3/19 Recap: Eids guides Sioux; McNabb chips in

Brad Eidsness made 23 saves Friday as #5 North Dakota trumped #1 Denver in the WCHA semifinal, 4-3. The Chestermere, Alberta native, who made a highlight reel save with his skate midway through the third period, was beaten by a 4-4 wrister from the dot, another wrister from the point, and a quick backhand down low in the final minute. Corey Fienhage finished +1 on the Sioux blueline. North Dakota moves on to face #6 St. Cloud State for the Broadmoor Trophy on Saturday. An Eidness start would be the second consecutive weekend of back-to-back-to-backers for the sophomore.

Connor Knapp stopped all four shots he faced in the final 12:53 of relief as #2 Miami lost their CCHA semifinal to #17 Michigan, 5-2 in Joe Louis Arena. Knapp is expected to get the start when the RedHawks play what should be a hotly contested third place game with #8 Ferris State on Saturday afternoon. A solid performance could see him keep the starting gig into the NCAA tourney after three poor showings by Hobey Baker finalist Cody Reichard.

In the Hockey East semifinal, Drew MacKenzie (-1) posted three shots on goal as #14 Vermont was shut out by #4 Boston College, 3-0. Jimmy Hayes (TOR) had a goal and two assists, while Chris Kreider (NYR) added a goal and an assist to pace the Eagles. The Catamounts season is for now on hold as they will be in the running for an at-large bid when the NCAA tournament field is announced on Sunday.

In the WHL playoffs, Brayden McNabb hit for a pair of assists as Kootenay defeated Medicine Hat, 6-3. Trailing 1-0 in the first period, the 6'4 defenseman helped put Kootenay on the board when his high wrist shot was deflected past the Tigers Tyler Bunz. Earlier in the day, McNabb was named a WHL Eastern Conference First Team All Star. The Ice will look to hold serve entering game #2 Saturday in Cranbrook.

In the QMJHL, Luke Adam (-2) and Jacob Lagacé (-2) each had assists as Cape Breton opened their playoff year with a 6-3 loss to Moncton. Adam, who won just 8 of 21 faceoffs, saw his line get outplayed by the Cats counter-punching trio led by Kelsey Tessier (3G, 1A). Maxime Legault (-1) picked up a pair of minor penalties for the losing side. Game #2 will be played on Saturday.

Jordon Southorn registered a game-high six hits as PEI got blasted 8-3 by Saint John. The Rocket fall behind 1-0 in their best-of-seven first round series, with the two clubs playing it back on Saturday.

In the USHL, Mark Adams was -1 as Chicago lost to Team USA, 5-3.
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