Denver defenseman Ian Mitchell was frustrated.

The puck had just hopped over his stick in the offensive zone and trickled right to UND's Jasper Weatherby, who buried an empty-netter to secure a 3-1 Fighting Hawks victory Saturday and series sweep in Ralph Engelstad Arena.

So, Mitchell took a baseball swing at the goal post and purposely shattered his stick.

Surely, equipment managers around the country cringed.

College hockey's equipment managers have been encouraging players to conserve their stick supply in recent weeks, because CCM and Bauer factories in China have been either closed or not operating at full capacity because of the deadly coronavirus.

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UND head coach Brad Berry and equipment manager Dan Johansson have addressed it with the team.

"Dan Johansson has talked to me about that," Berry said. "I wasn't really aware of that situation. Obviously, the manufacturing plants there are shut down. Hopefully, they'll open up here soon, but we've talked about it as a group, trying to conserve, as best we can, the guys who are getting down on their supply.

"I think we're good right now, but when you're going out there and doing skill work, maybe use somebody else's stick who has more inventory or use an older stick. I think we've got to be cognizant of that, because it's something very personalized to each player."

Johansson said CCM has found workarounds to get players sticks with the same curve that they use.

"Matt Cermak and his team did a fantastic job making sure our guys are covered during this period of the stick shortage," said Johansson, who is expecting the CCM factories to be back running at full capacity soon.

Berry said UND doesn't have anyone on the team who is breaking an inordinate number of sticks this season.

"I don't think we have any Andrew Kozeks here right now," Berry said, referring to UND's ex-forward who frequently snapped sticks with his heavy shot. "Our guys are aware of it. Hopefully, those plants get opened up. It's not only us. It's the rest of college hockey who has that problem, too."

UND forward Mark Senden said Johansson has explained the situation to the players.

"We've had that conversation with Dan," Senden said. "He's brought it up to everyone who is running low on sticks, trying to savor some sticks. We're working with CCM. I think we'll do fine on the amount of sticks we'll have."

And Berry said he doesn't want to see anyone breaking sticks out of frustration.

"There are going to be fines levied for that," Berry joked. "No, I think guys have respect for that and you won't see it."