Gopher women's hockey team loses for first time

The #1 ranked Minnesota women's hockey team might have been a bit rusty after 34 days away from the ice as they lost for the first time when the Golden Gophers fell to #4 Minnesota-Duluth, 4-1. The Maroon and Gold now sit at 13-1-1 and 9-1-1 in the Western Collegiate Hockey Association. The Gophers are now 7-10-3 against the Bulldogs dating back to the 1999-2000 season.

The Bulldogs took the lead at 12:12 at 1-0 with a goal from Noemie Marin. It was only the third time this season that the Gophers have been behind this season. The last time an opponent scored first was Nov. 1 against St. Cloud State.

The Gophers came out strong in the second period, but the stanza ended with Minnesota behind by two goals. Becky Wacker scored at 5:06 of the second period. Krissy Wendell picked up the loose puck at center ice and fed it to Wacker, who went one-on-one with UMD goalie Riitta Schaublin. It was Wacker's seventh goal of the season, Wendell's 14th assist. However, the Bulldogs scored two goals within 43 seconds of each other to take back the lead. UMD added a goal at 10:07 and 10:50 for a 3-1 lead. Minnesota outshot the Bulldogs 12-6 in the second period and had two power-play chances, but could not put the puck in the net.

The Bulldogs tacked on their final goal at 3:24 of the third period when the puck just slid between Jody Horak's pads. The goal was on the power play, which was the first power-play tally that the Gophers have allowed since Nov. 1 against the Huskies.

Horak ended the night with 21 saves. Schaublin stopped 26 Gopher shots on goal.

Minnesota will look to return to its winning ways tomorrow when the Gophers wrap up the two-game series at 7:05 p.m. at the DECC.

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