Gophers Sweep Michigan State
MINNEAPOLIS (GopherSports.com) – The Gopher Hockey program rallied with three goals in the third period for a 3-1 win against Michigan State on Saturday as Minnesota swept the Spartans and climbed above .500 for the first time this season.
Justin Kloos and Tyler Sheehy factored into all three goals for Minnesota (11-10-0 overall, 6-2-0-0 Big Ten) while Connor Reilly notched the game-winning goal and had an assist. Leon Bristedt scored an empty-net goal with less than a second to play to seal the victory and the series sweep for the Maroon & Gold.
Following a scoreless first period, Michigan State’s Matt DeBlouw scored 2:53 into the second period for the only goal of the night for Michigan State (5-17-0, 1-7-0-0).
After that, it was all Gophers.
Kloos, who scored 21 seconds into Friday’s 5-2 win over the Spartans, kicked things off with a goal 31 seconds into the third period on Saturday night for his seventh of the year (assists from Sheehy and Reilly) before Reilly followed suit with his second of the year midway through the stanza at 11:34 (assists from Kloos and Sheehy).
When Michigan State pulled Jake Hildebrand in favor of the extra attacker, Bristedt pocketed his 11th goal of the year into the empty net at 19:59 as the puck cleared the goal line with 0.1 seconds left on the clock. Sheehy and Kloos earned assists on the goal as Minnesota picked up its third-straight win. Sheehy’s three-assist night set a new career high for the freshman forward and matched his career high for points.
Eric Schierhorn made 17 saves in goal for the Maroon & Gold in his 21st-straight start. The rookie now boasts an 11-10-0 record on the year.
Minnesota only had to kill one penalty on the night, but the team did so successfully – extending its streak to 16-straight penalty kills without allowing a goal. The Gophers also outshout the Spartans 32-18.
With the victory, Minnesota remains in a tie for first in the Big Ten with Michigan as each team has 18 points on the season. The Gophers are now 21-1-2-0 all-time in Big Ten games on home ice.
The Gophers return to action next weekend with a Big Ten road series, opening up the Border Battle with Wisconsin in Madison.