Jan. 3, 2013
MINNEAPOLIS – Just days after helping Minnesota reclaim a No. 1 ranking in both national polls and helping the Gophers to their first Mariucci Classic title since 2008-09, junior forward Nick Bjugstad and freshman goaltender Adam Wilcox have been honored with weekly awards from the Western Collegiate Hockey Association.
Bjugstad, who tallied six scoring points in Mariucci Classic victories over Air Force and top-ranked Boston College last weekend, is the Red Baron® WCHA Offensive Player of the Week for January 3. He also earned the weekly award on Oct. 16 for his efforts against Michigan State.
A 6-6, 220-pound junior from Blaine, Minn., Bjugstad scored two goals and set up four others in the two holiday tournament games at Mariucci Arena, had five shots on goal and earned a +3 plus/minus rating as the Golden Gophers improved to 13-3-3 overall and moved into the No. 1 ranking in this week's polls. After earning two assists in a 4-0 triumph over Air Force last Saturday (Dec. 29), he came back with a career-high four points (2g, 2a) in a 8-1 victory over BC on Sunday (Dec. 30) as Minnesota won the Mariucci Classic. He scored the game-opening goal on a power-play at 2:52 of the first period and then had his second of the game at 13:53 to stake UM to a 3-0 lead. For his efforts, Bjugstad was named to the all-tournament team.
A draftee of the National Hockey League's Florida Panthers, Bjugstad ranks second on the team in scoring so far this season, with 10 goals, nine assists and 19 points in 19 games. For his 88-game collegiate career at Minnesota, he has 43 goals, 38 assists and 81 points.
Wilcox, who keyed a stellar defensive effort in wins over Air Force and Boston College that helped the Golden Gophers capture the Mariucci Classic championship and earned him tournament MVP honors last weekend, has been named the Red Baron® WCHA Rookie of the Week for January 3. He also earned the weekly award on Nov. 13 for his efforts at Alaska Anchorage.
A 6-0, 186-pound freshman from South St. Paul, Minn., Wilcox stopped 50 of 51 shots on goal for a .980 save percentage, posted five shutout periods, and held his the Falcons and Eagles to a combined 1-of-7 on the power-play as he backstopped the Golden Gophers to their first Mariucci Classic title since 2008-09. After turning aside all 18 shots in a 4-0 shutout (his third of the season) over Air Force last Saturday (Dec. 29), Wilcox came back with a career-high 32 saves in Minnesota's 8-1 triumph over Boston College, earning him Mariucci Classic MVP and all-tournament team accolades.
A draftee of the NHL's Tampa Bay Lightning, Wilcox sports a 12-2-3 record in nets this season, with a 1.63 goals-against average and .927 save percentage over 1,064:23 of action.
-Pride on Ice-
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Twenty-nine regular-season Gopher games will be televised including all 20 Big Ten contests this season.
Gophers Tabbed B1G Preseason Favorites
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Hockey Day Minnesota is scheduled for Saturday, Jan. 21 with the Maroon & Gold playing a 5 p.m. CT Border Battle matchup at Wisconsin.