ST. CLOUD, Minn. – Teemu Pulkkinen had a goal and an assist, and head coach Dean Blais earned his 400th career win as the No. 20 Omaha hockey team held off No. 17 St. Cloud State, 3-1, on Friday night.
The Mavericks improved to 9-5-3 overall and 4-3-0-0/0 in the NCHC, moving them past St. Cloud State and Western Michigan into third place. They’re also 3-0-2 on their six-game road trip which concludes against the Huskies on Saturday at 7:07 p.m.
St. Cloud State fell to 7-7-1 overall and 3-5-1-0/0 in the conference, good for fifth place. The Huskies have lost five straight at home.
The Mavericks forged ahead at 9:48 of the first period. Austin Ortega set up Fredrik Olofsson in the low slot. Olofsson’s first shot was blocked, but he got his own rebound and fired it past goalie Zach Driscoll for his third goal of the season.
The Huskies tied the game on a power play 1:37 into the second period. Dennis Cholowski fired a shot from the slot that beat Evan Weninger who was screened on the play.
UNO retook the lead late in the period. Luc Snuggerud’s shot from the point flew over the net. Pulkkinen scooped up the puck and threw a sharp angle backhander that slipped past Driscoll at 15:54.
The Mavericks started the third period with a power play but couldn’t convert. However just as it ended, Ian Brady threw a long pass up ice to Justin Parizek who scored on the breakaway to make it 3-1.
Weninger finished the game with 40 saves, his second straight start with 40 or more stops. SCSU outshot the Mavericks, 41-24.
Blais is now 400-236-61 in more than 17 years as a head coach including a mark of 138-121-28 at UNO.
The win was just the fourth for the Mavericks at St. Cloud State, improving their record to 4-10-1 at the Herb Brooks National Hockey Center.