Wilcox, Power Play Carry Gophers to 4-0 Win Over Seawolves
Nov. 10, 2012
ANCHORAGE, Alaska. - Behind Adam Wilcox's second shutout of the year and four power-play goals - two from Kyle Rau - the No. 2 Minnesota men's hockey team opened this weekend's Western Collegiate Hockey series with a 4-0 win over Alaska Anchorage.
Minnesota (6-2-0 overall, 3-2-0 WCHA) was the dominant team on Friday night and held advantages in every offensive category. Most notably, the Gophers were 4-for-6 while on the advantage and opened the night by scoring on their first four power-play opportunities. Minnesota has now tallied eight power-play goals in its last three games after recording three in the team's first five games.
Rau gave Minnesota the early lead when he scored just five seconds into the game's first penalty - his third of the year came through a scrum off the faceoff after being set up by Haula at 4:16. Bjugstad would add to the lead at 17:56 of the first period with his team-high fifth of the year. This time the lamp lighter was set up by Schmidt as Minnesota held an 8-2 advantage on shots in the period and went on to outshoot the Seawolves 31-14 in the game.
The Gophers added another pair of goals during the second period with Rau netting his second of the night at 7:09 after being set up by Schmidt and Haula - the second point of the night for each. Ben Marshall stretched the lead to four and closed out the night's scoring with his third goal of the season at 13:35. Marshall, who moved back to his natural position on the blue line on Friday night, was set up by Nate Condon and Travis Boyd on the goal. In addition to setting up Minnesota's final goal of the night, Boyd would lead the Gophers in the faceoff circle - winning 10-of-15 - while Minnesota won 34-of-59.
Wilcox improved to 5-1-0 in his rookie campaign with a 14-save performance on Friday night. The shutout over the Seawolves marked Wilcox's first WCHA shutout after the freshman goaltender previously earned the clean slate in Minnesota's 1-0 win over Canisius on Oct. 28. Chris Kamal took the loss for Alaska Anchorage with 27 saves - falling to 1-3-0 on the season.
Minnesota concludes this weekend's series against Alaska Anchorage (2-3-2, 0-2-1) tomorrow night at Sullivan Arena. Game time is set for 10 p.m. local time.
-Pride on Ice-