Twenty minutes away from its first national championship game appearance in 11 years and holding a two-goal lead, Minnesota Duluth saw its dreams dashed as Northeastern rallied in the third period, then scored in overtime for a 3-2 victory in the NCAA women's Frozen Four semifinals on Thursday in Erie, Pa.
Skylar Fontaine scored 19:34 into overtime as the Huskies completed a rally and advanced to the national championship game for the first time. Northeastern (22-1-1) will face the winner of Thursday's night's semifinal between No. 2 seed Wisconsin and No. 3 Ohio State at 6:30 p.m. Saturday (ESPNU).
The Bulldogs (12-7) got second-period goals from Mannon McMahon and Taylor Anderson, while goalie Emma Soderberg made 44 saves.
Maureen Murphy and Katy Knoll scored for Northeastern, and Aerin Frankel made 26 saves.
On the winning play, Fontaine pounced on a Bulldogs turnover and took a shot that popped over Soderberg and into the net.
McMahon nearly won it for UMD with 51 seconds left in the third period on a two-on-one rush, but Frankel, a Patty Kazmaier Award finalist, made a glove save.
At 10:45 of overtime, UMD's Anna Klein made a strong move to the goal and had Frankel out of position with an open cage, but the goalie got her glove on the puck just in time to prevent a shot. UMD's Clara Van Wieren rang a shot off the post three minutes later.
After a scoreless first period, the Bulldogs seized momentum in the second and took a 2-0 lead. McMahon scored her first goal of the second on a rebound at 10:03. The play went under video review for goalie interference as Frankel became tangled with the Bulldogs' Naomi Rogge and was ruled good.
On the shift after the Bulldogs killed a Northeastern power play — with Soderberg making a point-blank save on a one-timer by Alina Mueller — Anderson took a pass from Klein and beat Frankel for a 2-0 lead at 15:30.
UMD weathered 50 seconds of a five-on-three Northeastern power play to end the second period, but the Murphy scored 43 seconds into the third just as the five-on-three ended to trim the lead to 2-1.
Northeastern tied the score 2-2 at 5:30 of the third when Knoll, driving to the net, took a pass from Andrea Renner in the left corner and beat Soderberg. Renner started the play with by stealing the puck form the Bulldogs.
The Star Tribune did not travel for this game. This article was written using the television broadcast and video interviews before and/or after the game.
Award finalistsThree WCHA coaches — Minnesota Duluth' Maura Crowell, Wisconsin's Mark Johnson and Ohio State's Nadine Muzerall — are among the finalists for the American Hockey Coaches Association women's coach of the year award.
Other finalists include Colgate's Greg Fargo, Northeastern's Dave Flint and Penn State's Jeff Kampersall. The winner will be announced Friday.