MADISON, Wis. - Led by junior Carolyne Prevost's (Sarnia, Ontario) hat trick, the No. 5 Wisconsin women's hockey team (3-0-0, 1-0-0 WCHA) defeated the Bemidji State Beavers, 7-1, in front of 1,923 fans at the Kohl Center on Friday night.
After trailing 1-0 at the first intermission, the Badgers scored seven unanswered goals to skate away with their third consecutive win. Ten different Badgers recorded points, led by Prevost's three. Freshman Brittany Ammerman (River Vale, N.J.) added two goals, while senior Meghan Duggan (Danvers, Mass.) and junior Brooke Ammerman (River Vale, N.J.) each tallied two assists.
Freshman goaltender Alex Rigsby (Delafield, Wis.) made 10 saves in her second collegiate start, improving to 2-0-0 on the season. Meanwhile, Zuzana Tomcikova (1-1-0) finished with 29 saves for Bemidji State.
"Part of the process, especially in early October through around Thanksgiving, is about being in situations and learning how you're going to react," head coach Mark Johnson said. "Tonight was one of those situations, and I thought we reacted very well."
Although the Badgers outshot the Beavers, 36-11, Bemidji State (1-2-0, 0-1-0 WCHA) struck first and took an early 1-0 lead at the 11:21 mark of the first period. Montana Vichorek knocked the puck off the boards to Erin Cody on the left side of the goal. Cody then found Annie Bauerfeld, who solved Rigsby on a one-timer from just outside the crease and gave BSU the 1-0 advantage with a power play goal.
"The last 50 minutes were good," Johnson said. "We knew what Bemidji was going to bring to the table, but we seemed to finally respond once they scored a goal. From that point on, it was pretty good. A lot of players have to learn, and there's no better way to learn than to go through a period of time where you're struggling. You get yourself down a goal and have to respond to that. What I saw after the Bemidji goal was a lot of good things."
The Badgers responded with seven unanswered goals, including a four-goal second period.
Junior Hilary Knight (Sun Valley, Idaho) put the Badgers on the board with 14:49 left in the period. Fellow junior Brittany Haverstock (Hammons Plains, Nova Scotia) intercepted an attempted clear by the Beavers. From the Badgers' left faceoff circle, Haverstock sent the puck to Knight, who beat Tomcikova from the right faceoff circle to tally the equalizer.
Just over four minute later, senior Geena Prough (Farmington, Mich.) passed the puck to Prevost, who five-holed it into the back of the net to give the Cardinal and White the 2-1 lead on a shorthanded goal. The tally marked Prevost's second game-winning goal of the season.
At the 15:07 mark, with the man advantage, Prevost recorded her second-straight goal on assists from Brooke Ammerman and Duggan.
The duo of Brittany Ammerman and sophomore Brianna Decker (Dousman, Wis.) gave UW a 4-1 advantage heading into the second intermission. Decker took a shot from inside the left side of the crease that was saved by Tomcikova, and Ammerman capitalized on the rebound by stuffing the puck into the net from the right side of the crease with 2:55 left in the second period.
The Badgers sealed the 7-1 victory with three more goals in the final period.
At the 5:47 mark, Knight tipped the puck to senior Kelly Nash (Bonita, Calif.). Nash skated it up the boards and sent an angled pass to junior Mallory Deluce (London, Ontario), who sent the puck past Tomcikova to give the Badgers the 5-1 lead.
The Ammerman sisters teamed up for Wisconsin's sixth goal. Brooke Ammerman intercepted the puck from the Bemidji State defense and centered it to younger sister Brittany Ammerman, who flipped the puck high and knocked it past Tomcikova at the 18:04 mark.
Prevost sealed her hat trick with the Badgers' final goal on a quick move and a backhanded shot with 50 seconds left in the contest. Duggan was credited with the assist. Prevost's goal not only completed her second career hat trick, but she is now tied with Knight with a team-leading five goals this season.
"Having a hat trick was a good way to start the season," Prevost said. "Of course, I had help from my teammates. I couldn't have done it without them, especially with the third goal, Meghan made a great pass. Bemidji State was really aggressive the whole game. It was a wake-up call when they scored the first goal. We set the pace for the rest of the game after that."
The Badgers capitalized on 1-of-3 chances on the power play while holding Bemidji State to 1-of-4 with the man advantage.
Wisconsin looks to sweep the series with the Beavers when the teams meet on Sunday. The puck is scheduled to drop at 2 p.m. (CT) at the Kohl Center.