Men’s Hockey: Minnesota Series Preview

The Matchup: No. 12 Wisconsin at No. 1 Minnesota

When: Friday, Nov. 29, 4 p.m. and Saturday, Nov. 30, 5 p.m.

Where: Minneapolis, Minn. – Mariucci Arena (10,000)

Ice Sheet: 200' x 100’

TV: Friday: ESPNU; Saturday: Fox Sports Wisconsin

Radio: Friday: WIBA-AM 1310; Saturday: WTSO-AM 1070

All-Time Series: Minnesota leads 157-88-21 (88-28-8 in Minneapolis)

About the Gophers

 

Record: 9-2-1

Head Coach: Don Lucia, 15th season (353-184-60)

Notable:  Minnesota senior co-captain Nate Condon hails from Wausau, Wis. He is the only member on the Gophers’ roster with roots in the Badgers state.

 

Statistics

Points: Sam Warning – 19 points (Five goals, 14 assists)

Goals: Hudson Fasching - 6 goals

Assists: Warning- 14 assists

Save Pct:  Adam Wilcox - .924

Goals Against Average:  Wilcox - 2.24 GAA

 

About Wisconsin

Record: 4-3-1

Head Coach: Mike Eaves, 12th season (235-170-52)

Notable: Wisconsin is 15-24-7 against Minnesota under head coach Mike Eaves.

 

Statistics

Points: Michael Mersch –9 points (five goals, four assists)

Goals:  Mersch - 5 goals

Assists: Mark Zengerle – 7 assists

Save Pct:  Landon Peterson - .867

Goals Against Average: Peterson – 3.69 GAA

Quick analysis: Mariucci Arena is not an easy place to start a winning streak and this Gophers squad isn’t going to provide a friendly welcome to Big Ten play.

This weekend will mark the seventh and eighth consecutive games against ranked opponents for the Badgers.

Adding fuel to the fire is the fact that the Gophers just dropped a game to in-state rival Minnesota-Duluth.  Minnesota has no excuse to come out fired up and ready to play, a scary proposition for the Badgers considering the amount of talent the Gophers’ roster.

Making matters even more difficult is the fact Wisconsin has not really been afforded the chance to get into much of a rhythm this season. The Badgers haven’t played on back-to-back weekends since October.

On the bright side, UW played some pretty solid hockey during its most recent road trip to Miami (OH) earning a split against a quality squad.

The Badgers are capable of beating Minnesota, however it will take one of their best collective efforts of the year to do so.

Prediction: Gophers sweep Friday: 5-2; Saturday: 4-2

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