Observations from Minnesota's 2-0 win over North Dakota

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Patterson Perfect Again
Minnesota goaltender Kent Patterson made 24 saves for his fifth shutout of the season, tying Robb Stauber's Gopher record set in 1987-88. Stauber won the Hobey Baker Award that season. Patterson, who also was the HCA Commissioners National Goaltender of the Month in October, became the third recorded goaltender in school history to post four shutouts in the same month, as well. Tonight marked Minnesota's first shutout against North Dakota since Oct. 23, 2004 (Kellen Briggs in a 6-0 win) and was the first UM shutout at Mariucci Arena against UND since Dec.12, 1993 (Jeff Moen in a 3-0 win). Last year, no goaltender in the nation had more than six blankings all season.

Fourth Line Effort Pays Off
The Gophers' fourth line of Tom Serratore, Travis Boyd, and Nick Larson often gives Minnesota momentum by hemming opponents in their own end, but on Friday, the trio gave the Gophers more. The lined tacked on the insurance goal that helped the team earn its eighth win of the year. Serratore scored five-hole on Aaron Dell off a pass from Larson (second assist to Boyd) to make it 2-0 with under nine minutes remaining.

Mariucci May Need a Bigger Penalty Box, More Seats
In front of a rocking crowd of 10,176, the largest at Mariucci Arena this season, Minnesota and North Dakota combined for 65 penalty minutes. At one point late the second period, UND had five players in the box and the Gophers had four. UM and Minnesota-Duluth racked up 72 PIM on Oct. 14 at Amsoil Arena, the most in a Gopher game this year.

Killing It
With 41 penalty minutes on the night, the Gophers were forced to kill seven penalties--and they did. The most challenging kill of the night started 30 seconds into the second period after Seth Ambroz took a contact-to-the-head major. That kill gave Minnesota enough momentum to take a 1-0 lead into the third period. Keeping opponents off the board was a struggle last year, but Minnesota has killed 42 of its 47 penalties (89.4 percent) to begin 2011-12.

Looking to Break out the Brooms
Tomorrow night, the Gophers will look for their first regular season sweep of North Dakota since Nov. 8 and 9, 1996. Minnesota swept UND at home on March 8 and 9, 2002 in the first round of the WCHA playoffs. The last Gopher sweep of UND overall came on Dec. 9 and 10, 2005 in Grand Forks. UM took three of four points in from its biggest rival the last time UND visited on Jan. 15 and 16, 2010. Minnesota won the second game 5-1 after a 3-3 tie in the first game.

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