Stapley ended his collegiate career on a high note Saturday he helped the third-ranked Denver Pioneers to a 5-1 upset win over No. 1 Minnesota State in the NCAA Frozen Four final at Boston’s TD Garden.
An afterthought when the Canadiens drafted him in the seventh round (190th overall) in the 2018 draft, Stapley scored one of five third-period goals as Denver came back from a 1-0 deficit. It was Denver’s ninth NCAA title, tying Michigan for the most championships.
Stapley also scored in the semifinal Thursday when Denver posted a 3-2 overtime win over a Michigan team that featured four of the top five picks in the 2021 entry draft. It was a missed opportunity for the Wolverines, because two of those prospects have signed NHL contracts since being eliminated.