North Dakota Hockey Clinches Penrose Cup & NCHC Title
GRAND FORKS, N.D.-- Freshman Shane Pinto's overtime goal two minutes into overtime propelled host North Dakota to at least a share of the National Collegiate Hockey Conference's regular season title with a 2-1 win over No. 16/14 Western Michigan Saturday evening at Ralph Engelstad Arena. It marked the third time in the seven-year existence of the league that North Dakota has hoisted the Penrose Cup and first since 2016.
WMU appeared to have won it early in the extra frame when Rhett Kingston scored, however, it was waved off due to goalie interference. A few short moments later, Pinto potted his team-leading 16th goal to set the building into chaos mode, celebrating its third Penrose Cup and 18th overall conference championship.
North Dakota (25-4-4, 16-3-3-2 NCHC) will take to the road to finish out the regular season at Omaha next Friday and Saturday before hosting the quarterfinal round of the NCHC Playoffs Mar. 14-16.