CHICAGO (AP) — Dylan Gambrell scored twice, Tariq Hammond had a goal and two assists, and Denver routed Notre Dame 6-1 on Thursday night to advance to the Frozen Four championship.
Top-seeded Denver dominated from the start, using a blend of speed, precision and power to overwhelm the Fighting Irish. Emil Romig and Henrik Borgstrom scored in the first period, and the Pioneers put it away with three more in a 4:11 span in the second.
Denver also made it to the national semifinals last year, falling 4-2 to eventual champion North Dakota in heartbreaking fashion. The Fighting Hawks advanced with two goals in the final 56.8 seconds, and the Pioneers have been on a mission ever since that loss in Florida last year.
Next up is Saturday night's final against conference rival Minnesota Duluth, which edged Harvard 2-1 in the first semi at the United Center. The Pioneers (32-7-4) and Bulldogs split two games in Denver on consecutive nights in December.
Denver is going for its first title since 2005 and the eighth overall for one of college hockey's marquee programs.