Jen Schoullis netted two power-play goals to lead the No. 3/5 University of Minnesota women's hockey team to a 4-2 win over Ohio State, tonight at Ridder Arena. The Golden Gophers are now 24-8-2 on the season and are within one game of advancing to the WCHA FINAL FACEOFF Championship next weekend.
Minnesota jumped out to a 2-0 lead after the first period of play. Kelly Seeler wound up for a shot at the high slot for her fifth goal of the season. She placed it to Lisa Steffes' glove side for an early lead just 2:10 into the contest. Schoullis scored her first of two power-play goals when at 15:52 in the first period. Anne Schleper and Megan Bozek assisted on the play. Minnesota outshot OSU, 17-6 in the first stanza, resulting in two goals.
The Gophers added to the lead when Sarah Erickson scored her 17th goal of the season at 6:49 in the second. Amanda Kessel held the single assist, her 28th assist of the year as Erickson's shot fluttered over Steffes as she was going down for the shot. Schoullis put the game at 4-0 when she capitalized on a tip-in at 11:29 with Schleper and Erickson on the assists.
However, OSU's Laura McIntosh scored two goals within 33 seconds of each other at 13:33 and 14:06 in the second to put the game at 4-2. The Buckeyes outshot Minnesota, 14-11 in the second. The scoring in the first and second would be all the Gophers would need to solidify the game. Minnesota had 10 shots on goal, while OSU had six in the final period. OSU attempted a comeback when it pulled Steffes late in the third, but the Buckeyes committed a penalty at 18:50 to give Minnesota its final power-play attempt and the game.
Minnesota went 2-for-5 on the power play, while holding OSU scoreless in three attempts. OSU committed five penalties to Minnesota's three.
Minnesota and Ohio State will play again tomorrow at 5:07 p.m. at Ridder Arena.