WCHA Press Releases

The lone home series for a WCHA team sees top-ranked Wisconsin welcoming Harvard from the ECAC.
WCHA Week 9: A Nonconference Feast
FOUR WCHA TEAMS TO PLAY A TOTAL OF EIGHT OUT-OF-CONFERENCE GAMES ON THANKSGIVING WEEKEND

Opening Faceoff

- Polling Place: Led by unanimous No. 1 Wisconsin and No. 2 Minnesota, the Women's League of the Western Collegiate Hockey Association (WCHA) enters Week 9 with three of the top-six teams in the USCHO.com and USA Today/USA Hockey Magazine polls.

  • The Badgers (13-1-1) and Gophers (11-2-1) remained the same following league sweeps. Ohio State (11-5-0) moved up to No. 6 after a sweep of then-No. 7/8 Minnesota Duluth, which is still receiving votes.
  • Wisconsin leads the country with its 13 victories and is tops among Division I programs with a .929 winning percentage, while the Gophers and Buckeyes are tied for second with their 11 wins each.

- Every Rink, Every Night: Now a third of the way through the 2018-19 regular season, WCHA teams have played the nation's four-toughest schedules to date and six of the top-12.

  • Minnesota Duluth, which after this weekend's trip to No. 3 Clarkson will have played 10 of its 14 games against ranked opponents, has played the NCAA's toughest slate. Bemidji State has played the second-toughest, followed by Wisconsin (No. 3), Minnesota (No. 4), Ohio State (No. 6) and Minnesota State (No. 12).

- Horns Up: At 5-5-2, Minnesota State has equaled its 2017-18 victory output (5-28-1), while this is the latest into a season (12 games) the Mavericks have been at .500 or better since the 2010-11 campaign (6-5-1 after 12 games).

  • The Mavericks are tied for sixth-best nationally (fifth among Division I schools) by allowing just 1.67 goals-per-game, while they are eighth (fifth D-I) with a 90.2-percent penalty-kill rate (37-for-41). Freshman goaltender Abigail Levy has played in all 12 games and ranks among NCAA leaders for save percentage (fifth at .947), goals-against average (12th at 1.64) and saves (second at 360).

- The Next Generation: Five of the nation's top-20 freshmen scorers (by points-per-game) skate in the WCHA.

  • Wisconsin's Sophie Shirley ranks fifth at (fourth D-I) with 1.07 points-per-game (9g-6a--15pts), St. Cloud State's Jenniina Nylund is sixth (fifth) at 0.93 (4-10--14), Minnesota Duluth's Gabbie Hughes is tied for 14th (11th) at 0.75 (4-5--9), Minnesota's Amy Potomak is 16th (13th) at 0.71 (3-7--10) and the Gophers' Taylor Heise is 20th (17th) at 0.64 (4-5--9).

- A Lot of Wins: A combined 938 coaching victories will be behind the benches this weekend in Madison, when top-ranked Wisconsin hosts Harvard.

  • Earlier this season, UW head coach Mark Johnson became the winningest coach in NCAA collegiate women's ice hockey (now 472-84-12). He surpassed Harvard's Katey Stone, who is now third at 466-227-49. The teams have not met since a 2-1 Badgers' victory in a 2014 NCAA quarterfinal.

By the Numbers

- 191:32: Active scoreless streak for reigning WCHA Goaltender of the Year, Kristen Campbell of Wisconsin. The junior last yielded a goal at the 9:17 mark of the third period Nov. 2, has three-consecutive shutouts and now ranks among NCAA leaders for wins (first with 13), clean sheets (tied for first with four), goals-against average (second at 1.03) and save percentage (11th at 1.40).


The Week Ahead

- Nonconference Feast: The WCHA will put its NCAA-best .667 nonconference winning percentage (19-9-2) to the test with eight games this weekend.

  • No. 2 Minnesota at Windjammer Classic: The Gophers travel to Burlington, Vt. for the Windjammer Classic, beginning Friday vs. No. 8 St. Lawrence of ECAC Hockey. Minnesota will then face either Syracuse from College Hockey America (CHA) or host Vermont from Hockey East on Saturday.
  • Minnesota Duluth at No. 3 Clarkson: The Bulldogs continue playing the nation's toughest schedule with a trip to Potsdam, N.Y. to face the ECAC's back-to-back national champion (and third-ranked) Golden Knights.
  • Minnesota State at Lindenwood: The Mavericks play their second-consecutive road series at a CHA opponent, with a trip to Wentzville, Mo. to skate against the Lions.
  • Harvard at No. 1 Wisconsin: The lone home series for a WCHA team sees the top-ranked Badgers welcoming Harvard from the ECAC. Both games are available on BTN Plus and FloHockey.tv.

The Week in Review

at No. 7 Ohio State 3, No. 7/8 Minnesota Duluth 1
at No. 7 Ohio State 4, No. 7/8 Minnesota Duluth 1
(Nov. 16 and 17 at OSU Ice Rink; Columbus, Ohio)

- The seventh-ranked Buckeyes defended home ice in a key WCHA series, sweeping No. 7/8 Minnesota Duluth behind a trio of league Players of the Week.

