Michigan Tech scored two second-period goals and added an empty net marker in the third for a 3-1 victory over #3 Minnesota tonight at Mariucci Arena in front of 9,677 fans. With the win, the Huskies completed their first sweep of the Gophers on the road since 1971!
Minnesota held a 1-0 advantage after the first period of play. The lone goal came off the stick of Tyler Hirsch as the Gophers were on a five-on-three power play. Hirsch’s shot from the left circle deflected off the stick of Jake Wilkens and past Cam Ellsworth. Chris Conner made a great move to get by a defender to get in front of the net with three minutes left in the period, but his shot was stopped by UM goalie Justin Johnson.
Michigan Tech grabbed the lead with a pair of second period goals. The first came as Brandon Schwartz made a blind backhand pass from the side of the net to a waiting John Scott who flipped home his second goal of the season. The time of the marker was 16:37. With the teams skating four-on-four 1:05 later, Clay Wilson rifled a shot wide of the goal and Chris Conner tipped it past Johnson as it came off the end wall. Colin Murphy also drew an assist on the play -- his 30th of the season.
UM came out buzzing in the third period and the puck spent most of the time in the MTU defensive zone. Ellsworth withstood the barrage, however, and Murphy added an empty net goal in the final 30 seconds for the final score of 3-1.
"This was a huge team effort," said second-year head coach Jamie Russell. "I thought our defense played well and Cam did a great job to give us a chance to win."
Ellsworth finished with 37 saves in the game and had 76 on the weekend vs. Minnesota. Schwartz (two assists) and Murphy (goal and assist) each had multiple-point nights.
Michigan Tcch, winner of four of its last five games, will finally return home to the MacInnes Student Ice Arena on Friday (Jan. 28) to open a weekend series with #1 Colorado College. The Huskies haven't played at home since Dec. 4.