For the second consecutive night the Badger men's hockey team scored three consecutive goals to overcome an initial deficit, but Saturday night UW held on for a 3-2 win at Minnesota State.
Wisconsin improved to 13-5-0 overall and 10-4-0 in the Western Collegiate Hockey Association. The Badgers regained first place as a result of North Dakota's 4-3 loss to Minnesota-Duluth Saturday. UW had vacated the top slot Friday night after losing its series opener in Mankato in overtime.
With the Mavericks up 1-0, Badger sophomore center Andrew Joudrey got the equalizer at 17:06 in the first period.
Just 38 seconds into the second period, UW sophomore wing Robbie Earl solved Minnesota State (7-7-2, 4-7-1) senior netminder Jon Volp for his team-high 10th goal of the season, giving Wisconsin a 2-1 lead. The Badgers took a 3-1 lead 12 minutes later, when freshman forward Joe Pavelski broke a personal seven-game goal-scoring drought for his seventh of the season.
Both Earl's and Pavelski's goals came off of power plays, as Wisconsin went 2 of 4 with the man advantage. Minnesota State, meanwhile, was 0 of 7.
The Mavericks, though, pulled to within 3-2 just 8:02 into the third period when senior defenseman Jon Dubel beat Wisconsin senior goaltender Bernd Bruckler.
Bruckler, however, held up impressively down the stretch and made 31 saves—25 in the second and third periods—in improving to 10-4-0 this season.
Wisconsin sophomore wing Ross Carlson tallied two assists Saturday for his fifth multi-point game of the season.
Pavelski found the net for just the second time in the past 13 games. He has 10 points in that stretch, however, and is second on Wisconsin's roster with 21 points.