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Penn State Hockey Falls To Minnesota 5-1

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The Gophers were too much for the Lions tonight.

Photo by Heather Weikel

Goals

Team First Pd. Second Pd. Third Pd. Final
Team First Pd. Second Pd. Third Pd. Final
PSU 0 1 0 1
MINN 1 3 1 5

Penn State (16-5-2) got down early and never was able to recover. While the team has gone 0-3-1 over the past four games, there is no need to panic for Nittany Lion fans. Minnesota is one of the best teams in the country, and has only lost five games at home during conference play in the five seasons of Big Ten competition. If the Lions can find a way to a win on Saturday, it would be a huge boost for the team. If not, it will make the series in two weeks that much more critical when the Gophers come to Hockey Valley during THON weekend.

Game two of the series will be televised nationally on the Big Ten Network on Saturday night at 8 p.m.

Game Summary

The first ten minutes of the game saw the teams skating evenly, with each having a couple of scoring chances. The teams skated 4 on 4 four two minutes following a penalty on Derian Hamilton of Penn State for tripping and another on Tyler Sheehy of Minnesota for embellishing on the same play. The penalty came and went and the teams were back to 5 on 5 midway through the first period.

Vinni Lettieri hit the post with 7 minutes remaining on the clock and Chris Funkey thanked the metal defenseman. The sound reverberated through Mariucci Arena but resulted in no goal for the Gophers.

A few minutes later the puck got past Funkey when Lettieri finished a rebound in front of the Penn State net to give Minnesota an early 1-0 lead with 17:22 expired from the first period clock.

The second frame started with a frantic pace but it was Minnesota that got the advantage when Rem Pitlick put a back-hand rebound past Funkey for a 2-0 Gopher lead just 57 seconds into the period.

The Gophers later had a 4 on 1 break but were unable to put the puck in the net. The puck remained in the offensive zone, however, and a couple of shots later, it went past Funkey for a 3-0 lead with 4:33 off the clock. Rem Pitlick scored for the second time.

Trevor Hamilton scored with a nasty wrist shot from the point to pull the Lions closer with 12 minutes left to play in the period. The goal got the game to a manageable 3-1 spread, and put a wave of enthusiasm in the skates of Penn State. Following the goal the ice was tilted in favor of PSU for the next few minutes.

With 4.1 seconds left in the period, Minnesota broke the Lion’s spirit with a late goal to take the lead back to three goals, 4-1. Tyler Sheehy finished off a great pass from Justin Kloos.

The final period was played well but there were no goals until the Gophers added a late power-play goal by Mike Szmatula in the final minutes.

Game Comparison

Team Shots Saves Power Play Pen-M Faceoffs Blocks
Team Shots Saves Power Play Pen-M Faceoffs Blocks
PSU 29 25 0-2 1-2 29 9
MINN 30 28 0-1 2-4 28 19

Stars of the Game

First Star- Rem Pitlick, Minnesota. 2 goals.

Second Star- Tyler Sheehy, Minnesota. 1 goal, 2 assists.

Third Star- Jake Bischoff, Minnesota. 3 assists.