MINNEAPOLIS – The Gopher Hockey team produced their most offense in three years with a 9-4 victory to open the border rivalry Big Ten series against Wisconsin at 3M Arena at Mariucci on Friday night.
Minnesota (10-10-4, 7-5-3-0 Big Ten) opened up a three-goal lead in the first period, but a combined nine goals in the third including six for the Gophers pushed the home team past Wisconsin (8-11-4, 4-5-4-1 Big Ten). The Maroon & Gold last scored nine goals against the same Badger team: a 9-2 win in Madison on January 23, 2016.
Jack Sadek wristed in his third of the season to get the scoring started for the Maroon & Gold at 7:20 of the first, catching an assist from Sammy Walker and Brent Gates Jr. on the play. Tyler Sheehy maintained the momentum for Minnesota with an unassisted, short-handed goal at 10:40, ripping a shot from the top of the circle after intercepting a Wisconsin pass at center ice. Rem Pitlick’s one-time shot on the power play put Minnesota up by three and chased Badger starter Jack Berry from the net at 16:49. He made six saves. Sheehy and Tommy Novak each tallied an assist on the goal.
In a quiet second period for both teams, Wisconsin trimmed the deficit by one. Mick Messner broke up the shutout at 14:04 of the period, assisted by Jarod Zirbel and Max Zimmer. The Badgers would inch closer yet early in the third when Jack Gorniak found the back of the net at 4:01, but Ryan Norman had a quick answer for Minnesota. After Ryan Zuhlsdorf rang a shot off the pipe, Norman backhanded in the rebound at 5:56. Clayton Phillips also added an assist on the play.
The Gophers regained their three-goal advantage at 8:50 of the third when Brannon McManus got a lucky bounce off the skate of a defender for his tenth goal of the season, a second unassisted score for Minnesota on the night. McManus now has a five-game point streak, the best in his career, and goals in 4-of-5 games.
The high-scoring third period continued as Wisconsin pulled within 5-4 with back-to-back goals from Brock Caulfield at 10:43 and Seamus Malone at 12:28, but Minnesota responded with three goals in 1:14. Tommy Novak scored on the power play at 15:02, Sammy Walker netted an even-strength goal at 16:02, which also another Badger penalty, and Gates buried a rebound with the man advantage to extend the lead to 8-4. Walker scored his second of the night at 18:50 to cap off the scoring.
Mat Robson made 42 saves for the Gophers in the victory. Berry and Daniel Lebedeff combined for 19 stops on the night for the Badgers.
Minnesota finished 3-for-4 on the power play, while holding Wisconsin to a 0-for-2 night with the man advantage.
COLUMBUS, Ohio – Emily Oden, Grace Zumwinkle, and Alex Woken each scored twice to lead the No. 2 Golden Gopher women’s hockey team to a 7-2 win over No. 7 Ohio State at OSU Ice Rink on Friday night.
Minnesota (23-3-1, 13-3-1-0 WCHA) received multiple points from seven players in the win. Along with multi-goal efforts from Oden (2g-2a), Zumwinkle (2g-1a), and Woken (2g), Nicole Schammel had two points (1g-1a), including her 100th collegiate point, and Kelly Pannek, Taylor Williamson, and Catie Skaja each recorded a pair of assists as well.
Alex Gulstene made 19 saves on 21 shots faced for the Maroon & Gold over the opening 57:25 before Emma May entered the game’s final 2:35. The Gophers outshot the Buckeyes, 36-21.
Ohio State (15-10-0, 9-8-0-0 WCHA) received goals from Madison Field and Jincy Dunne, and three goaltenders saw action for the Buckeyes. Andrea Braendli allowed three goals on nine shots faced in the game’s opening 8:13 before Lynsey Wallace made 17 saves on 21 shots faced over the next 31:47. Zeglen played the third period in net for the Buckeyes and made six saves.
The Gophers jumped out to a 3-0 lead in the game’s opening nine minutes, getting on the board with a power-play goal from Zumwinkle before Oden and Woken each scored their first of two goals in the game.
Schammel extended Minnesota’s lead to four with a power-play goal, marking her 100th collegiate point, before the end of the first period and the Gophers took a 4-0 lead into the first intermission.
The second period saw the teams exchange goals before Oden extended Minnesota’s lead to five with her second tally of the game. Field put the Buckeyes on the board just 1:10 into the middle frame, and Zumwinkle scored her team-leading 20th goal of the season midway through the period. OSU responded with a goal by Dunne, but Woken got the goal back for Minnesota, making it 6-2 with four minutes to play in the middle frame.
Oden netted her second of the game when she tipped a shot by Olivia Knowles past OSU’s Wallace, and the Maroon & Gold held a five-goal lead after two periods of play, 7-2. The teams played a scoreless third period, and the Gophers took game one of the series.
Minnesota was two-for-four on the power play while going five-for-five on the penalty kill. The Gophers’ penalty kill is now 16-for-18 in the team’s last five games.
With two points in the win, Schammel’s career total now stands at 101 points on 44 goals and 57 assists, including 22 points (11g-11a) during her freshman season at Minnesota State.
The Gophers and Buckeyes face off in game two of this weekend’s series at 2:07 p.m. CT Saturday.