Top Ranked Gopher Women Sweep Ohio State
COLUMBUS, Ohio – The No. 1 Minnesota women's hockey team breezed to an 11-2 victory and road series sweep over Ohio State at OSU Ice Rink Saturday afternoon. The Golden Gophers outscored the Buckeyes, 18-4, in the series after a 7-2 win in game one Friday.
Hannah Brandt led the Gophers with six points on three goals and three assists. She and linemates Dani Cameranesi (two goals, three asssists) and Sarah Potomak (four assists) combined for 15 points in the win. Fifteen Gophers had at least one point, and eight recorded multi-point games.
"It was just an awesome effort right from the drop of the puck here tonight," head coach Brad Frost said. "We wanted to prove that we were better than what we played yesterday, particularly in that first period, and I thought right from the get-go tonight our players had great jump, applied a lot of pressure and were able to get that lead early."
Minnesota (6-0-0, 4-0-0 WCHA) took a 3-1 lead into the first intermission before erupting for six goals in the second period. The Gophers have scored 23 second-period goals so far this season, compared to 10 goals each in the first and third periods.
"The second period has been tremendous for us this year and that was the case again tonight. It was great to see Caitlin Reilly get her first couple goals as a Gopher, and just all-around good balance up and down our line-up."
In addition to Reilly scoring her first two goals in Maroon & Gold, several players had notable performances against the Buckeyes. Brandt scored her second hat trick of the season, including her 99th career goal. Her eight-point series this weekend moved her up in the Gopher all-time ranks; she now ranks second in career assists (137), third in career points (236), and fourth in career goals (99).
Potomak recorded eight assists in the series with back-to-back four-assist efforts. Anna Barlow recorded an assist for her first career point as a Gopher on Saturday, and Kate Schipper (1g-1a), Cara Piazza (2a), Brook Garzone (1g-1a),Kelly Pannek (1g-1a) also had multiple points in the 11-2 win.
Ohio State (2-4-0, 0-4-0 WCHA) received goals from Claudia Kepler and Julianna Iafello. Goaltender Alex LaMere made 26 saves on 33 shots faced in 33:44 of action, falling to 1-2-0 on the year. Selena Hunter made three saves on five shots, and Stacy Danczak made nine saves on 11 shots.
The Gophers outshot the Buckeyes, 49-20, and Amanda Leveille earned her fourth win of the season. She made 10 saves on 11 shots before Sidney Peters entered the game in the third period and made eight saves on nine shots.
"I'm really happy with the win and the sweep," Frost said. "I'm excited for us to get home and face Minnesota Duluth next week."
Minnesota returns to Ridder Arena to host Minnesota Duluth next weekend. The Gophers and Bulldogs face off at 6 p.m. CT Friday, Oct. 23 and 4 p.m. CT Saturday, Oct. 24.