Thoughts from the Gophers' 1-0 victory over Canisius.
Wilcox Gets the Shutout
Freshman goalie Adam Wilcox recorded his first career shutout today. He made 20 saves including some dandies late. With about five minutes remaining, he denied Kyle Gibbons. Gibbons was behind the defense and was trying to poke the puck passed Wilcox. Then, after the Griffins pulled goalie Tony Capobianco, Adam made another set of saves with the Canisius players swarming the net. Wilcox needed to make all 20 saves today because Capobianco turned in a 41-save effort to hold the Gophers to one goal. Wilcox is now 3-0 on the season with a 1.13 GAA and a .934 SV%.
Rau was Ready
As a Sunday crowd was still settling into their seats at Mariucci Arena, Kyle Rau was busy giving the Gophers the lead. Rau scored just twelve seconds into the game. Kyle put the Gophers on the front foot with a nice tip in front of the net, off of a point shot from defenseman Jake Parenteau. Rau was making up for lost time after having to sit out Friday's game to rest an injury. The fastest goal to start a game in Gophers' history was in 1968. Bill Klatt scored after a mere five seconds.
How You Start is How You Finish
Including the exhibition games, the Gophers have now played seven times. Five times, they have had a lead after the first period, and each time they have won. In fact, the Gophers have not trailed in a game all season after taking a lead into the first intermission. In the two games the Gophers have failed to win, including Friday's exhibition vs. the US Under-18 team, Minnesota was trailing after 20 minutes.
Marshall Moves to Forward
Ben Marshall played on the second line tonight with Erik Haula and Zach Budish. Marshall becomes the third Gopher defenseman to play as a forward this season, joining Justin Holl and Jake Parenteau. The Gophers have the luxury of having defensemen that can adjust to a different role throughout the season. Marshall showed ability to adapt during the game, after playing forward at full-strength he played a defensive role on the penalty kill.
Back to the WCHA Grind
Next week, the Gophers will head back into WCHA play, for the first of three-straight weekends. Next week, the Gophers will tangle with the Minnesota State, Mankato Mavericks. The Mavericks stumbled this weekend in their first foray into WCHA play, losing a pair of games to St. Cloud State. Friday's game is at Mariucci and Saturday's game is in Mankato at the Verizon Wireless Center.
-Story by Minnesota Communications Student Intern Josh Brennock