No. 6 Wisconsin blew out No. 17 Penn State in the series opener on Friday night.
Wisconsin took advantage of two defensive breakdowns by the Nittany Lions, both resulting in goals- one by Carson Bantle and one by William Whitelaw. The Badgers had a 2-0 lead just six minutes into the game. Dylan Lugris got a lucky bounce for Penn State when his shot from the point deflected off a Wisconsin player’s stick and floated into the net. Wisconsin took a 2-1 lead into the first intermission.
Much like the first period, Wisconsin struck twice early in the second, with Carson Bantle scoring on a partial breakaway less than a minute in. The Badgers added to their advantage when Quinn Finley forced a turnover in the offensive zone and scored unassisted. Wisconsin’s defensive scheme shut down Penn State’s offense for the remainder of the period.
William Whitelaw scored his second goal of the game for the Badgers to extend the lead to 5-1 at the 6:37 mark of the third period. Alex Servagno cut the deficit to 5-2 for the Lions on a feed from Tyler Paquette, and Paquette followed up four minutes later with a goal of his own after a penalty kill. Carson Bantle ended any hope of a last-minute rally with a hat trick goal on the power play.
Standings and Such
Penn State dropped to sixth in the Big Ten in point percentage with the loss. Wisconsin is now second, trailing only Michigan State. The Nittany Lions held their No. 17 spot in the Pairwise, while the Badgers moved up to No. 5.
The second game of the series will be played Saturday at 8pm Eastern. The game will be broadcast on Big Ten Plus.