Border Beatdown

The border battle hasn't see anything like this in over a decade. No.15 Wisconsin gets four second-period goals and Scott Gudmandson stopped all 24 shots, as the Badgers destroy the Gophers, 6-0, at Mariucci Arena.

MINNEAPOLIS - The Badgers got the Border Battle off to a rousing start Saturday at Marriucci Arena, as Wisconsin (6-2-1, 3-1-1 WCHA) shut out the Gophers, 6-0. Wisconsin's freshmen combined for four goals and four assists to lead the Badgers offensively.

Right winger Michael Mersch scored two goals, while right winger Mark Zengerle (power play) and left winger Tyler Barnes had one each, combina combining for a plus-11 rating to send many in the announced crowd of 9,689 home unhappy.

"They performed very well," UW Coach Mike Eaves said. "The real test will be how we respond (tonight) because consistency is one thing that usually lacks in a freshman's repertoire."

Mersch gave the Badgers the 1-0 lead at 19:17 of the first period, converting off his own rebounds for his fourth goal of the season. The goal capped off a period the Badgers outshot Minnesota (5-4-0, 3-4-0), 14-9, in the period. That was just the start of the offensive outburst for the Badgers.

In the second period, Derek Lee would extend Wisconsin's lead. Zengerle set up the play with pass from behind the net that gave Lee a wide-open look at mostly empty net, scoring at 1:50 of the second period.

Fairbault, Minn., native Jordy Murray scored the third goal after receiving the pass on a give-and-go from Craig Smith. Murray put the puck past Minnesota's goalie Alex Kangas to give UW a 3-0 lead at 8:20 of the second.

Mersch scored his second goal of the game at 12:12 of the second period to extend the lead to 4-0. Frankie Simonelli took a shot and Mersch poked from underneath Kangas for the goal fifth of the year.

The Badgers would score their fourth goal of the period with just 40 seconds left. With Wisconsin on the power-play Zengerle converted a rebound to give the Badgers a 5-0 lead after two periods.

In the third period, Craig Smith was taken down on a breakaway to grant Wisconsin a penalty shot. Smith's failed attempt marked the first penalty shot for Wisconsin since Darren Haley scored on St. Cloud State's Tim Lideen on Oct. 19, 1996.

Eagan, Minn, native Barnes concluded the scoring for the night at 13:55 of the third period. Barnes converted a wrap-around for the goal to lead Wisconsin to the final score of 6-0. Frankie Simonelli was also credited with an assist on the play.

Scott Gudmandson made 24 saves to get his second shutout of the year for Wisconsin and improve his record to 3-2-1. That marked the first UW shutout over Minnesota since March 18, 2006. Kangas took the loss for Minnesota to fall to 1-4-0 despite stopping 32 shots.

The game marked the first six goal win over Minnesota since a 7-1 victory on March 12, 1990. Wisconsin was 1-for-6 on the power play while holding Minnesota to 0-for-4.

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