The No. 3 Golden Gophers improved to 4-0-0 on the season, 2-0-0 in WCHA play as Minnesota defeated St. Cloud State 8-0 in Ridder Arena. Sophomore Amanda Kessel recorded a true hat trick, while sophomore Kelly Terry had two goals for the Gophers. Junior Megan Bozek tallied the gamewinner in the first period.
Minnesota recorded three penalties in the first period, giving the Huskies plenty of power play opportunities. Sarah Erickson went to the penalty box halfway through the period, and Jen Schoullis joined her 28 seconds later, giving St. Cloud State over one and a half minutes of five-on-three play, but the Huskies were not able to score. The Gophers managed one goal in the first period as junior Megan Bozek found the net with just over a minute on the clock, getting assists from freshman Rachel Ramsey and senior Jen Schoullis.
The Gophers came out strong in the second period, scoring just 10 seconds after the start of the period. Junior Kelly Terry got her first goal of the season, assisted by senior Emily West and sophomore Sarah Davis. The scoring flurry continued when Terry got another goal three and a half minutes later to put Minnesota up 3-0, assisted by senior Anne Schleper and Davis. It took only 10 more seconds to make it 4-0 as Amanda Kessel got her first goal of the game, assisted by Erickson.
Kessel continued to shoot often and accurately. She notched her second goal of the game just over eight minutes into the period, assisted by Erickson and sophomore Baylee Gillanders. The point was the first this season for Gillanders.
Kessel found the net again a few minutes later, making Kessel the first Gopher player to record a pure hat trick since the 2009-10 season. Senior Kelly Seeler had the assist, marking the 50th point of Seeler's career. Kessel's third goal gave Minnesota a 6-0 lead.
The Gophers went into the second intermission with a 7-0 lead over the Huskies after freshman Meghan Lorence got her second career goal, her first of the game, with 6:06 remaining in the period. Davis and freshman Rachel Ramsey were credited with assists on Lorence's goal.
With a comfortable 7-0 lead heading into the final period, coach Brad Frost gave starting goalie Noora Raty some rest and played freshman goalie Shyler Sletta in the third period, marking the first game action of her young career. Sletta stopped all three shots she faced in the game.
Minnesota recorded no penalties in the second period, but gave St. Cloud State three power play chances in the third. Once again, the Gophers played down two skaters for over one and a half minutes, this time with Lorence and Seeler sitting in the penalty box, but Minnesota's penalty kill kept the Huskies scoreless.
In the final minutes of the game, sophomore Bethany Brausen tallied her first goal of the season, assisted by senior Nikki Ludwigson. The assist was Ludwigson's first this season. Brausen's goal gave Minnesota the 8-0 lead.
Once again, Minnesota out shot St. Cloud State, with the final tally at 50-11 in favor of the Gophers. On the weekend, the Gophers had a 109-26 advantage in shots.
Noora Raty recorded her fourth win of the season as Minnesota's starting goalie. Raty has allowed only one goal in four games this season.
Next weekend, the Gophers face a tough opponents in No. 1 Wisconsin with two games in Madison, Wis. Friday's game will begin at 7:00 p.m. while Sunday's game will start at 2:00 p.m. Live audio for both games will be available on gophersports.com.