MINNEAPOLIS, MINN. - The St. Cloud State University Huskies women's hockey team (7-15-2, 2-12-1-0 WCHA) tied 2-2 and earned a shootout win against the Minnesota State University Mankato Mavericks (8-7-4, 3-7-3-1 WCHA) in a Saturday afternoon game Jan. 5 at Ridder Arena in game one of the Minnesota Cup.
Freshman forward Jenniina Nylund got the scoring started at 17:10 of the first period with an unassisted goal. It was her sixth goal of the season.
The Mavericks came back to tie the Huskies 1-1 seven minutes into the second period, and with one second remaining in the period MSU had a puck slide past SCSU goalie Emma Polusny. The goal was reviewed in-game and was confirmed to fully pass the goal line before the end of the period.
Though the Mavericks dominated in shots throughout the matchup, St. Cloud was unwavering in their fight. With only 68 seconds remaining in the game, junior defenseman Abby Thiessen scored the game-tying goal for the Huskies, forcing the teams into overtime.
Five minutes of overtime was still not enough to decide the game. St. Cloud State and Mankato would officially end the game in a 2-2 tie, but went to a three-round shootout to decide the winner.
Seniors Julia Tylke and Hannah Potrykus each went a round in the shootout but were turned away by the Mavericks netminder. Nylund would be the only goal scorer of the shootout and won the game, pushing SCSU on to the tournament championship. Polusny stopped all three of MSU's shootout attempts.
St. Cloud State goaltender Polusny stopped 39 shots in the game; the Mavericks' Abigail Levy had 23 saves. Final shots on goal from today's game were SCSU 25, MSU 41. St. Cloud went 0-1 on the power play and 1-1 on the penalty kill.
St. Cloud State will take on the winner of the Duluth vs. Minnesota matchup in game two of the tournament this evening. St. Cloud will play in the championship game tomorrow for the inaugural WCHA Minnesota Cup.
MINNESOTA CUP - St. Cloud State will participate in the first ever Minnesota Cup featuring the Gophers, Minnesota Duluth, Minnesota State-Mankato and SCSU in a tournament format on January 5-6, 2019, hosted by the University of Minnesota. Minnesota's five Division-I women's hockey teams will take their shot at an annual state tournament as the WCHA introduced the new tournament as part of its 20th anniversary season in 2018-19. All four games are considered nonconference games.
The Huskies return home to the Herb Brooks National Hockey Center January 18 for a 3:07 p.m. matchup against WCHA opponent, the Minnesota State Mavericks.