MADISON, Wis. — Third-ranked Minnesota Duluth scored a pair of power play goals in the opening 20 minutes on Friday, but also saw a pair of defensemen get tossed during the first period en route to getting routed 6-2 in a nonconference game at the hands of No. 17 Wisconsin at Kohl Center in Madison.
It was a result Bulldogs coach Scott Sandelin said his team deserved.
“We went into the game and one of the big things we talked about was discipline. You got to be disciplined,” Sandelin said. “We got short a couple guys and just didn’t play the game the right way. They took advantage of that like good teams do.
“The game slowly got away from us because we didn’t want to do the right things. We started cheating on the rink and didn’t generate much offense.”
The Bulldogs (1-2) and Badgers (2-1) met on Friday for the first time since 2013, when they went their separate ways to new leagues — UMD to the NCHC and Wisconsin to the Big Ten.
The rivals for 44 years in the WCHA will meet again at 7 p.m. Saturday in Madison, and the Bulldogs — who finished the series opener with five defensemen after dressing seven — hope to have their full allotment of blue liners for more than just the 2 minutes and 32 seconds on Friday.
Junior Scott Perunovich was the first to go in the opening minutes. He was ejected for face masking after he ripped loose the mask of Badgers junior wing Sean Dhooghe during an after-the-whistle scrum in front of the Wisconsin net.
Sophomore Hunter Lellig was thrown out of the game 16 minutes in for checking from behind.
UMD senior defenseman and co-captain Nick Wolff said killing two majors in a period can wear on a team, but even more so when the two majors are on defensemen.
“You don’t have a hockey team when you have to kill off two major penalties,” Wolff said. “I thought our penalty kill did a pretty good job on those two kills … but it kills the momentum of the game. You have to give credit to their highly-skilled forwards.”
Perunovich’s major actually led to a Bulldogs 4-on-3 power play as Dhooghe wound up in the penalty box for roughing after the whistle along with junior teammate Dylan Holloway. The Bulldogs cashed in on the advantage before the Badgers’ major power play kicked in as sophomore center Jackson Cates deflected through a pass by junior wing Nick Swaney.
The Bulldogs went on to kill the rest of Perunovich’s major, and got a power play goal from Swaney just before the 14-minute mark to go ahead 2-1
However, the Badgers tied the game during the Lellig major thanks to another UMD penalty by another UMD defenseman just 20 seconds into the 5-minute power play. Junior Louie Roehl covered the puck in the crease during the Lellig major, resulting in a delay of game penalty and a 5-on-3 power play goal by Badgers junior wing Linus Weissbach.
Freshman wing Owen Lindmark scored the go-ahead goal for the Badgers nearly six minutes into the second period and junior wing Tarek Baker put the Bulldogs down 4-2 in the opening five minutes of the third.
Lindmark added a second goal midway through the third, this one shorthanded. Badgers freshman forward Cole Caufield also scored twice on Friday to bring his season total to six, striking 53 seconds in and at the 12-minute mark of the third.
“Tonight's a game where we were playing a team that's a championship team for a reason,” Badgers coach Tony Granato said. “They were going to scratch and claw to find a way to get back into it, but we didn't give them a whole lot of opportunities to do that because as the game went on we played really, really smart. And for a young team, that's exciting to see.”
Bulldogs sophomore wing Tanner Laderoute left Friday’s game in the third period with an apparent left leg injury after going hard into the end boards behind the Badgers’ net. He had to be helped off the ice and to the UMD locker room. He did not return.
Freshman wing Quinn missed Friday’s game with an upper body injury. Junior wing Koby Bender returned to the Bulldogs lineup after missing last weekend’s series against UMass-Lowell. He was originally projected to miss 3-4 weeks with an upper body injury after going down in the exhibition against Alberta on Oct. 5.
Minnesota Duluth 2-0-0—2
First period — 1. UW, Cole Caufield 5 (Linus Weissbach, Alex Turcotte), 0:53; 2. UMD, Jackson Cates 1 (Nick Swaney, Dylan Samberg), 2:55 (pp); 3. UMD, Swaney 2 (Samberg, Kobe Roth), 13:48 (pp); 4. UW, Weissbach 1 (Turcotte, Wyatt Kalynuk), 17:19 (pp). Penalties — Scott Perunovich, UMD (face masking and game misconduct), 2:32; Dylan Halloway, UW (roughing), 2:32; Sean Dhooghe, UW (roughing), 2:32; Tarek Baker, UW (hooking), 13:30; Hunter Lellig, UMD (checking from behind major and game misconduct), 16:03; Louie Roehl, UMD (delay of game), 16:23.
Second period — 5. UW, Owen Lindmark 2 (Ty Pelton-Byce, Jesper Peltonen), 5:56. Penalties — Jade Miller, UMD (high sticking), 19:56.
Third period — 6. UW, Baker 1 (Holloway, Dhooghe), 4:19; 7. UW, Lindmark 3 (Roman Ahcan), 10:!4 (sh); 8. UW, Caufield 6 (Weissbach, Turcotte), 12:00. Penalties — Dhooghe, UW (tripping), 6:43; Baker, UW (holding), 8:29.
Shots on goal — UMD 12-9-7—28; UW 14-10-13—37. Goalies — Hunter Shepard, UMD (37 shots-31 saves); Daniel Lebedeff, UW (28-26). Power plays — UMD 2-of-4; UW 1-of-4. Penalties — UMD 6-34; UW 5-10. Referees — Colin Kronforst, Barry Pochmara. Linesmen — Nicholas Bradshaw, Robert Shintani. Att. — 10,410.