Healthy again, Bulldog men look to bounce back against Denver

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The then-number one ranked University of Minnesota Duluth (UMD) men’s hockey team wasn’t able to overcome an injury and illness riddled roster last weekend, suffering their first sweep of the season to Northern Michigan University.

"We’ve dealt with it since the Minnesota series basically," UMD head coach Scott Sadelin stated during a press conference Wednesday. "Pretty much all year we haven’t had a full compliment of players, whether it starts with [Luke] Mylymok being out early, then Zach’s [Stejskal] deal, then Luke [Loheit] goes down in injures, and that’s part of the game."

When discussing the players filling those empty gaps, senior forward and captain Noah Cates said, "it shouldn’t matter who you’re playing with, we’re all comfortable with each other, we’ve all played with each other in practice. You’ve just got to make the most of it and find a way to squeak out those wins when you’re facing adversity in the lineup."

On the bright side for Bulldog fans, Sandelin said he expects almost everyone from their short term injury and illness list to return, including starting goaltender Ryan Fanti now off of Covid-19 protocols. Louie Roehl is the exception, as of Wednesday he’s considered day-to-day.

No. 5 UMD (10-5-1) will look to bounce back this weekend hosting the No. 11 University of Denver. This will mark their first meeting since the Bulldogs earned the sweep in the National Collegiate Hockey Conference (NCHC) Pod in Dec. 2021. Puck drop Friday is set for 7pm at AMSOIL Arena.