As the Gophers prepare to open the NCAA tournament against Yale this Friday at 1 p.m. CT in Grand Rapids, Mich., we've been doing a little research into the history between these two squads. We discovered the box score from Minnesota's 7-3 win over the Bulldogs on Dec. 27, 2002 (the last time these two programs met) over at CollegeHockeyStats.net, and what we found was pretty amazing.
Five points from Minnesota's top line of Thomas Vanek (2-0--2), Matt Koalska (0-1--1) and Troy Riddle (0-2--2). The game-winning goal (and an assist) from current Penguins defenseman Paul Martin and a shorthanded goal from Vancouver blue liner Keith Ballard. In all, 13 different Gophers with a point.
Jerrid Reinholz picked up his first of two points in the win with a goal just 2:15 into the game, and Minnesota was cruising soon after. The Gophers built a 6-0 lead midway through the battle before the Bulldogs found the net for the first time.
It's also worth noting that the win gave Minnesota its seventh-straight victory over Yale while the Gophers went on to pick up a Dodge Holiday Classic title the next night with a 201 overtime win over No. 6 Boston College.
And of course, we all know how the 2002-03 season ended...