Women's hockey team bounces back with OT win

The Minnesota women's hockey team bounced back from its first loss of the season as Kelly Stephens scored a game-winning, 4-3 overtime goal to come back from a 3-1 deficit against the #4 UMD. Bulldogs at the Duluth Entertainment Convention Center. The Golden Gophers split the series, improving their record to 14-1-1 overall, 10-1-1 in the Western Collegiate Hockey Association. UMD won last night's contest by a score of 4-1.

The Bulldogs took the early lead for the second straight night. The Gophers were called with hooking and tripping penalities at 5:59 and 7:13, leaving 46 seconds for a Bulldog 5-3 opportunity. Caroline Ouellette scored the power-play goal at 7:36 of the first period. The Gophers visited the penalty box four times in the first period, which also included a 10-minute game misconduct call on Krissy Wendell.

Minnesota and UMD went scoreless until the 15:59 mark of the second period when Natalie Darwitz scored her 14th goal this season. Darwitz picked up a Danielle Ashley slap shot rebound and lit the lamp for her 39th point of the season. However, Minnesota's lead only lasted 11 seconds when Tricia Guest scored at 16:12 on a delayed penalty goal.

The Bulldogs added an insurance goal at 10:13 of the third period when UMD scored a four-on-four goal. The Gophers ended their power-play scoreless streak when Lyndsay Wall added her sixth goal of the season at 14:04. Darwitz and Stephens set up Wall and were credited with the assists. All six of Wall's goals have come off a slap shot. Minnesota was held scoreless in five opportunities the previous night.

The goal added an extra life to Minnesota's offense, and they tied the game 42 seconds later when Darwitz scored her second goal of the game at 14:46. With the tie, the Gophers sent the game into overtime. It took the Gophers just 15 seconds to take the overtime win. Stephens scored her eighth goal of the season, while Wendell was credited with the lone assist. It was the second overtime game the Gophers had played in this season with the other being a 1-1 tie against Minnesota State in November.

Jody Horak started in goal for the second straight night, stopping 21 shots. She improves her record to 11-1-1. The Golden Gophers return home next weekend when they face No. 7 Mercyhurst, Jan. 16-17. Both games are 7:05 p.m. starts in Ridder Arena.

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