The University of Minnesota women's hockey team inked their name in the NCAA record book again as they notched their 32nd consecutive victory, which ties the NCAA unbeaten streak. Meanwhile, junior Amanda Kessel became the 24th player in NCAA history to tally her 200th career point.
Freshman Milica McMillen got Minnesota (24-0-0, 18-0-0 WCHA) on the board midway through the first period with a power-play goal. Hannah Brandt won the faceoff in the Minnesota State territory and batted the puck to Kessel. The junior quickly passed to Megan Bozek at the blueline, who cycled it to McMillen at the right faceoff circle. The St. Paul, Minn. native blasted a one-timer under the MSU goaltender's pads to give the Maroon & Gold the 1-0 lead.
After surrendering the lead, the Mavericks (9-14-3, 5-12-3 WCHA) kept the Gophers off the board the remainder of the period despite being outshot 18-11.
The second period started slow for Minnesota with two Gophers receiving penalties within the first two minutes of the period. Senior Noora Raty and a plethora of Gopher skaters stepped up to the challenge and kept MSU off the scoreboard, despite being down two skaters for nearly one minute and 55 seconds.
Raty recorded 26 saves on the night en route to her 98th career win and 35th career shutout. She is now just two wins and four shutouts form matching the respective NCAA career records.
The Gophers quickly turned things around as they netted three goals with two coming from Brandt and one from Bozek.
Brandt's first goal of the period came at 5:04 and was assisted by Menefee and Kessel, which went down as her 200th career point.
With the assist, Kessel, who also assisted on Brandt's other goal in the period, became only the 24th player in NCAA history to reach the 200-point mark. She is also 1-of-6 Gophers to achieve the milestone.
Minnesota would carry their 4-0 lead into the second intermission, but Minnesota was far from being done with one period remaining.
Seven minutes into the period, Bozek tallied her second goal of the game, while sophomore Rachael Bona netted her third goal of the weekend at the 15:45 mark to cap off Minnesota's scoring.
The Gophers take their 32-game winning/unbeaten streak into Madison, Wis. next weekend to face rival Wisconsin. The Badgers, who now share the NCAA unbeaten streak record with Minnesota, will look to snap the Maroon & Gold's streak. Games are slated for Friday and Sunday with both beginning at 2 p.m.