The No. 1 ranked Wisconsin women’s hockey team (25-2-1, 15-2-1 WCHA) will bring a four-game win streak into this weekend’s match up with the Minnesota State Mavericks (10-14-5, 3-12-3), after picking up consecutive sweeps in Madison at LaBahn Arena.
Heading into the series, the Badgers hold a very decisive 88-2-3 all time edge against the Mavericks, including an ongoing 27-game win streak. The Badgers will look to continue this trend of domination in their upcoming series in order to stay atop both conference and national rankings.
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Offensively, Wisconsin has been a juggernaut so far this season. They lead the conference in just about every offensive category as a team — such as scoring offense, power play percentage and goal differential. The Badgers’ offense has been the driving force behind their relentlessly impressive regular season and it may just be what carries them deep into the postseason.
In addition to this, the Badgers own the top three individual scoring leaders in the conference with forwards Daryl Watts, Sophie Shirley and Abby Roque totaling 64, 52 and 48 points so far this season, respectively. Comparatively, the Mavericks rank towards the bottom of the conference in most offensive categories, lacking the offensive firepower that Wisconsin possesses.
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Minnesota State currently averages just two goals per game, while the Badgers are averaging an impressive 5 per game. The Mavericks are one of the few teams in the Western Collegiate Hockey Association that give up more goals on average than they score, as their defense allows 2.9 goals per game.
When it comes to goaltending, the net has been split between sophomore Abigail Levy and freshman Calla Frank for the Mavericks. Levy has a 91% save rate while Frank is averaging a comparative 90% — both of which are neck and neck with Kristen Campbell’s 91% save rate.
The Badgers must prepare to see either player in net in the upcoming series, a factor that makes playing Minnesota State a bit tougher.
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With only three conference series remaining before the WCHA tournament, the Badgers must stay focused on each opponent down the stretch. Doing so will put them in a favorable position to stay at No. 1 in the rankings heading into the postseason.