The University of Wisconsin men’s hockey team (11-18-1, 6-15-1-1 Big Ten) took on the No. 11 Nittany Lions of Pennsylvania State University (19-10-3, 11-8-3) this past weekend at the Kohl Center in the second to last home series of the season.

The first game of the series took place Friday night as the Badgers looked to find their footing after a five game losing streak. The Badgers started the night hot with three goals in the first period from Mike Vorlicky, Josh Ess and Max Zimmer. 

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Penn State was also able to find the net in the first period with a goal from senior Liam Folkes. That would be the only goal the Badgers ceded in the first period — yielding a 3–1 lead heading into the second period.

While the Badgers were not able to score in the second period, the Nittany Lions found the back of the net twice. Heading into the final period, the Badgers and Nittany Lions were all tied up despite the hot start from Wisconsin.

The third period was dominated defensively on both ends, especially from sophomore goalkeeper Daniel Lebedeff, who had 35 saves on the night and 18 in the third period. With just over a minute remaining before overtime would be forced, freshman Dylan Holloway was able to net his fifth goal of the season — ultimately giving the Badgers the 4–3 win and ending their five game losing streak.

The Badgers went into Saturday night’s game feeling good, fresh off of a win over a confident Penn State team. Playing for just their second sweep of the season, the Badgers needed to come out strong like they did on Friday night.

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Penn State slowly built up a 2–0 lead heading towards the end of the second period, following goals from juniors Alex Limoges and Cole Hults. Fortunately, Wisconsin junior Ty Pelton-Byce gave the Badgers some hope following his goal with just 11 seconds left in the second period.

The Badgers went into the final period down 2–1 looking to pull off the series sweep, but their efforts came up short. The Badgers and Nittany Lions traded goals in the third period and the score would be cemented at 3–2 by the end of the contest. 

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The team takes a break from Big Ten play next weekend as they take on the Arizona State University Sun Devils in Madison. This is their last regular season series at the Kohl Center and their second to last regular season series of the season. Game one will take place Friday night at 7:00 p.m., followed by game two on Saturday night at the same time.