Minneapolis, Minn. -- The No. 5 Golden Gopher women's hockey team knocked off the top-ranked Badgers by a score of 3-2 on Friday night at LaBahn Arena.
Minnesota (13-4-0) put a tally in Wisconsin's (15-1-1) loss column for the first time this season and marked the first win over the Badgers in Madison since 2018. The Gophers got off to their quickest start of the season as senior Taylor Heise scored 27 seconds into the content. The goal marked Heise's sixth opening goal and 14th overall on the season. Senior Emily Oden doubled the lead with her seventh goal of the season with 1:13 to go in the opening period. The Badgers evened things up after two goals from sophomores Casey O'Brien and Maddi Wheeler. Nine seconds after Wisconsin evened things up, senior Catie Skaja deposited a Kennedy Blair turnover to give the 'U' a lead they would not relinquish. The Badgers outshot the Gophers 33-27 in Friday's contest.
Fifth-year netminder Lauren Bench won her fourth straight start after a stellar 31-save performance. The victory was her first over the Badgers as a member of the Maroon and Gold. Blair stopped 24 of 27 shots in the loss.
"Great win tonight on the road against an undefeated, number one team," said head coach Brad Frost. "The kids played with a ton of grit, passion, and heart. It's just so fun to see them get rewarded for how hard they've played this year. We're really looking forward to enjoying this one tonight and trying to get the sweep here tomorrow."
Minnesota snaps an eight game winless streak against their border rivals. Friday's victory marked the 13th all-time victory by Minnesota over a top-ranked Badgers team and moves the Maroon and Gold to 54-45-13 all-time against Wisconsin.
The Gophers will look to complete the sweep over the Badgers tomorrow at 3:00 pm at LaBahn Arena.