously, this Friday will be the real test.
What They Said
UMD coach Scott Sandelin said, “I liked our third period; not just because we scored goals, but we played the game the right way. We didn’t get goal hungry and we only gave up 2 shots, so it was a good period.”
UMD captain Adam Krause said, “I think we’re going to be a really good team. You can see the guys that can score and move the puck well, even without (Tony) Cameranesi, one of the top guys in the country.”
What Else You Should Know
Tony Cameranesi, who co-led the Bulldogs in scoring last year with 34 points, was out with a lower body injury, but is expected to play on Friday against Michigan Tech.
The Bulldogs had six players with multiple points; two of those players were freshmen. They also outshot Lakehead 53 to 23.