After a three-goal third period, the Gophers hockey team completed a late-game comeback to lift Mercyhurst 5-3 on Saturday night to sweep their series into the opening season.
They led the Lakers 42-19 on goal shots and scored two goals in powerplay.
The juniors finished it for the Gophers on the score. Bryce Brodzinski scored two goals in the third period, while Ben Meyers (game-winning goal) and Jaxon Nelson collected their first goals this season. College senior transfer Grant Cruikshank registered his first point with the Gophers.
The Gophers will split their second non-conference two-game series next weekend against St. Louis. Cloud State. They play at the 3M Arena in Mariucci on Friday, Oct. 15 at 7 p.m., and will travel to St. Louis. Cloud, Minn., For the second game on Saturday, Oct. 16 at 5 p.m.
Northern Michigan 8, St. Thomas 3: The Tommies had an early 3-2 lead in the second period, but that lead was quickly lost as the Wildcats scored just 3:29 seconds and
went on two add five more goals in the third period. The St. Thomas (0-4) has been eliminated in their first two series in their first season of Division I play.
Freshman Kyler Grundy scored his first two goals in college, while second -year Luke McGregor raised his first goal. Sophomore Kimball Johnson also added two assists to the score.
The Tommies will travel to Sault Ste. Marie, Mich., For their next two-game CCHA series to be held at Lake Superior State on Friday, Oct. 15 at 6:37 p.m., and Saturday, Oct. 16 at 6:07 p.m. in search of their first- first success in the I Division of program history.
Minnesota Duluth 5, Gophers 4: After falling 4-1, the Gophers ’comeback fell in an overtime loss to Minnesota Duluth at Amsoil Arena. Senior Abigail Boreen led with two third-period goals, including a tying goal, and added an assist.
Despite the loss, the Gophers outscored the Bulldogs 35-22. Senior Taylor Heise scored her 40th career goal and added an assist for the Gophers, while senior Emily Oden found the back of the net for her 20th career goal. Freshman Peyton Hemp also had three assists in the game.
The Gophers (1-3) will split their third WCHA two-game series of the season where they will face Minnesota State at Ridder Arena on Friday, Oct. 15 at 6 p.m., and on the road in Mankato, Minn., On Saturday, Oct. 16 at 4 p.m.
Gophers 3, Michigan State 1: After losing their first set on the road to East Lansing, the Gophers went on to win three straight sets to beat the Spartans, 22-25, 25-23, 25-21, 25-21.
Sophomore Jenna Wenaas had a double -double performance after collecting a team high 17 kills, while adding 11 digs, two assists and a service ace. Old Redshirt Stephanie Samedy stood out in her 53rd career double after she posted 11 kills, 12 digs, three service aces and two assists. Redshirt senior Airi Miyabe also posted a career-high 16 kills.
The Gophers will head home to the Maturi Pavilion next week as they arrive at Northwestern on Wednesday, Oct. 13 at 7 p.m. and Indiana on Sunday, Oct. 17 at 2 p.m.
South Dakota State 3, St. Thomas 0: In the sweep of the Tommies ’Jackrabbits, St. Thomas is now 2-15 in Division I play this season and has lost four consecutive games.
The freshmen performed well for St. Louis. Thomas. Lauren Galvin had 10 kills, two digs and one assist. Eva Fitzgerald had 11 assists, two digs and a service ace.
The Tommies will look forward to getting back on track when they return home next week when they host Oral Roberts on Thursday, Oct. 14 at 7 p.m. and Kansas City on Saturday, Oct. 16 at 3 p.m.