Independent Student Newspaper Since 1969

The Badger Herald

Independent Student Newspaper Since 1969

The Badger Herald

Independent Student Newspaper Since 1969

The Badger Herald


Men’s Hockey: Red-hot Badgers down top-ranked Minnesota in shocking road sweep

Wisconsin surges up national rankings with pair of victories over juggernaut
Ahmad Hamid
Badger Men’s Hockey vs Minnesota Duluth

The University of Wisconsin men’s hockey team accomplished something that only four other teams in UW history have — they have swept the Minnesota Golden Gophers at Mariucci Arena.

The No. 14 Badgers (7-1-0, 2-0-0 Big Ten) won by scores of 5–2 and 3–2 over the then-No.1  Golden Gophers (3-3-0, 0-2-0 Big Ten) to continue their hot start.

With the wins, they moved into the top five in the United States College Hockey Online poll that was released on Monday. Here is how it all went down.


Game 1: Wisconsin 5, Minnesota 2

The beginning of the game was not at all indicative of how the weekend would go for the Badgers. But, for those watching, there was probably a pretty big sense of “here we go again.” Having been outscored 26–5 over the last four meetings at Mariucci, this has been a nightmare trip for UW the last couple years. It was a nightmare start this weekend.

A lost faceoff, a failed clearance and weird deflection later, and Minnesota was in front 1–0 just 15 seconds into the contest.

But Wisconsin was able to regroup and calm down. The Badgers did not allow an early goal snowball the way it had in the past. Carl Fish took a hooking penalty and the Badgers got an early power play and a chance to respond. Respond they did.

Mathieu De St. Phalle scored the first of two goals in the opening game to tie the score at one, cleaning up some loose change out front after a shot partially fanned on from the point.

Just over halfway through the period, UW would grab their first lead of the weekend on a seeing-eye shot from the point from former Minnesota commit Cruz Lucius. The Badgers would take that 2–1 lead into the intermission.

In the second, Charlie Strobel, whose dad played for UW, tied things up for Minnesota with his first collegiate goal. In the late stages, however, Jack Horbach and Sawyer Scholl combined to make a great play to send Carson Bantle in alone on a breakaway. He buried it and gave UW the lead again 3–2.

The third period began with a quick goal by the Badgers. Ben Dexheimer circled the Minnesota goal and timed a centering pass perfectly to De St. Phalle, who shot it before Minnesota goalie Justen Close knew what happened. Dexheimer had three assists on the night for UW.

Lucius would add an empty-net goal for Wisconsin later for his second of the night.

Wisconsin goalie Kyle McClellan was sharp with 22 saves.

Men’s Hockey: Wisconsin continues hot start, picks up sweep over No. 17 Michigan Tech

Game 2: Wisconsin 4, Minnesota 2

The second game started out much tighter than the first one did, at least until Mason Nevers took a hooking penalty five minutes in. That’s where things all started to unravel.

The Badgers started the power play extremely loose, allowing two shorthanded chances that McClellan was able to keep out. With the crowd starting to get into it, the Badgers would score on the counterattack with Simon Tassy’s one-timer. UW would lead 1–0 at the end of one.

The Gophers tied it quickly in the second period, thanks to Bryce Brodzinski. But, again, the Badgers would have a response. William Whitelaw picked up his first collegiate goal to give UW the lead again after 40.

Early in the third, Minnesota again had a response. Minnesota Wild draft pick Jimmy Clark tied the score again on a snipe past McClellan.

Minnesota played much better in the game on Saturday and that showed in the third period. UW had to hang on for dear life and wait for an opening.

They got one and they capitalized. With under three minutes to play, a funky play off a shot from Quinn Finley saw the puck settle right in the slot just in front of Close. When he went for the poke check, Tassy got there first and sent it right through his legs to give UW a lead they would not relinquish.

McClellan made 29 saves in game two to backstop the Badgers to the sweep.

Quick Hitters

  • The Badgers were ranked No. 5 in the latest USCHO poll that came out Monday. The ranking sets up the first top-5 matchup at the Kohl Center since 2010 when No. 4 Michigan comes to town next week.
  • Wisconsin is the only school with both the men’s and women’s hockey team ranked in the top-5.
  • Charlie Stramel and Owen Lindmark missed their second consecutive series this week against Minnesota. Owen Mehlenbacher and Tyson Dyck have gotten the nod in their absence. Neither recorded a point this weekend.

Stars of the Weekend

  1. Simon Tassy. Tassy’s two-goal, one-assist performance, including the game-winner with 2:31 to play, rescued the Badgers in a game they were outplayed in.
  2. Mathieu De St. Phalle. The Badgers’ best goal scorer this year delivered again in game one, with two goals and an assist in the 5-2 win.
  3. Kyle McClellan. A couple of leaky ones got through this weekend, but McClellan made timely save after timely save all weekend long. He stopped 51 of the 55 shots he saw this weekend.

Up Next

No. 5 Wisconsin finally returns home to take on No. 4 Michigan as Big Ten play rolls on. Puck drop is at 7 p.m. Friday and 6 p.m. Saturday. Both games will be available to be streamed on Big Ten Plus.

Leave a Comment
Donate to The Badger Herald

Your donation will support the student journalists of University of Wisconsin-Madison. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment and cover our annual website hosting costs.

More to Discover
Donate to The Badger Herald

Comments (0)

All The Badger Herald Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *