Seventh-ranked Minnesota Duluth got two goals in the first period from Anna Klein and two more in the third period from Elizabeth Giguere, but still wound up on the wrong end of a 5-4 overtime loss to No. 1 Wisconsin in WCHA play Sunday afternoon at Amsoil Arena.
The Badgers, who remain undefeated at 8-0, won the game 23 seconds into 3-on-3 OT by forcing a UMD turnover that created a two-on-one breakaway. Senior wing Daryl Watts was then able to maneuver around a block to find sophomore center Casey O’Brien for the tap-in and series sweep.
“I thought the third period was fantastic,” said Bulldogs coach Maura Crowell, focusing on the positives from Saturday’s heartbreaking defeat. “I really like how resilient our group is coming back, fighting back, fighting back, fighting back and pushing it to OT. Taking a point off the No. 1 team in October is encouraging as a coach. I know we’re only going to get better and I’m excited about that.”
Senior center Gabbie Hughes had assists on all four UMD goals, including the two Giguere, a fifth-year senior wing, scored to tie the game twice in the third period after the Badgers took one-goal leads. Giguere’s first goal came 96 seconds after Wisconsin pulled ahead 3-2 and the second found the back of the net with 3:30 to go in regulation, forcing overtime.
Giguere said the key to sticking with the Badgers in the third was “we just kept having fun.”
“We knew we had a good game going,” Giguere said. “We were all over them. We just needed to put some pucks on net and not turn the puck over, like coach said, like we did in the second period. We turned the puck over a lot.
“Just put the puck behind their D and go get it. That’s what we did and we got some good chances and we tied the game.”
The Bulldogs and Badgers went into the third period tied at 2-2 after Klein and Sarah Wozniewicz exchanged goals in the opening two periods.
Klein, the Bulldogs' fifth-year senior wing and captain, put UMD on top 2-0 in the first period via a pair of one-timers at close range off feeds from Hughes. The goals were part of a dominant opening 20 minutes for UMD, who outshot Wisconsin 9-1.
“We had the puck a lot,” Crowell said of the first period. “I liked us offensively that period. That was the story. We had a ton of poise coming out of our D zone. That's something we talked about yesterday — just getting our eyes up, getting our toes up, good speed, putting pucks behind them, hemming them in their D zone so they didn't have that much time in our D zone, which is what we wanted to do. I would have liked to have seen a little more of that in a second, but I think, honestly, those are growing pains.”
The Badgers, who had given up only two goals total in their first seven games and shut out UMD on Friday 3-0, didn’t register their first shot on goal until 11:11 into the game.
Wisconsin turned it on in the second, outshooting the Bulldogs 19-8 while getting two goals from Wozniewicz, a third-line freshman wing, to tie the game. Wozniewicz’s second goal of the game and sixth of the season came unassisted after she forced UMD to turn the puck over in its own zone along the wall.
“We turned the puck over a lot in the neutral zone in the second,” Crowell said. “They’re a good team and they got some momentum and the puck winds up in the back of our net there a couple times.”
UMD was without senior wing Anneke Linser on Sunday, who is expected to miss a few games — Crowell couldn’t put a timetable on it — with an upper body injury. The Bulldogs hit the road next weekend to play at St. Thomas on Saturday and Sunday in WCHA play, before taking three weekends off during Olympic qualifying.
Minnesota Duluth 2-0-2-0—4
Saves — Kennedy Blair, UW, 17; Emma Soderberg, UMD, 26.
Power plays — UW 0-2; UMD 1-2. Penalties — UW 2-4; UMD 2-4.