UMD Men’s Hockey Team Not Taking For Granted Fourth Straight Frozen Four
The Bulldogs will face UMass in the national semifinals on Thursday. Puck drop is set for 8:00 p.m.
DULUTH, Minn. – It’s officially Frozen Four week for the UMD men’s hockey team, a place they have been to four straight times. And while the accomplishment is impressive, it’s just business as usual for the players.
“We’ve had three shots at it in my career, my class and we’ve got there every single year so it’s pretty special. This year obviously, everything that we’ve sacrificed and the ups and downs that we’ve had to go through. I think it makes it that much better,” senior forward Nick Swaney said.
“It’s supposed to be a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity and it seems that we just get to keep on doing it. There’s 60 teams in the NCAA for Division I hockey and there’s a lot that don’t even make the tournament. And here we’ve built a culture where we would be upset if we didn’t make the tournament. and maybe even upset if we didn’t make the Frozen Four,” junior forward Tanner Laderoute added.
And even through all of the success of the past half decade, the Bulldogs have still found ways to play with a chip on their shoulder.
“Obviously the three-peat is really cool and we want to win for those guys on last year’s team that weren’t able to have their chance at it. At the same time, we’re as a team, focusing on winning it all and we look all around that it’s just an unbelievable culture here and winning it for this program would be special for a lot of people, even the ones that aren’t playing,” junior forward Cole Koepke said.
“It will definitely mean a little bit too to kind of fight for them too, the [Hunter Shepard], the [Nick Wolff], the [Scott Perunovich] that got to move on, the [Justin Richards]. It’s huge. It just goes back to that culture. We just expect to be here and we want to win every single year and we’re going to do the best we can to make that happen,” Laderoute added.
UMD will face UMass in the national semifinals on Thursday. Puck drop is set for 8:00 p.m.