- Associated Press - Saturday, December 10, 2016

GRAND FORKS, N.D. (AP) - North Dakota continues to put a forgettable November behind it, riding Austin Poganski’s two goals to a 5-1 National Collegiate Hockey Conference win over Western Michigan on Friday.

The Fighting Hawks (9-5-3, 3-3-1-1 NCHC) have won both December games after going 2-3-3 in November for their first losing month since November 2013. They beat Boston College in Madison Square Garden a week ago.

Poganski scored in each of the first two periods as the Hawks took a 5-1 lead after 40 minutes. UND extended its unbeaten streak when leading after two periods to 84 games. It hasn’t lost when taking a lead into the final period since Nov. 1, 2013.

Western Michigan (7-5-3, 3-5-1-1) has lost two of its last three games.

“I thought we had four lines that played the right way,” UND coach Brad Berry said. “The power play and penalty kill was good tonight again.”

UND was 1-for-3 with a man advantage and killed all three WMU power plays.

A flurry of goals midway through the first period left North Dakota holding a 2-1 lead heading into the second period.

Shane Gersich and Colton Poolman scored 27 seconds apart to give UND a 2-0 lead.

Scott Moldenhauer scored 33 seconds after Poolman to cut the deficit in half, but it was the only goal of the night for the Broncos.

“We tightened up a few things defensively. They have some players who can make you look silly if you play loose,” Berry said.

Gersich netted his 12th goal of the season at 12:42, skating down the slot all alone and taking a centering pass from Austin Poganski and beating Collin Olson.

Olson didn’t have a chance to stop Poolman’s first career goal as he was screened by UND players in front of the net.

Poganski upped the lead to 3-1 when he deflected a shot by teammate Christian Wolanin into the net at 7:08 of the second period. Wolanin assisted on two goals.

UND’s Dixon Bowen followed with his first goal since Oct. 22 to chase Olson, who finished with 18 saves.

Ben Blacker come on with 6:24 left in the second period and finished with 11 stops.

Poganski’s net-front presence paid off again with 1:37 left in the period when he deflected a shot by Rhett Gardner between Baker’s legs on the power play.

Cam Johnson made 24 saves as UND improved to 16-1-1 against the Broncos.

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