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North Dakota scores 3 goals in final 1:44, beats Wisconsin 5-2 to reach NCAA regional final

Friday, 03.28.2014 / 11:14 PM / News

The Canadian Press

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North Dakota scores 3 goals in final 1:44, beats Wisconsin 5-2 to reach NCAA regional final

CINCINNATI - Mark MacMillan deflected a shot into the goal with 1:44 to go, rallying North Dakota to a 5-2 victory over top-seeded Wisconsin on Friday night in the NCAA tournament's Midwest Regional.

No. 3 North Dakota (24-13-3) will face second-seeded Ferris State in the final Saturday. Ferris State beat Colgate 1-0 in the other semifinal.

The seven-time national champions got an at-large berth when Wisconsin (24-11-2) beat Ohio State for the Big Ten title, eliminating the Buckeyes. North Dakota then knocked out its long-time rival with three late goals.

MacMillan deflected Brendan O'Donnell shot from the right wing into the net — the goal was upheld on review — to break a 2-all tie. Rocco Grimaldi scored a pair of empty-net goals in the final minute.

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The biggest part for us is that it's a home game. We know how special the fans here are and how much the fan base has grown in the last decade, and how passionate they are. I don't think a lot of people around the hockey world know that or appreciate that yet, and I think that it's great that this city is getting recognition for how passionate they are about hockey.

— Washington Capitals goalie Braden Holtby on the 2015 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic