BEMIDJI, Minn. (Sanford Center) -- Freshman Reece Hunt recorded the first hat trick of her career to lead the Bemidji State University women's hockey team in its 2019-20 home finale, but the No. 4 University of Minnesota attack proved to be too much as the Golden Gophers piled on three third-period goals to earn a 6-3 victory and complete a Western Collegiate Hockey Association series sweep.
The Beavers kept pace with the Gophers, matching goal-for-goal, through 41 minutes of play, but a Taylor Heise tally at the 1:31 mark of the third period pushed Minnesota into the lead for good. The visitors added an additional even-strength goal at the 16:20 mark and capped the afternoon with an empty-net goal with 2:29 to play.
In addition to Hunt, BSU's Haley Mack and Clair DeGeorge each pitched in a pair of assists, while goaltender Lauren Bench turned aside 23 of the 28 shots she faced.
Bemidji State, now 14-15-3 overall and 9-12-2 in WCHA play, will travel to St. Cloud, Minn. and St. Cloud State University to wrap up the 2019-20 regular season Feb. 14-15. The Beavers and Huskies will get the two-game series underway with a 6:07 p.m. start Friday, while Saturday's season finale is set for a 3:07 opening face off.