MINNEAPOLIS — Minnesota got offensive contributions from nine different players in defeating visiting Minnesota State 4-1.
Rachel Ramsey led the scoring with a goal and an assist and centers Sarah Davis and Kelly Terry each had two helpers. Kate Schipper, Brook Garzone, and Dani Cameranesi had the other goals for the Gophers (9-0-0, 7-0-0 WCHA), while Tracy McCann notched the lone MSU goal.
Amanda Leveille made 13 stops in picking up her ninth win of the season in what was just the team’s third game on home ice.
“To finally come back at home, I think you see the excitement on our player’s faces and their legs,” Minnesota coach Brad Frost said.
Senior Danielle Butters of the Mavericks (3-6-0, 0-5-0 WCHA) was kept considerably busier on the other end of the ice, finishing with 48 saves.
“She played fantastic tonight,” Ramsey said. “I think we’ve got to the get puck up a little more. Her pads are always down.”
“She’s a good goalie,” MSU assistant coach Brett Bruininks said. “She keeps us in a lot of games. She’s athletic, she’s agile, she’s big and she’s smart.”
Minnesota took a two-goal lead in the second period on a couple of goals with players crashing the net.
“They shoot the puck well and they crash the net well and you can rely on a goalie [only] so much,” Bruininks said.
Ramsey scored a power-play goal at 12:32 that was originally waved off when the referee ruled the puck had been kicked into the net, but the call was overturned on review.
“I tried to get a stick on it,” the junior defenseman said. “It was really me stopping trying to get it to myself. I don’t know if I got a stick on it or not, but we’ll take it. Not often I find myself down on the goal line, so I lucked out there.”
That proved to be the game-winner. Davis had the first assist on the play, as she did on the Gopher’s next goal four minutes later. Garzone, filling in for an injured Meghan Lorence, got wood on a puck in front an poked it home.
“We just found out a couple days ago that Meghan wasn’t going to be able to play and Brook has one practice at forward and comes out and plays really well and gets rewarded with that goal,” Frost said.
The Gophers completed the scoring with another power-play goal at 8:52 of the third period. Hannah Brandt found Cameranesi alone on the weak-side post. Her team finished two of five with the advantage, converting its final two chances.
“They killed the first couple off there in the first and did a really good job with that, but we were able to bang a couple home there in the second and third,” Frost said.
MSU was able to go into the first intermission even despite having been outshot 21-4 in the frame.
Schipper picked up a lose puck and wrapped it around a sprawled Butters and into the net for a 1-0 Minnesota lead after nearly 16 minutes had elapsed.
“We haven’t been starting the way we wanted to, so getting the first goal is a big deal,” Schipper said.
The Mavericks retaliated with two seconds left in the period on a four-on-three power play. A rebound snuck behind Leveille and McCann put it away with assists from Nicole Germaine and Shelby Moteyunas.
“It’s an intimidating environment that a lot of kids aren’t used to,” Bruininks said. “Got a lot of young kids on the team, but I think they responded very well once they settled down and started playing. They came out in the second period and established themselves a little better.”
Saturday afternoon, the Mavericks get back in their own environment as the teams meet in All-Seasons Arena in Mankato on the back end of a home-and-home series.
“It’s just a matter of establishing ourselves quickly, right off the faceoff,” Bruininks said.
For the Gophers, it’s yet another road game in the young season.
“We know it’s going to be a lot tougher,” Frost said. “We’ve got to head down to that place in the morning and hopefully, have the same jump.”