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NCAA Hockey Tournament 2011: Minnesota-Duluth, Yale, Michigan Win In First Round

Minnesota-Duluth 2 - Union 0

Minnesota-Duluth goalie Kenny Reiter kept Union shutout for only the third time this season, advancing his Bulldogs to the regional second round for the second time in three years. 

Reiter stopped 32 shots by Union. Union was able to hold Minnesota-Duluth's two point-filled Connolly's (Jack and Mike) off the board, but couldn't stop the rest of the Bulldogs on the power play. Left winger Kyle Schmidt scored with the man advantage in the second half of the first period, giving Minnesota-Duluth the one goal lead into the first intermission. Right winger Justin Fontaine added another power play goal in the second period.

Union had eight power play opportunities, but couldn't convert on any - surprising for a team that had led the nation in power play performance coming into the Regionals. 

Minnesota-Duluth will face Yale Saturday at 6:30 p.m. in Bridgeport, CT.

Yale 2 - Air Force 1 (OT)

Yale played a tighter than expected game with Air Force, a team that squeaked into the tournament. Both teams skated scoreless and un-penalized for the most part during the first period. Yale right wing Brian O'Neill struck first, shooting a goal past Air Force rookie goaltender Jason Torf.

Yale took its time and dominated the game, wearing out Air Force with their play early. Air Force started to rebound late in the second, shooting much more on Yale goalie Ryan Rondeau and bringing the tempo of the game back up. Fourth line center Sean Bertsch broke through, sneaking a goal five-hole on Rondeau to get Air Force on the board.

The two teams skated evenly in the third period, sending the game into overtime. Yale right winger Chad Ziegler rushed the net with a few teammates, creating a lot of busyness in front of Torf, which Ziegler used to his advantage. Ziegler tipped the puck past, winning the game for number one ranked Yale. Yale will face Minnesota-Duluth Saturday in the Bridgeport regional's second round.

Michigan 3 - Nebraska-Omaha 2 (OT)

Michigan advances to the second round of the West Regional in St. Louis with a wildly debated goal in overtime. Michigan sophomore center Kevin Lynch scored at the 2:36 point of the extra period, but the puck looked kicked in by a Nebraska-Omaha player's skate and could not be viewed as crossing the goal line in any views easily attainable by the media. 

Nebraska-Omaha had started out the first period very strong, scoring a shorthanded goal on the stick of left winger Rich Purslow. Third line right winger Alex Hudson netted his thirteenth goal of the season seven minutes later to give the Mavericks the two goal lead.

Michigan was able to shut down Nebraska-Omaha's offense during the second and third periods. Just a minute into the second, senior center Louie Caporusso scored a power play goal, his eleventh of the season. Lynch added the tying goal before the halfway mark of the second period. 

The two teams skated a stalmate during the third, with Nebraska-Omaha unable to convert their two power play opportunities in the period. 

Michigan will play the winner of Boston College - Colorado College on Saturday evening.