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UND is in Duluth for a WCHA series with the Bulldogs.
MHKY Travel Blog: The stretch run begins in Duluth
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Updated: Saturday 03/12/2012 11:39:35 (ET)
by Jayson Hajdu, UND Athletic Media Relations
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THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 9, 2012

Bus movie: Shawshank Redemption

5:14 p.m. -- Hello from AMSOIL Arena in Duluth, where the Fighting Sioux are on the ice as I type this.

After a smooth day of travel and some brief down time at the hotel, we arrived at the arena shortly after 4 p.m. It was somewhat of an atypical road practice given that CBS Sports Network is in town to broadcast Friday's game. That meant making a handful of requested players available to the announcers prior to practice. It's during these off-camera chat sessions that the announcers prep for the broadcast, asking the guys about the team, the season, the opponent, etc. In that sense, it felt like a postseason game, where such announcer/player sessions are commonplace.

Ben Holden, Dave Starman and Shireen Saski are the announcers assigned to tomorrow night's game, and they picked the brains of Danny Kristo, Andrew MacWilliam, Mario Lamoureux, Dillon Simpson and Brock Nelson.

Those sessions lasted about 15 minutes and it was back to business as usual for the guys. They'll likely practice for just over an hour today, before heading off to dinner and then back to the hotel.

FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 10, 2012

5:35 p.m. -- My apologies for lack of blog updates so far this weekend. I've been laid up with some kind of virus ever since we got here. However, after plenty of rest and some attention from athletic trainer Mark Poolman -- yes, it's been that kind of year for poor 'Pooly' -- I'm up and at 'em. For now.

No changes to UND's lineup this week other than some shuffling of the defense pairings. Also, junior Aaron Dell will start in goal.

I'm told it will be a capacity crowd tonight. They should be treated to a dandy.

UND Lineup
29 Nelson--10 Knight--7 Kristo
16 MacMillan--27 Rowney--15 Parks
28 Pattyn--9 Lamoureux--13 Gaarder
8 Senkbeil--20 Gleason--14 Dickin

4 Forbort--24 Blood
2 MacWilliam--5 Mattson
18 Simpson--22 Panzarella

32 Dell
31 Eidsness

SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 11, 2012

9:54 a.m. -- A few thoughts on last night's 3-1 win over the Bulldogs:

*One upperclassman told me in the locker room after the game that he thought it was the best game the Sioux have played all year. UND was on top of it's game in all three zones, received above-average goaltending and won a game without relying on the Nelson-Knight-Kristo line to carry the load offensively.

*It will be interesting to see what Coach Hakstol does with the goaltending tonight. He has been rotating Aaron Dell and Brad Eidsness as of late, but Dell was superb last night and may have earned himself a second straight start.

*No new updates on Nick Mattson, so I would assume he is good to go tonight but we'll find out for sure after morning skate. Mattson played the entire third period after heading to the locker room following a hit from behind late in the second period, but many in our chat commented that he didn't quite look the same.

*The coaching staff was pleased with the defensive corps as a whole, but felt senior Ben Blood was dominant. I also thought Derek Forbort was impressive playing in his hometown for the first time. He certainly seems to be playing with a bit more edge since returning to the lineup.

*Was last night a coming out party for the Carter Rowney-Michael Parks-Mark MacMillan line? Aside from producing all three goals, they provided several dominant shifts in the offensive zone. Rowney has found his game over the past several weeks, while his freshman linemates continue to evolve. Both have non-stop motors.

*Finally, it was a treat to work with the CBS Sports Network crew of Ben Holden, Dave Starman and Shireen Saski. Off the air they were exceedingly professional, and I've heard nothing but positive commens so far about their broadcast last night. I'm certainly looking forward to working more with them in the future.

Check back later this afternoon for any lineup updates.

5:43 p.m. -- North Dakota is going with the exact same lineup that produced last night's 3-1 win.

UND Lineup
29 Nelson--10 Knight--7 Kristo
16 MacMillan--27 Rowney--15 Parks
28 Pattyn--9 Lamoureux--13 Gaarder
8 Senkbeil--20 Gleason--14 Dickin

4 Forbort--24 Blood
2 MacWilliam--5 Mattson
18 Simpson--22 Panzarella

32 Dell
31 Eidsness

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