Ice Insider: Fighting Hawks fighting with backs against the wall

With only six series remaining, UND hockey is starting to feel the pressure of getting back into the NCAA tournament.

GRAND FORKS, ND -- UND hockey has officially reached crunch time sitting fifth in the NCHC, with half a dozen series left on the schedule.

This crucial close will feature match-ups with the top four teams in the NCHC, beginning at home against No. 1 St. Cloud State.

"There's some pressure where we are at with the PairWise, we haven't really done ourselves any favors that way and we know how important this next stretch is," Junior Colton Poolman said. "These next about a month or so is kinda, it will determine a lot as March and April go, if that is what our goals are which is what they are this is kinda our season in a sense."

The Fighting Hawks have started to see more attention to detail in practice, as the pressure mounts down the stretch.

"Practices, just our attention to detail has upped, I think goal scoring hasn't been the easiest for us this year, so I think it's little details, like stopping at the net, finishing out the rebound stuff like that has definitely fired up since our backs have been against the wall," Senior Captain Rhett Gardner added. "I think we've done a really good job, coming to the rink everyday with a good work ethic, haven't always got the result we wanted on weekends, but I think it's been good for our group to come in every Monday and start the work week the same way."

UND will have the Ralph on its side this weekend against the Huskies with a 35-18-7 record against St. Cloud State at home.