Preview: Physical Tech comes to Wisconsin

Although they don't have the record to back it up, Michigan Tech brings a physical, hard-nosed team to Madison to challenge the Badgers in a weekend series. Wisconsin junior Blake Geoffrion previews the series

From an outsider's perspective, the intensity and the hard hitting is the same as it would be for a Minnesota or a North Dakota Series. Can you talk about the kind of teams Michigan Tech has had over the years and the physical nature of these games?

Blake Geoffrion: Like you said, they are real physical teams that battle hard and do whatever it takes to win. They dive to block shots, they battle really hard in all areas of the game and they don't over-analyze you. We're going to have to come out here hard. One of their strengths is their heart and how hard they play and how much pride they take in that. They have always had a good goaltender, their defense is really solid and their forwards work their (backs) off. We just have to be ready to come out and match their heart.

Is it nice to have that ‘win' monkey off your back and you guys can just focus on hockey?

Geoffrion: Absolutely. We don't really look ahead and we can't overlook Michigan Tech. They are a good team and they are going to work hard. They don't really care about our record. They like to play hard and we are going to have to match that and not worry about anything else other than the first 20 minutes Friday night.

The first line was shifted up quite a bit over the weekend. Do you know what your role is going to be this weekend?

Geoffrion: I don't think anything is final right now. Right now, I am on the line with Jordy Murray and Andy Bohmbach. I am pretty sure that's who I am going to be playing with on Friday night in the first period. With these games, you never know what lines you are going to be on because there are so many penalties and power plays and what not. If a line gets going throughout the game, Coach Eaves is probably going to stick with that. I'll start with those guys, but I can't say that I am going to finish with those guys.

You and Jordy have been on the same line almost every game this season. How has that chemistry developed between you two? Geoffrion: It's come along. Jordy is another great guy that works really hard down low. He's got great skills, a good shot, protects the puck well and it's good to play with him. He's a good little player for sure.

Is it nice to be playing Michigan Tech and not have the threat of being snowed in?

Geoffrion: Yes, absolutely (laughing). That was brutal when we got snowed in for three days. It's going to be nice playing at the Kohl.

Michigan Tech (2-4-0, 1-3-0) vs. Wisconsin (1-6-1, 1-4-1)

Date/Time - Friday-Saturday, Nov. 7-8 at 7 p.m. CT CT

Arena – Kohl Center (15,237) - 200' x 97'

Television - Friday - None. Saturday - Live on WISC-TV (Paul Braun/Rob Andringa) and tape-delayed on Wisconsin Public Television (Robb Vogel/Ron Vincent)

Radio - Wisconsin Radio Network (Brian Posick and Mike Cerniglia)

Series – Wisconsin leads 88-44-8 (54-17-4 in Madison)

Last Meeting – UW won, 4-1, at MacInnes Student Ice Arena in Houghton, Mich., on Feb. 9, 2008 to win the 2008 Winter Carnival.

Series Notes

Former Badger player Chris Tok serves as one of Michigan Tech's assistant coaches ... the Badgers have held the Huskies to two goals or less in each of the last five meetings and in eight of the last nine contests in the series ... UW is 5-3-1 in the last nine games, including 2-0-1 in the last three meetings ... the Badgers last swept the Huskies back on March 10-11, 2006 in the first round of the WCHA playoffs at the Kohl Center

After a solid performance last Friday on the fourth line where they totaled five of the team's 22 shots on goal, senior Tom Gorowsky and junior Andy Bohmbach started Saturday's game as wings for junior co-cap- tain Blake Geoffrion on the first line. The trio finished with four of the UW's five goals, with both Gorowsky and Geoffrion tallying twice in the third period

The Badgers will play at home for the second time in five weeks this season, but will return to the road for the following two weekends. Once the Badgers complete the two week road trip, they will have started the season with five of their first seven weekends on the road. However, the team will only travel three more times from the middle of November until the end of the regular season in March.

The Badgers have scored the first goal in five of their eight games this season and have led in the third period in five of their games. They have been tied or in the lead in the second period of six of the eight games.

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