This weekend, the No. 2 University of Wisconsin women’s hockey team (26-4-0, 16-4 WCHA) will take on the Minnesota Duluth Bulldogs (13-13-2, 9-9-2) in what will be their second matchup this season and the Badgers’ final regular season road trip. The Badgers swept the Bulldogs at LaBahn Arena Oct. 13-14.
Wisconsin is coming off of a successful weekend hosting the Minnesota State Mavericks, where they were able to decisively win both games. Two Badgers were named WCHA players of the week by virtue of their performances: Britta Curl, who was awarded WCHA Forward of the Week after scoring twice last weekend and putting up two assists, and Sophie Shirley, who earned WCHA Rookie of the Week thanks to her three goals.
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UW has had a tremendous amount of success on power plays this season. The Badgers have been scoring on 25 percent of their power plays, including two power play goals in their first matchup against Minnesota Duluth and three this past weekend against Minnesota State. The Bulldogs are also strong on the advantage, converting just over 21 percent of their power play opportunities.
On defense, the Badgers have been effective at limiting their opponents’ number of shots per game to just 16. Minnesota Duluth has also been strong defensively having saved over 800 shots on goal this season.
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Minnesota Duluth is coming off of a series split at home against St. Cloud State. The loss hurt the Bulldogs, making it more difficult for them to rise in the WCHA standings where they remain in fourth place.
Going into this weekend’s matchup, the Badgers are ranked second in the nation only behind the University of Minnesota. Minnesota Duluth has been in the conversation among top-ranked teams as the regular season nears an end. The WCHA playoffs begin in early March.
The games take place on Friday and Saturday at AMSOIL Arena in Duluth, Minnesota, with the puck dropping at 3 p.m. both days. Tune into 100.9 FM to listen to the game live and follow live on Twitter @BadgerWHockey.