- UMD struck first Friday on Jalyn Elmes' first period goal, but OSU scored the game's final three goals for a 3-1 win. Madison Field tied the contest 1:24 after Elmes' marker, Emma Maltais netted the game-winner at 11:00 of the second stanza and Field followed with her second goal of the game before the second intermission. WCHA Rookie of the Week Andrea Braendli made 27 saves to outduel UMD's Maddie Rooney (42 stops).

- The Bulldogs again scored first Saturday (this time by Sydney Brodt 3:50 into the game), but WCHA Forward of the Week Tatum Skaggs responded with a hat trick to lift the Buckeyes to a 4-1 triumph. Skaggs scored a power-play goal in the first period, an even-strength marker in the third and then sealed the outcome with an empty-netter. Sara Sakkinen also scored for OSU, while WCHA Defenseman of the Week Jincy Dunne had a pair of assists.


No. 2 Minnesota 4, at St. Cloud State 3 - OT
(Nov. 17 at Herb Brooks National Hockey Center; St. Cloud, Minn.)
at No. 2 Minnesota 7, St. Cloud State 2
(Nov. 18 at Ridder Arena; Minneapolis, Minn.)

- The second-ranked Gophers ran their unbeaten streak against the Huskies to 45 games (44-0-1), but had to survive an overtime scare Saturday and a combined 88 saves from Emma Polusny to do so.

- Freshman Taylor Heise netted the winner 2:57 into overtime Saturday, giving Minnesota a 4-3 victory on the road. The teams were tied 1-1 entering the third period but combined for four goals, as SCSU took a 2-1 lead on Jenniina Nylund's strike, fell behind on consecutive markers from the Gophers' Abigail Boreen (first career) and Sarah Potomak, then tied the contest on a clutch Hannah Potrykus goal with just 1:22 remaining in regulation. Polusny made 43 saves for the Huskies.

- Polusny made 45 more stops Sunday in Minneapolis, but the Gophers' four-goal first period paved the way for a 7-2 triumph. Grace Zumwinkle (2g-1a) and Amy Potomak (1g-2a) had three-point efforts, while Kelly Pannek and Nicole Schammel each had one goal and one assist apiece for Minnesota.


at No. 1 Wisconsin 5, Bemidji State 0
at No. 1 Wisconsin 3, Bemidji State 0
(Nov. 16 and 17 at LaBahn Arena; Madison, Wis.)

- WCHA Goaltender of the Week Kristen Campbell ran her scoreless streak to 191:32 with her second- and third-consecutive shutouts, backstopping the top-ranked Badgers to a sweep of the Beavers.

- Freshman Sophie Shirley had two of Wisconsin's four first-period goals Friday, leading the way to a 5-0 victory. Sophia Shaver and Delaney Drake also scored in the opening stanza, while Shirley set up Britta Curl's second-period marker. Campbell turned aside all 15 shots she faced, while Kerigan Dowhy made 43 saves for Bemidji State.

- The Badgers again struck in the opening 20 minutes Saturday, using first-period goals by Presley Norby and Shaver in a 3-0 victory. Annie Pankowski lit the lamp in the second period against Dowhy (37 stops), while Campbell was again perfect with 12 saves.


Minnesota State 4, at Robert Morris 4 - OT
Minnesota State 2, at Robert Morris 1
(Nov. 16 and 17 at Colonials Arena; Neville Island, Pa.)

- The Mavericks improved to .500 on the season (5-5-2) with an undefeated nonconference road weekend (1-0-1) at Robert Morris.

- Minnesota State took a 4-1 lead into the third period Friday, but the host Colonials unleashed a 16-shot barrage and battled back for the 4-4 tie. Freshman Brooke Bryant had her first career multi-goal game for the Mavericks, while Corbin Boyd had a two-goal, one-assist effort. Abigail Levy made 40 saves in net.

- The Mavericks turned the tables Saturday, scoring twice in the third period to erase a 1-0 deficit and escape with a 2-1 win. Brittyn Fleming tied the score with a power-play marker at 10:28 of the final stanza, then Mankato native Rebekah Kolstad netted the tie-breaking, game-winner with 3:41 remaining. Levy made 33 stops, including nine in the final period.


TUESDAY, NOV. 21

St. Cloud State 3, vs. Bemidji State 0
(2018 U.S. Hockey Hall of Fame Museum Women's Face-Off Classic;
Essentia Health Sports Center; Brainerd, Minn.)

- The Huskies and Beavers brought world-class NCAA Division I women's college hockey to Brainerd, Minn., meeting at the 2018 U.S. Hockey Hall of Fame Museum Women's Face-Off Classic.

- St. Cloud State received a 36-save shutout from 2018 Swiss Olympian Janine Alder to earn an impressive 3-0 win. Alder lifted the Huskies despite being outshot, 36-24, while SCSU scored once in every period. Hallie Theodosopoulos (first-period game-winner), Julia Tylke (second period) and Ivy Dynek (third) all lit the lamp for the victorious Huskies.