GRAND FORKS, N.D. – Kevin Regan (South Boston, Mass.) turned away 34 shots, but it was not enough as the 10th-ranked University of New Hampshire men’s ice hockey team fell to seventh-ranked North Dakota, 3-1, on Friday night at Ralph Engelstad Arena.
UNH moves to 9-5-1 overall, while the Sioux are now 9-6-1. The Wildcats drop its first-ever match up at Engelstad Arena.
After over 19 minutes of scoreless hockey, the Sioux broke the deadlock when Darcy Zajac potted an even-strength goal, his first of the season, finding the right-side of the net at 19:21. Ryan Martens, who had the centering pass that set up the tally, and Kyle Radke were credited with assists.
A scoreless second period included seven penalties, the first four were on the Wildcats and the final three were on UND. UNH held a slim 11-10 shot advantage in the period.
Jerry Pollastrone (Revere, Mass.) scored the equalizer for the Wildcats on a nifty tip shot off a Peter LeBlanc (Hamilton, Ontario) centering pass. Pollastrone swatted the puck out of mid-air past Fighting Sioux netminder Jean-Philippe Lamoureux. Bobby Butler (Marlboro, Mass.) was also credited with an assist on the goal.
UND answered with a pair goals just 41 seconds apart that came just 27 seconds after the first UNH tally. The first of the two goals was scored by Evan Trupp and was assisted by Matt Frattin and Chay Genoway at 6:16. The second tally came at 6:57 as Martens netted his first goal of the season. Radke and Robbie Bina were credited with assists.
Regan turned away double figures in all three periods including 13 in the opening stanza. On the other side, Lamoureux stopped 29 shots en route to the win.
UNH and UND complete this two-game set on Saturday night. Puck drops at 8 p.m. (EST) at Ralph Engelstad Arena. The Wildcats return home on Jan. 6 (2 p.m.) with a non-conference game against St. Lawrence.