|4||Stats | Archived Blog
March 8, 2013
UPDATE: Tickets for next weekend's WCHA first round playoff series will go on sale Monday, March 11 at noon. Visit MyGophersports.com for more info.
BEMIDJI, Minn. - The No. 2 Minnesota men's hockey team locked up home ice for the opening round of the Western Collegiate Hockey Association playoffs with a 4-3 win over Bemidji State on Friday at Sanford Center.
Nick Bjugstad paced the nation's top offense and power play with a pair of extra-strength goals including the eventual game winner to finish the night with 19 goals on the season including 10 while on the advantage.
Minnesota (23-7-5 overall, 15-7-5 WCHA) claimed one-goal leads twice in game - once in the first and again in the second - only to see the home squad rally in both instances. Ben Marshall opened the night with his sixth goal of the season at 5:09 of the first period after being setup by Nate Condon and Seth Helgeson. After Matt Prapavessis evened the game midway through the first on a delayed Minnesota penalty, Bjugstad would reclaim the lead for Minnesota 2:21 into the second period during a Minnesota power-play. Christian Isackson and Erik Haula setup the Gophers' second goal as Haula improved to a team-best 43 points this season.
But the Beavers (6-19-8, 5-15-7) refused to go quietly. Cory Ward evened the score at 2-2 with 1:43 to play in the second period and then gave the home team its first lead of the night 2:30 into the third period as Bemidji State went up 3-2.
Then it was the Gophers' turn to rally.
Justin Holl scored his third goal of the season and second in as many games less than five minutes later at 7:27 when A.J. Michaleson fed the junior for the game-tying score. Bjugstad then added his second power-play goal of the night at 14:54 as Minnesota went on to edge Bemidji State. Nate Schmidt earned an assist on the game winner to snap a five-game point drought for the WCHA's top scoring defenseman while Kyle Rau's secondary assist moved Minnesota to 20-1-1 this season when the sophomore tallies a point.
Minnesota, which outshot the Beavers 28-27 on the night, went 2-for-4 on the power play while the Gophers penalty kill was 2-for-2.
Adam Wilcox improved to 22-6-5 with the win - the second most wins in Division I hockey this year. The freshman made 24 saves while Andrew Walsh fell to 5-12-6 on the season with a 24-save performance.
The Gophers wrap up the 2012-13 regular season tomorrow night against the Beavers. A Minnesota win coupled with a St. Cloud State loss to Wisconsin would give the Gophers a share of the MacNaughton Cup as WCHA regular-season champions. North Dakota is currently tied with Minnesota for second in the league, two points behind the Huskies.
-Pride on Ice-
Gopher Hockey Heads to Las Vegas
Minnesota will play North Dakota in the 2018 U.S. Hockey Hall of Fame Game at the Orleans Arena in Las Vegas on Saturday, Oct. 27, 2018.
Gophers Mourn Mike Pearson
A native of Fort Frances, Ontario, Pearson was a three-year letter winner and a captain for Minnesota.
Pick Your Packs Now on Sale
To order Pick Your Packs visit MyGopherSports.com, call 1-800-U-Gopher or stop by the Mariucci Arena Ticket Office.