Denver Storms back from two-goal deficit to Defeat Omaha

Denver hockey (23-8-1, 16-6-0) trailed Omaha, 2-0, in the second period when Brett Stapley finally scored for the Pioneers at 17:10. Trailing by a goal heading into the final twenty minutes, DU would need freshman goaltender Matt Davis to hold Omaha down until the Pioneers found their scoring touch. DU responded with three powerplay goals in the final period to run away with the game.

In the final period, it took nine minutes for DU’s Carter Savois to find net during a powerplay to knot-up the game. Six minutes later, Mike Benning scored another powerplay goal with assists from Bobby Brink and Cole Guttman for a 3-2 Denver lead. The Denver man advantage led to another goal on a Cameron Wright steal and goal as Denver gained even more breathing room, 4-2. Benning scored an empty-net goal in the final minute, 5-2, final.

Denver had 61 shots, 33 on goal, while Omaha had 22 shots on goal, Davis made some excellent stops to keep the game close until Denver caught fire with four goals in the final period. Denver snapped their powerplay draught with three goals on the night while Omaha went 1-4 with the man advantage.

After the game, David Carle said, “I give our guys credit for sticking with the game…What a performance by Mattie Davis. We talked to the powerplay group about sticking with it (3 power-play goals in the third period). We had to work for it tonight. A gutsy performance all-around by a lot of people.”





4 thoughts on “Denver Storms back from two-goal deficit to Defeat Omaha”

  1. Missed the game last night. How did Davis look? Think he’ll get the nod for the CC series? How about the palyoffs?

  2. Magnus Chrona’s saves percentage has dipped to .901, and it was clear that Davis needed a shot to see if he can be an answer for this team down the stretch…

    Davis was solid-to-very good. A solid NCHC goalie should be expected to let in a couple of goals on the 22 shots Davis saw and that is what happened. He made that saves he needed to make, and didn’t let in a softie in those two goals, which is all you can expect of a goalie who hadn’t started since getting lit-up at BC back in October.

    The first Omaha goal was Nate Knoepke’s long wrist shot from just inside the blue line that was tipped out front by Joey Abate, so not much Davis could have done about that one. The second Omaha goal was a juicy PP rebound that three DU defenders and Davis could not clear. Taylor Ward, who leads the country in PPGs, had half an open cage to shoot into and he doesn’t miss those. DU certainly could have been better on that sequence, but the fault was more on the defense than on Davis.

    Carle has an interesting decision to make on his goalie for next week. DU is locked into second place in the NCHC, with a very outside shot at first place, but UND controls its own destiny, and will win the Penrose Cup outright if the Hawks can beat Omaha once in Omaha or DU loses once to CC next week. Omaha will be fighting for its life, but UND should win at least once there to secure its third straight regular season title.

    DU plays at CC on Friday night, with Gold Pan already in hand. CC is fighting with Miami at the bottom of the standings to avoid a likely trip to Grand Forks for the NCHC playoffs. Miami just shut out Duluth in Duluth and I’m not sure which opponent I’d rather DU face in the playoffs – both teams play DU tough.

    If I were Carle, I’d certainly play Davis at CC on Friday. It’s good to get him more experience in a hostile venue like CC. If UND wins or DU loses on Friday night, the Penrose Cup is UND’s and DU has little extra to play for on Saturday night beyond pure rivalry pride. In that scenario, I’d play Chrona at home on Saturday night to keep him sharp. If UND should lose on Friday and DU wins, first place would be on the line for the Pios on Saturday and I’d start Davis.

  3. Thanks for the insight Swami. I like your analysis for the upcoming final regular season weekend . It makes a lot of sense.

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