TIME: Friday, 7:00 p.m., Saturday, 7:30 p.m.
SITE: Madison, Wisconsin.
ARENA: Kohl Center
SERIES: The Gophers have been dominant against the Badgers, holding a 153-84-20 advantage including a 60-51-13 edge in Madison.
RECORD: Minnesota (9-1-0, 6-0-0 WCHA), Wisconsin (4-5-1, 3-4-1 WCHA)
LAST MEETING: The two rivalries split the season series last year, 1-1-2, ending the year with a 3-3 tie in Madison.
Top-ranked Minnesota has not been number one in the nation since 2008 and will look to hold on to this spot with a sweep of the Badgers in Madison. Unranked Wisconsin has struggled this season, losing to Northern Michigan and St. Cloud. Despite the poor record, the Badgers do hold a sweep over the North Dakota Fighting Sioux. Look for two close games between in the border battle this weekend.
BY THE NUMBERS:
8: Goals by Gophers Nick Bjugstad and Kyle Rau, leading the Gophers.
1: Nate Condon is the one Wisconsin-born play on Minnesota's roster.
6: The Badgers have six players on their roster from Minnesota.
KEYS TO THE GAME:
The Gophers have been nearly unstoppable this season when scoring the first goal of the game. In eight of their nine victories, Minnesota has put the first point on the board. Scoring early and silencing the Kohl Center crowd will make it difficult for the Badgers to battle back.
PLAYERS TO WATCH:
-- F Erik Haula #19 -- The native Fin got off to a torrid start to the season notching 17 points (7g-10a) in the first seven games, but he hasn't recorded a point since. Look for Haula to break his point drought this weekend against the Badgers and add to his nation-leading point total.
-- G Joel Rumpel #33 -- The freshman goaltender boasts a three-game unbeaten streak (2-0-1) after playing a 3-3 tie at St. Cloud State last Satur- day. Rumpel has stopped 101 of 111 shots over the three-game span. Rumpel will have to stand tall for Wisconsin if it hopes to slow down the prolific offensive attack of Minnesota, which has scored at least one goal in 28 of 31 periods this season.