Gophers fail to finish and Penn State gets back on track

Five B1G teams were in action this weekend with Wisconsin taking the weekend off. Here’s how the games played out:

  • Minnesota split a home-and-home series against Minnesota State with each team winning its road game
  • Ohio State swept Canisius at home
  • Penn State swept Sacred Heart at home
  • Michigan defeated Niagara on Friday
  • Michigan State was defeated by Boston College on Friday

And here are three things I saw this weekend:

1. Gophers fail to finish

After scoring some opportunistic goals on Friday in Mankato, Minnesota was three and a half minutes away from a great weekend on Saturday night.

Then Minnesota State’s offense woke from its slumber.

The Mavericks scored twice with the goaltender pulled to tie the game and Teddy Blueger netted the game-winner in overtime.

The loss proved that the young Gophers team still has some room to grow. There have been positive moments, like Friday’s win along with last week’s road win at Notre Dame, but this team is far from hitting its stride.

I do believe that the Gophers will be a tough team to deal with when the conference schedule rolls around and the underclassmen that are being asked to step into big roles are more comfortable. Eric Schierhorn also has the looks of a goaltender that can steal a couple games.

2. Penn State gets back on track

Any doubts that may have come with last week’s tie against Niagara may have been put to rest this weekend by Penn State. The Nittany Lions were able to pile up a bunch of goals on Friday night and then held on for a close victory on Saturday.

The goals against for Penn State this weekend is also a positive, you’re going to have a chance to win a lot of games if you only give up two goals per game.

3. Michigan State drops a heart breaker

I don’t like moral victories at all, but Michigan State could take a few positive points away from Friday’s road loss at Boston College.

The Spartans didn’t fold when BC extended its lead to 4-1 in the third period, and rattled off three goals in a row to tie the game with a little less than six minutes remaining. The Eagles scored the game winner with two minutes left and added and empty netter.

We will learn a lot about Michigan State the next two weekends when it plays a tough Michigan Tech team and a tougher North Dakota squad.