MADISON, Wis. - The No. 5 Golden Gopher women's hockey team finished off a successful series in Madison after a 2-2 tie and shootout win on Saturday.
Minnesota (13-4-1) earned five of six possible points in this weekend's series against Wisconsin (15-1-2). The Gophers struck first yet again when back-to-back WCHA Rookie of the Month winner Peyton Hemp tallied her first career Border Battle goal just over 11 minutes into the contest. Wisconsin answered with the only goal in the middle frame by sophomore forward Casey O'Brien. Emily Zumwinkle and Casey O'Brien traded goals midway through the third to set the stage for overtime. After neither team was able to convert in overtime, the contest was officially ruled a tie.
The nine-round shootout was eventually decided by freshman Emily Zumwinkle as she converted her first career shootout attempt to nab the extra point for the 'U'. Taylor Heise and Emily Brown also tallied goals in the shootout.
Senior Lauren Bench earned the start again for the Gophers and stopped 45 of 47 shots. The fifth-year goaltender wasn't done there, as she stopped 7 of 9 Badgers in the shootout.
"Great weekend," said head coach Brad Frost. "Today was obviously a little different, but the kids really grinded it out and got the shootout win - which was huge. We earned five of six points on the road against the number one team in the country. I'm just really proud of our players, staff, and everybody else involved. It was a great weekend, overall."
Minnesota earned at least five points in a road series against the Badgers for the first time since 2014. Tonight's shootout win was the first for Minnesota's first since Feb. 6, 2021 - also against Wisconsin. Saturday's draw was the 14th all-time between the border rivals. Bench's 45 saves were a career-high with the Gophers. Fifth-year defender Emily Brown played in her 150th career game.
The Gophers head back home to wrap up the first half of the season against Minnesota Duluth on Friday and Saturday at Ridder Arena.