LAS VEGAS -- For the seventh time in the last nine years, a University of North Dakota hockey alumni has won the Stanley Cup. In fact, this time around, two former North Dakota standouts got to raise hockey's holy grail.
Former UND forwards T.J. Oshie and Shane Gersich, now with the Washington Capitals, hoisted the Cup on Thursday night following Washington's 4-3 win at Vegas in Game 5 of the Stanley Cup Finals. It was the first-ever Cup for the Capitals' franchise.
Oshie and Gersich became the 14th and 15th different UND alums to win the Stanley Cup. Oshie tied for fifth in the playoff scoring race with 21 points (8 goals, 13 assists) in 24 games. Gersich, who signed with Washington following the 2017-18 collegiate season, played in a pair of playoff games (none in the finals).
"It's hard to describe. Besides my wedding day and birth of my two girls, this is the most amazing feeling I've ever had," Oshie told CBC's Scott Oake following the game. "My dad's here in the crowd. He was diagnosed with Alzeheimer's. He doesn't remember a lot of stuff, but you bet your ass he's going to remember this one.
"I've never seen a team come together like we did here. I've been on some really good teams, some really clsoe teams. But I've never seem the commitment from start to finish like we had here. It just feels so great to do it with this great group of guys."
Later, Oshie told NBC Sports Network, "Everyone has a dream of lifting that thing. You can never get prepared for it."
Oshie, a native of Warroad, Minn., starred at North Dakota for three seasons from 2005-06 through 2007-08, amassing 59 goals and 142 points in 129 career games. He was a first team All-American as a junior in 2007-08 and was a two-time selection to the All-WCHA team
Gersich signed with the Capitals in March after UND's season came to an end at the NCHC Frozen Faceoff. He ranked second among Fighting Hawks in goals (13) and tied for third in points (29) in 2017-18.
As a sophomore in 2016-17, Gersich earned National Collegiate Hockey Conference (NCHC) All-NCHC Team Honorable Mention accolades after pacing UND in points (37) and goals (21). He was a member of UND’s national championship team in 2015-16, collecting nine goals and 11 points in 37 games as a freshman. Gersich finished his collegiate career with 43 goals and 77 points in 117 career games.
UND'S STANLEY CUP CHAMPIONS:
|1983-84||Gord Sherven||Edmonton Oilers|
|1985-86||Craig Ludwig||Montreal Canadiens|
|1989-90||Geoff Smith||Edmonton Oilers|
|1990-91||Jay Caufield||Pittsburgh Penguins|
|1991-92||Jay Caufield||Pittsburgh Penguins|
|1995-96||Troy Murray||Colorado Avalanche|
|1998-99||Ed Belfour||Dallas Stars|
|1998-99||Tony Hrkac||Dallas Stars|
|1998-99||Craig Ludwig||Dallas Stars|
|1998-99||Rick Wilson (AC)||Dallas Stars|
|1999-00||Brad Bombardir||New Jersey Devils|
|2005-06||Mike Commodore||Carolina Hurricanes|
|2009-10||Jonathan Toews*||Chicago Blackhawks|
|2011-12||Matt Greene||Los Angeles Kings|
|2012-13||Jonathan Toews||Chicago Blackhawks|
|2013-14||Matt Greene||Los Angeles Kings|
|2014-15||Jonathan Toews||Chicago Blackhawks|
|2016-17||Carter Rowney||Pittsburgh Penguins|
|2017-18||Shane Gersich||Washington Capitals|
|2017-18||T.J. Oshie||Washington Capitals|
* - indicates Conn Smythe Trophy winner as Playoff MVP