Matt Wellens / Forum News Service
DULUTH — The defenseman who has brought four consecutive championships to the Northland is returning in 2019-20 to make a run at a fifth. Hermantown native Dylan Samberg informed the Duluth News Tribune via text message he will return to Minnesota Duluth for his junior season as the Bulldogs attempt to do what just one program has done in the history of NCAA Division I men’s ice hockey — win three straight national championships.
DULUTH — The back-to-back national champions from Minnesota Duluth lost a second player early to the NHL on Tuesday, April 23, when the Los Angeles Kings announced they signed sophomore defenseman Mikey Anderson to a three-year, entry-level contract. The 19-year-old Anderson, who turns 20 in May, is a 2017 fourth-round draft pick of the Kings, taken 103rd overall that year. By signing, he gives up his final two seasons of NCAA eligibility, just as his older brother, Joey, did a year ago when he left UMD after his sophomore season to sign with the New Jersey Devils.
DULUTH — Scott Sandelin has coached Minnesota Duluth in four national championship games this decade, winning three. The Hibbing native, who just completed his 19th season as head of the Bulldogs, has yet to go back and watch any of those games in their entirety. Sandelin said Wednesday he’s only caught highlights and bits and pieces here and there of his previous wins in 2011 and 2018, and the loss in 2017. He doesn’t expect this year’s 3-0 national championship victory over Massachusetts last Saturday in Buffalo to be any different.
DULUTH — Minnesota Duluth junior wing Riley Tufte is heading to the NHL, but his coach with the Bulldogs is staying put. “I’m not looking for any opportunity,” UMD coach Scott Sandelin said Wednesday, April 17, during his final news conference of the season at Amsoil Arena. A three-time national championship coach with the Bulldogs following Saturday’s 3-0 victory over Massachusetts at the Frozen Four in Buffalo, N.Y., Sandelin has been peppered by the media about making the jump to the NHL.
DULUTH — Minnesota Duluth senior wing Billy Exell wasn’t just after a second consecutive national championship Saturday night, April 13, in Buffalo, N.Y. The native of Thunder Bay, Ontario, was chasing what the Bulldogs’ 2017-18 senior class accomplished in St. Paul. He was pursuing what very few get in college hockey — a victory in their very last game.
DULUTH -- Another Minnesota Duluth men’s hockey season is in the books, which means another Frozen Four has come and gone for ‘Bulldog Country’ as well. Those of us who follow the program are getting spoiled by all these Frozen Four trips. They’re all memorable experiences, whether the Bulldogs win the national championship or fall short. KeyBank Center in Buffalo, N.Y., was the third straight trip for UMD after United Center in Chicago in 2017 and Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul in 2018.
BUFFALO, N.Y. — For seven months, through 41 games, week in and week out, Minnesota Duluth coach Scott Sandelin has been harping on his team about putting together a complete 60-minute performance. Well, was that what you were looking for Saturday, Mr. Sandelin? “You’re damn right it was,” Sandelin said with a giant smile outside the locker room of the Buffalo Sabres following a 3-0 dismantling of Massachusetts in the NCAA championship game at KeyBank Center.
BUFFALO, N.Y. -- With 2:10 remaining in regulation Saturday, April 13, in the NCAA championship game at KeyBank Center, the University of Minnesota Duluth pep band blasted its fight song for the masses. Bulldogs fans weren’t singing along to the song, however. They were well into a chant that would continue until the final buzzer. “Back-to-back! Back-to-back!”
BUFFALO, N.Y. — Growing up in Cohasset, Minn., a young Hunter Shepard was a fan of the Minnesota Gophers. As an impressionable 7- and 8-year-old, he watched players such as Adam Hauser of Bovey, Gino Guyer and Andy Sertich of Coleraine and Travis Weber of Hibbing lead the Gophers to back-to-back national championships in 2002 at Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul and in 2003 at then-HSBC Arena in Buffalo.
BUFFALO, N.Y. — On the eve of the 2019 NCAA Frozen Four, Providence coach Nate Leaman credited the adversity his team faced throughout the year for getting them to Buffalo this year. It’s why the Friars were able to come back from a three-goal deficit in the regional semifinals to beat top-seeded Minnesota State-Mankato.