MADISON, Wisc. - The No. 1 Wisconsin women's hockey team bested Bemidji State in an aggressive 4-1 victory Saturday afternoon at LaBahn Arena in front of a sellout crowd.
Senior captain Mekenzie Steffen put the Badgers (9-0-0, 3-0-0 WCHA) on the board eight minutes into the first sending the puck top shelf into the Beavers' (3-3-1, 2-1-0 WCHA) net thanks to assists from juniors Delaney Drake and Grace Bowlby.
In a struggle for possession, Bemidji State tied up the score in the first half of the second period.
UW responded with an intensive attack that paid off with 8:52 left in the second. The Badgers reclaimed the lead as sophomore Britta Curl tipped in a blueliner by senior Maddie Rowe and junior Brette Pettet.
After several scoring opportunities, sophomore Nicole LaMantia knocked in another at 10:26 in the third, assisted by senior Alexis Mauermann
Sophomore Sophie Shirley sealed the win on an empty-netter with 1:08 left in the game off passes by LaMantia and junior Natalie Buchbinder.
Three Notes of the Game
- Sophie Shirley has tallied a point in every game this season and holds a four-game goal streak after Saturday's game. Her nine goals pace the NCAA.
- Kristen Campbell stopped 11 of the 12 shots she faced to earn her NCAA-leading eighth win of the season.
- UW has killed 21 straight penalties and has allowed a power-play goal in only one of its nine games this year.
Straight from the Rink:
UW Head Coach Mark Johnson
On the game:
"Well it's just a matter of working hard. There were times of the game we did and times of the game we didn't. They're a stingy team. Give them credit for working hard and creating opportunities. They got a couple of power plays in the first period and then I think we pushed back in the last seven or eight minutes in the second and managed the puck a lot better and created some things. It is what it is and it certainly wasn't pretty at different times but we are looking for timely goals it's a game where you can educate your players."
"Overall it was fine and you come away with a win and you're happy and then move onto tomorrow. Hopefully we'll start the game tomorrow like we played the last seven or eight minutes of the second period and parts of the third period. We didn't give up many opportunities. The one the goalie gave up was just a bad read and a bad angle by one of our players. If we don't do that they probably wouldn't get a chance on it. Those things are going to happen in a game and, again, it's a learning opportunity. The big thing is you try to get better from it."
The Badgers take on the Beavers for their final game of the weekend series on Sunday. Puck drop at LaBahn Arena is at 2:07 p.m.