2020-21 WCHA Game Recap

Senior goaltender Kennedy Blair made 30 saves for the Badgers
Blair Backstops Wisconsin To 5-0 Win Over Minnesota
Senior goaltender Kennedy Blair made 30 saves for the Badgers

MADISON, Wis.- The second-ranked Wisconsin women's hockey team made a statement on Friday afternoon, blanking No. 1 Minnesota, 5-0, at LaBahn Arena.

Sophie Shirley, Dara Greig, Britta Curl, Daryl Watts and Makenna Webster all scored for the Badgers (5-2-0) while snapping the Golden Gophers (8-2-0) seven-game winning streak.

The Badgers got off to a hot start in the first period with two goals, one from Sophie Shirley and one from Greig on the power play, to take a two-goal lead heading into the first intermission.

Curl snuck the puck behind the Golden Gophers' Lauren Bench to score the Badgers' third goal and extend UW's lead in the middle frame. After a critical penalty kill, Watts snapped the puck past Bench on a rush to take a 4-0 lead after 40 minutes.

Webster capped off the scoring for UW, redirecting a shot from Nicole LaMantia past Minnesota netminder Makayla Pahl one minute into the final frame.

Kennedy Blair recorded her third shutout of the season with 30 saves. Minnesota's Bench allowed four Badger goals and Pahl allowed one. The Badgers also outpaced the Golden Gophers 34-30 in shots on goal.

Three Notes of the Game

- This marks the second-straight game at LaBahn Arena the Badgers have shutout the Golden Gophers. UW earned a 3-0 win against UM on Jan. 25, 2020.

- Freshman addition Lacey Eden made her debut with the Badgers. She put up five shots on goal against the Golden Gophers.

- Britta Curl, Nicole LaMantia, Sophie Shirley, Daryl Watts and Makenna Webster all recorded two points against Minnesota. Curl, Shirley, Watts and Webster each had a goal and an assist while LaMantia had two assists.

Straight from the Rink

UW head coach Mark Johnson
On preparation and improving on past series:

"As I just told the team coming out of the locker room, they earned the victory and it started on Monday in our practice. We had a good practice on Monday, again Tuesday and Wednesday. The key was to try and go out and play the game like we practiced, this afternoon we were able to do that."

On the power play scoring:
"The first part of it wasn't very pretty, but the second group went out there and again, it's one of those things where if you can score, it just injects you with some confidence."

Britta Curl
On the energy and confidence throughout the game:

"I kind of gained confidence when my linemates are playing well and from when everyone else is cheering each other on on the bench. It was a really fun act here today, I think we were all having a lot of fun and that showed.

Sophie Shirley
On how her early goal charged the team:

"I think anytime you can get a goal like that early on, it kind of builds confidence throughout your whole lineup. Getting that early one kind of kick-started our whole team to be able to continue to get pucks to the net like we were talking about before. Then being able to bear down and get them in the net finally. I think it was a long time coming and it was nice to see the floodgates open up there."

Up Next:

The Badgers wrap up their series with Minnesota on Saturday with a 2 p.m. contest that can be seen live on Fox Sports Wisconsin, Fox Sports North and the Fox Sports Go app. In addition, the game can be heard on 100.9 FM.

Game Summary

Friday, January 15, 2021

Game statistics
30 Shots 34
0 / 2 Power Plays 1 / 4
4 / 8 PIM 2 / 4
8-2-0 Records 5-2-0
Minnesota Wisconsin
Sophie Shirley (3)
1st/8:26  GW
Dara Greig (2)
1st/15:34 PP
Britta Curl (2)
Daryl Watts (5)
Makenna Webster (2)
Minnesota Wisconsin
Lauren Bench
40:00, 21 Saves, 4 GA
(L, 7-2-0)

Makayla Pahl
20:00, 8 Saves, 1 GA
Kennedy Blair
59:58, 30 Saves, 0 GA
(W, 5-2-0)

Empty Net
0:02, 0 GA