Sophomore Nick Bjugstad scored his team-leading 20th goal of the season for Minnesota last Friday night against Colorado College.
The 6-foot-5, 211-pound center, is the first Gopher to score 20 goals since Ryan Stoa registered 24 goals in 36 games during the 2008-09 season.
Nick Bjugstad is the first Gopher to score 20 goals since Ryan Stoa tallied 24 during the 2008-09 season.
While Gopher fans and those who have followed Bjugstad's career may not be surprised to see him hit the 20-goal mark, the Blaine, Minn., readily admits that he has exceeded his own expectations.
"I did not really expect to score 20 goals at the beginning of the season," said Bjugstad, who is second in the nation with 20 goals. "I was pretty excited when I got 10 goals, so it is cool to get 20. I wanted to come in this year and do well as a team and do well individually. There are a lot of good goalscorers on the team, so I did not really come in with too high of expectations."
The goal was Bjugstad's team-leading 32nd point this year. He is the first Gopher to record 30 or more points in one season since 2008-09 when four players accomplished the feat. That year Stoa lead Minnesota with had 46 points (24g-22a) in 36 games. He was followed by Jordan Schroeder (45 points), Jay Barriball (34 points) and Cade Fairchild (33 points).
Bjugstad, who had eight goals and 12 assists in 29 games as a freshman, has 52 points (28g-24a) in 54 career games.
"I have learned a lot since my first year," said Bjugstad, who has at least one goal in 14 of 25 games this season. "I learned a lot from the coaching staff and just from playing games. The pace was a lot different than I was used to from high school. I am feeling more confident as well and that is the main deal with all of this."