College Hockey:
No. 1 Minnesota takes advantage of breakdowns, routs No. 5 Boston College

MINNEAPOLIS — Minnesota got goals from six different players for the third time in six games this season, and the top-ranked Gophers rode a fast start to a 6-1 victory over No. 5 Boston College on Sunday.

“Our breakdowns were really taken advantage of by the Gophers,” Boston College coach Jerry York said.

Said Gophers coach Don Lucia: “They went in. They probably had the same number of chances in the first. Adam [Wilcox] made a couple great saves.”

Nate Condon and Seth Ambroz each had a goal and an assist, while Sam Warning and Justin Kloos each had a pair of assists for Minnesota (5-0-1).

Much like in Friday’s 3-3 tie with the Eagles (2-2-1), the Gophers started fast. On Sunday, they poured in four goals on their first seven shots. But unlike Friday, BC simply did not have the answer for the Gophers’ early explosion.

“It started out great for us, obviously, when you score four goals in the first period,” Lucia said. “Our defense did a great job all weekend long. Really got involved offensively. Nice plays off the rush to score some goals.”

Condon open the scoring at 4:14 of the first, finishing off a two-on-one break with a backhand shot that trickled through Brian Billett’s pads.

The Gophers made it 2-0 just 56 seconds later when Ambroz cleaned up a rebound of a long shot by Christian Isackson from the boards just inside the left blue line. Ambroz was left all alone out front and lifted the rebound over Billett.

Mike Reilly made it 3-0, picking up the puck at the right blue line and skating to the top of the right circle then across the zone before firing a shot into the high far corner of the net.

The Gophers went five minutes without another shot on goal before Brady Skjei also found the far upper corner of the net on a wrist shot from between the circles.

“When you looked at the game, the four-goal first period by Minnesota was clearly the catalyst for the game,” York said. “It’s like five chances they had in that period, but the chances were unbelievable chances. There was absolutely no chance for Billett.”

The Eagles started stronger in the second period. They held the puck deep in the Gophers’ zone for long stretches, taking advantage of the long change to apply pressure.

That pressure helped BC get on the board at 6:02 on a one-timer in close by Evan Richardson during a delayed penalty. The Eagles failed to convert on the subsequent power play.

The Gophers added goals by Michael Brodzinski and Jake Bischoff in the third period to round out the scoring.

“We have played some good teams but I think this [Minnesota] is the best team,” York said.

The teams tied in shots during every period — 32 each for the game — but Minnesota had a significant advantage in quality shots.

“I think the game was closer than the score,” Lucia said. “I think Adam made a couple real timely saves during the course of the game to keep the lead were we had it.”

“We knew they were a team that could score in bunches,” Reilly said. “We wanted to keep the foot on the gas and we got the fourth one.”

Minnesota also got goals from six different players in a 6-0 win over Mercyhurst on Oct. 11 and a 6-3 win at Bemidji State on Oct. 18.

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