Senior defenseman CJ Ludwig had a goal and an assist for the Wildcats

MADISON, Wis. - The Northern Michigan University hockey team kicked off the 2013-14 season with a 5-2 loss at No. 3-ranked University of Wisconsin on Friday (Oct. 11) evening. Senior defenseman CJ Ludwig had a goal and an assist but the Badgers scored three goals in the first period to take command early from the Kohl Center.

Ludwig's goal cut the Badger lead to 3-1 late (17:41) in the second period on the power play. Assisting on the tally were junior forward Ryan Daugherty and senior forward Erik Higby.

UW scored with just over a minute remaining (18:58) before the second intermission to push the lead back to three. Tyler Barnes scored with an extra attacker on a delayed penalty.

Grant Besse scored an even strength goal 1:43 into the third period to give the home team a 5-1 lead.

Senior forward Stephan Vigier added a power play goal with 1:19 left in the game for NMU's second tally. Junior defenseman Mitch Jones and Ludwig assisted on Vigier's 24th goal of his career.

Wisconsin's three goals in the first period were scored by Joseph LaBate, Jake McCabe and Michael Mersch. McCabe's goal was a shorthanded tally while Mersch's was on the man advantage.

The two teams combined for 32 minutes of penalties. NMU was 2-for-9 on the power play while Wisconsin was 1-for-7.

Wisconsin outshot Northern 38-20. Freshman goaltender Mathias Dahlstrom had 33 saves in his first game between the pipes for the 'Cats. Landon Peterson stopped 18 NMU shots for the home team.

The two teams meet on Saturday (Oct. 12) at 9:07 p.m. Eastern to wrap up the non-conference series.

Game Notes: Ludwig now has six goals and 23 assists in his career...Before Friday night NMU had won five of the last six games vs. UW...Five Wildcats played their first game in the Green and Gold...Attendance was 8,092.