Drew DeRidder enjoys newfound goal support, posts 27-save shutout over Holy Cross
UND scored four times in the span of 4:20 in the opening period to earn a season-opening victory.
GRAND FORKS — Drew DeRidder made 15 starts during his last four months at Michigan State.
During that time, his team never scored four goals for him.
The start of his UND career was a bit different.
UND scored four goals in the span of 4 minutes, 20 seconds in the opening period en route to a 6-0 blowout win over Holy Cross on Friday in Ralph Engelstad Arena.
DeRidder, a fifth-year senior, became the first goaltender since Aaron Dell in 2009 to open his UND career with a shutout. He made 27 saves in all — four in the first, 12 in the second and 11 in the third. He also added an assist for good measure.
"It's nice to have that many goals that early in the game," DeRidder said. "It kind of just sets up the game and I'm able to relax a little bit. The fireworks kind of fire you up, too. I wasn't expecting that, so that was pretty cool."
There were a lot of them.
Freshman Jackson Blake, fifth-year senior Mark Senden, fifth-year senior Gavin Hain and junior Cooper Moore scored to stake the Fighting Hawks to a 4-0 lead in the opening period. Riese Gaber scored a power-play goal in the second and Jake Schmaltz added the final tally on the power play in the third.
The six goals marked DeRidder's most goal support in four years.
"It's very different, but like I said, it's nice to have that kind of cushion," DeRidder said. "I'm able to relax and know I can make a mistake or two and it doesn't affect the outcome of the game."
DeRidder didn't make any mistakes, though.
His best saves came on a breakaway stop of Matt DeBoer in the first and a highlight-reel power-play stop on Devin Phillips in the second. Phillips was open for a back-door chance, but DeRidder got over in time.
"He was outstanding," UND coach Brad Berry said. "He made some huge saves. He looked calm doing it. You can tell that's an experienced goaltender. There were situations there where we kind of left him on an island a little bit. He made some huge saves for us to kind of keep us on track. I really thought he played a solid game. He looked really calm and composed in there."
Here's some other coverage of Friday's UND-Holy Cross game...
A lot of players got on the scoresheet for UND.
Defenseman Chris Jandric tallied three assists. Louis Jamernik V set up a pair of goals with feeds to the top of the crease. Senden, Moore and Blake also added an assist for two-point games.
"It was unreal," Blake said of playing his first official game at UND. "I still have chills thinking about it. You grow up, come to games up here and your dream is just to actually be on the ice and it was just an awesome experience."
In the past, the Fighting Hawks have used the line of Hain, Senden and Jamernik V as a shutdown line, assigned to go against opponents' best units. On Friday, they turned into the scoring line. They combined for two goals and five points.
"Obviously, we've got the chemistry from last year. . . the last couple years," Hain said. "We have it in our bag so we can be a good two-way line. I think that's what we're trying to do. We're going to try to get some goals and obviously shut down when we need to."
Berry wasn't happy with every part of the game, though.
For a little over a 20-minute stretch in the second period and the start of the third, Holy Cross outshot UND 18-5. But DeRidder, who posted a .918 save percentage on a last-place Michigan State team a season ago, didn't allow the Crusaders to get anything in the net.
"It was awesome," DeRidder said of his first regular-season game at The Ralph. "It's a beautiful place to play. I've been skating here for the last couple of months now. It's a beautiful building but it's even better to see all the people in there. It was just an awesome experience."
Notes: UND played without injured forward Dane Montgomery and injured defenseman Luke Bast. UND's three healthy scratches were sophomore Nick Portz, sophomore Jackson Kunz and senior Carson Albrecht. It marked the first time in Portz's college career that he missed a game. He was one of three players to suit up in every game last season. The others were Judd Caulfield and Schmaltz.