Cleat Geeks

Avalanche Blanked in the State of Hockey

The Colorado Avalanche’s four-game road trip ended on Saturday with a meeting with the rival Minnesota Wild in St. Paul. The Avs last faced the Wild on the first game of the season for both teams, which saw the Avs have 3-0 and 4-1 leads but lose 5-4 in a game that saw Zach Parise pick up a hat trick. After nearly two months, the Avalanche look to avenge that loss on the Wild’s home ice.Semyon+Varlamov+Edmonton+Oilers+v+Colorado+to6HtyuDbAXl

The outing saw goaltender Semyon Varlamov play his best game at net of the season. He stopped 17 Wild shots in the first period alone, while the Avalanche only managed six, and racked up 41 saves total. Unfortunately, Varlamov did let two goals get past him, the first scored by Matt Dumba in the second period, and the second scored by Justin Fontaine early in the third period. Even so, the Avs remained in the game throughout the third period, but costly penalties proved to be an obstacle, and an empty net goal by Jason Pominville clinched the game for the Wild. The Avalanche lost, 3-0.

The Avalanche were blanked for only the second time this season and the first time in regulation. The only other time that the Avs were shutout was at home against the Carolina Hurricanes on October 21; a 1-0 overtime loss. The Avs are 3-2-0 this season against divisional opponents, with both losses coming against the Minnesota Wild. Speaking of the Wild, goaltender Devan Dubnyk left the game in the middle of the second period due to injury, and was replaced by Darcy Kuemper. Dubnyk and Kuemper combined for 20 saves in the game.

Saturday’s game was the first of a home-and-home against the Wild. The two clubs will meet again in Denver on Monday.

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