Photo courtesy DU Athletics
For the second straight year, the top-ranked University of Denver Pioneers are going to the Frozen Four.
Troy Terry notched a hat trick, Jarid Lukosevicius tallied two more goals, and Tanner Jaillet stopped 24 shots against the Penn State Nittany Lions in the Midwest Regional Final at the US Bank Center in Cincinnati to earn Denver a trip to Chicago in two weeks.
While Denver dominated most of the game against PSU, it wasn’t smooth sailing for all 60 minutes. The Pios opened up a 2-0 lead early in the first period, but by the 2:02 mark of the second period, the Nittany Lions had tied it up and DU’s path to Chicago was looking somewhat foggy.
Apparently, a tie game in the second period, the period Denver has owned all year, with a Big Ten team was what the Pioneers needed to wake up and play relentless hockey. DU scored three more goals in the second period, including Terry’s first two (both assisted by Henrik Borgström), to put the game out of reach.
Penn State added a goal just past the midway point of the third period, but Terry answered a few minutes later with an empty-net goal to complete the hat trick and seal Denver’s trip to Chicago and their second straight Frozen Four.
Thanks to an overtime upset of UMass-Lowell, the #4-seed Notre Dame Fighting Irish, the Frozen Four’s hosts, will be Denver’s first opponent in Chicago. Minnesota Duluth and Harvard are the other two teams that complete the Frozen Four.
Denver and Notre Dame will play the late semifinal next Thursday night (7:30 PM MT) but stay tuned to LetsGoDU for all the Frozen Four coverage over the next two weeks.