Another opponent engaged in target practice on Friday but it was Colorado College that hit the mark when it counted.
The opportunistic Tigers, backed by the solid goaltending of senior Joe Howe and the offensive prowess of a red-hot second line, snapped their four-game winless streak with a 5-3 victory over seventh-ranked University of North Dakota in the opener of their WCHA series at the World Arena.
Howe steered away 44 of 47 UND shots in the triumph, while his defense blocked 17 more in a contest that saw the visitors launch 84 attempts altogether including 20 that just plain missed the net.
Meanwhile, CC's No. 2 forward unit of Alexander Krushelnyski, Scott Winkler and Charlie Taft combined for 11 points at the other end of the ice.
Senior center Winkler completed a huge month of November with a pair of tallies, including the game winner, that came just 87 seconds apart midway through the third period. He earlier set up goals by junior left wing Krushelnyski in the middle stanza and senior right William Rapuzzi during a line change early in the third that turned a 1-1 deadlock into a 3-1 Colorado College lead.
Krushelnyski and sophomore right wing Taft each collected three assists as the No. 18-ranked Tigers defeated North Dakota for the first time in the teams' last five meetings dating back to January 2011. They improved to 8-6-1 overall and 5-2 in the WCHA heading into Saturday's 7:07 p.m. rematch.
Jared Hanson also scored for CC, which struck first in a game for only the fourth time this season when the freshman forward ripped a rising wrist shot from the opposite wing past junior netminder Clarke Saunders and just inside the far post at 7:35 of the opening frame.
Winkler's ninth red lighter of the season, a wrap-around effort at 11:45 of the final frame, created what seemed to be a comfortable 4-1 cushion but a dazzling solo effort by UND's Drake Caggiula cut it to 4-2 just 57 seconds later.
It was the first of two goals for freshman winger Caggiula, who later clicked during a power play and with Saunders on the bench in favor of an extra attacker. Twenty seconds after his first one, however, Winkler's team-leading 10th of the campaign, again from Krushelnyski and Taft, put Colorado College up 5-2.
The four points by Winkler gave him 14 in nine games during November.
North Dakota, which also got a rare goal from defenseman Joe Gleason, dropped to 6-5-1 overall and 3-2-2 in league play.
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