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UND to play night game at NCHC Frozen Faceoff semifinals

The Fighting Hawks will take on Western Michigan in St. Paul's Xcel Energy Center

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UND freshman forward Matteo Costantini slams the puck past Colorado College goaltender Matt Vernon (30) and Tigers defenseman Connor Mayer (18) in the second period of game two of the NCHC quarterfinals series at Ralph Engelstad Arena in Grand Forks on Saturday, March 12, 2022.
Nick Nelson / Grand Forks Herald

ST. PAUL, Minn. — UND will get the prime time game Friday at the National Collegiate Hockey Conference Frozen Faceoff.

The Fighting Hawks (24-12-1) will take on Western Michigan at 7:37 p.m. Friday in the Xcel Energy Center in a semifinal game. Denver will play Minnesota Duluth at 4:07 p.m. Friday in the other semifinal.

The winners will play for the NCHC playoff title at 7:38 p.m. Saturday.

UND reached the Frozen Faceoff by sweeping Colorado College in a best-of-three quarterfinal series in Ralph Engelstad Arena this weekend. The Fighting Hawks won both games 2-1.

UND won the NCHC playoff title last season, beating St. Cloud State 5-3 in the final. That tournament was held in Grand Forks because of the coronavirus pandemic. The 2020 tournament was canceled because of the pandemic.


Friday's games will be the NCHC's first in the Xcel Energy Center since 2019. UND did not make it to the semifinals that season.

Afternoon vs. night semifinals

The Fighting Hawks reached the Frozen Faceoff semifinals all four years the event was held at the Target Center in Minneapolis.

UND played the afternoon semifinal game in 2015 (loss to St. Cloud State) and 2016 (loss to Minnesota Duluth). The Fighting Hawks played the night game in 2014 (loss to Miami) and 2017 (win over Denver).

The Frozen Faceoff was moved to the Xcel Energy Center in 2018.

UND played in the afternoon semifinal game that year, losing to St. Cloud State in overtime. The Fighting Hawks came back the next day and beat Minnesota Duluth to get third place.

The third-place game is not part of the tournament this year.

Instead, the Minnesota Wild will host the Chicago Blackhawks at 1 p.m. in the Xcel Energy Center before the NCHC title game.

NCHC Frozen Faceoff

4:07 p.m. — Denver vs. Minnesota Duluth (CBS Sports Network)
7:37 p.m. — North Dakota vs. Western Michigan (CBS Sports Network)
7:38 p.m. — Semifinal winners (CBS Sports Network)

Schlossman has covered college hockey for the Grand Forks Herald since 2005. He has been recognized by the Associated Press Sports Editors as the top beat writer for the Herald's circulation division four times and the North Dakota sportswriter of the year once. He resides in Grand Forks. Reach him at bschlossman@gfherald.com.
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