Puck teams complete weekend sweeps

Both Gophers hockey teams capped strong weekend showings by completing two-games sweeps on Saturday. The men dumped Minnesota State-Mankato while the women knocked off Mercyhurst.

Sophomore Thomas Vanek led the men's team to a 10-3 rout at Mankato with his best game of the season. Vanek scored three goals and added two assists, one of six Gophers with multiple points on the night.

Keith Ballard added two goals and an assist, while Grant Potulny and Danny Irmen each had a goal and two assists.

Kellen Briggs again earned the win in the nets. The freshman had his shutout streak snapped at 181:24, but he bumped his record to 5-0-2 over his last seven games.

The Gophers (13-8-3, 8-7-1 WCHA) have 11 wins and two ties in their last 14 games. They'll spend the week gearing up for a showdown with No. 1 North Dakota next weekend at Mariucci Arena.

Women roll again

The Gopher women's team, ranked No. 1 in the country, completed a weekend sweep of No. 7 Mercyhurst with a 3-1 win Saturday at Ridder Arena.

Playing without star forward Natalie Darwitz, who is likely out for the season with an elbow injury, the Gophers got a goal and an assist from Krissy Wendell and solid goaltending from Brenda Reinen, who moved to 4-0-0 on the year with 32 saves.

The Gophers (16-1-1) host Minnesota State-Mankato next Saturday and Sunday afternoon. Both games are scheduled to start at 1:05 p.m., and Saturday's game will be carried live on Fox Sports Net North.

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