So far so good on this road trip. Of course that was only one game, but the Gophers came back in a furious way to defeat the Ohio State Buckeyes on Friday Night. The win puts the Gophers record at 17-6-1 and keeps their 2011 unbeaten streak in tact.
Ohio State came out firing and got the games first goal just :21 into the game. Melissa Feste scored to give the Buckeyes the early lead. Both teams were firing at the respective goaltenders almost at will. The period finished with 17 shots for each team. Lisa Steffes had a great first period and seemed poised to back up her WCHA Rookie of the Week performance she had last week.
The Gophers tied the game late in the second period when Jen Schoullis found Amanda Kessel in front of the net and Kessel shelfed it over Steffes. It was Kessel’s ninth of the season. The goal gave the No. 5 Gophers hope that they could beat Steffes, eho was rock solid all game. The Gophers added on another 16 shots in the second, but could only manage the one goal.
The third period was a wild one. The line led by Natalie Spooner struck again early in the period. Ally Tarr got credit for the goal and Spooner got the lone assist. Minnesota waited till about halfway through the third period and then it was an offensive explosion. Sarah Erickson started things off with her 12th goal on a nice cross ice pass from Kessel. A little over two minutes later it was Megan Bozek scoring her fifth goal of the season with the lone assist to Bethany Brausen. The goal gave the Gophers the lead for the first time in the game and it would end up being the game winner. Twenty seconds later it was Anne Schelper getting her fifth of the season as she saw an offensive opportunity and was fed nicely by Kessel.
The Gophers finished with 43 shots while Ohio State put 35 shots on Noora Raty. Raty finished with 33 saves while Steffes had 39 in the loss. Neither team scored on the power play. Minnesota went 0 for 5 while the Buckeyes went 0 for 6. Natalie Spooner had two points in the game. It was the 12th time Spooner had a multi-point game this season out of the 18 games she has played.
In other WCHA action:
#1 Wisconsin beat Minnesota Duluth 4-1 and dropped UMD even further in the standings. UMD was second in the WCHA last weekend and now they are fourth, tied with Bemidji State.
North Dakota had no problem with St. Cloud State. The Sioux shut out the Huskies 5-0 in Grand Forks.
Bemidji State shut out Minnesota State 2-0 in an early afternoon game yesterday. The Beavers are tied for fourth now in the WCHA.
Minnesota plays Ohio State this afternoon at 3 p.m.