Tufte scores in national title game, but UMD falls 3-2 to Denver

Sports Reporter
Sam is the sports reporter for ABC Newspapers, covering high school, junior college and community sports in the area. He joined the staff in October 2016.
Riley Tufte, the 2016 Minnesota Mr. Hockey winner out of Blaine, scored a goal in the NCAA Frozen Four championship for the University of Minnesota Duluth on April 8. It brought the deficit to 3-2 with 5:21 to play, but Denver was able to hold on for the win. (File Photo)
Riley Tufte, the 2016 Minnesota Mr. Hockey winner out of Blaine, scored a goal in the NCAA Frozen Four championship for the University of Minnesota Duluth on April 8. It brought the deficit to 3-2 with 5:21 to play, but Denver was able to hold on for the win. (File Photo)

Former Blaine standout Riley Tufte capped off his freshman season at the University of Minnesota Duluth with a goal in the NCAA Frozen Four championship April 8. The forward’s score brought the UMD deficit to 3-2 with 5:21 remaining in the game.

But No. 1-seeded Denver was able to hold on at the end for the win, capturing its eighth national championship in program history.

The high-scoring Pioneers had all three goals scored by Jarid Lukosevicius in the second period. But UMD came roaring back from a 3-1 deficit, outshooting Denver 17-3 in the final 20 minutes of regulation.

Only one of those shots was able to find the net.

Tufte sniped in his goal off a rebound after Avery Peterson’s shot hit the cross bar and the freshman was in perfect position to follow up.

It was the Bulldogs’ second loss in their last 21 games.

Tufte finishes his rookie season with nine goals and seven assists.