Men’s Hockey: Nittany Lions Sweep Badgers, Keep Rolling

Story posted January 17, 2016 in Sports, CommRadio by Bria Donnelly

After splitting the series against Minnesota last weekend, the Penn State men’s hockey team was able to leave Pegula this weekend with a sweep over the Wisconsin Badgers.

Friday night’s contest was back and forth, ultimately getting pushed into overtime, but it only took David Goodwin 44 seconds to give the Nittany Lions the win. Saturday night, Penn State allowed only one Wisconsin goal and put four away to pick up the sweep and move to 5-1 in the Big Ten.

“Fantastic to have the Roar Zone back,” said head coach Guy Gadowsky. “They were huge.”

For the first time this season, Matthew Skoff saw back-to-back starts after being in net last Saturday against Minnesota and starting on Friday night.

Friday night saw everything you could want out of a Big Ten Conference game – fast pace and physical play. Both teams came out flying and did not shy away from laying some big hits.

The only goal of the first period came 12 minutes in after Wisconsin’s Jake Linhart was able to capitalize on a Vince Pedrie penalty and give the Badgers the 1-0 lead.

The period ended with five penalties between the two teams, all of them for either roughing or interference.

The second period was all Nittany Lions, allowing the Badgers only three shots on net and getting 24 off on the freshman net minder Matt Jurusik, just one shot shy of a Penn State record for a period. Tommy Olczyk tied the game up midway through the second after a beautiful outlet pass from Luke Juha down the right side of the ice and beat Jurusik blocker side.

With only 12 seconds left to play in the second and Pedrie in the box, Dylan Richard picked off a pass in the neutral zone and took an eerily similar path as Olczyk to record his first shorthanded goal of the season and give Penn State the lead heading into the last 20 minutes of play.

Wisconsin was able to tie the game up early in the third thanks to Luke Kunin. Andrew Sturtz gave the Nittany Lions back the lead with six minutes left to play, but three minutes later, Linhart scored for the Badgers again to push the game into overtime.

Only 44 seconds into the overtime period, David Goodwin did exactly what his teammates Olczyk and Richard did and beat Jurusik blocker side to give the Nittany Lions the overtime win.

Matt Jurusik finished the game with 54 saves for the Badgers, well above his season high 40 saves.

“He gave us a chance, he gave us a chance to hang around,” said Wisconsin head coach Mike Eaves. “He’s a fine young goaltender.”

Eamon McAdam got the call on Saturday night and finished the game with a .975 save percentage. He led the Big Ten with a .927 save percentage before hand. McAdam also finished the game with an assist.

Game two saw just as much physical play between the two teams. The first period ended with Wisconsin ahead in shots 13-8, but Penn State up 2-0 thanks to goals from Curtis Loik and Sturtz.

The lone goal of the second period was a shorthanded goal and came of the stick of Wisconsin’s Luke Kunin to pull the Badgers within one heading to the final period.

That would be as close as Wisconsin would get after allowing two more Penn State in the third period. Both goals came from Eric Scheid, who’s father passed away last year and had played hockey for the Badgers.

“Anytime you score goals, it’s going to be great, but obviously it’s a little special place in my heart for Wisconsin,” said Scheid. “It was nice to have my mom here this weekend to see it and it was overall just a great weekend for us.”

Penn State now leads the series 7-6 and has won the last six games. .

The Nittany Lions will travel to Columbus, Ohio next weekend to take on the Ohio State Buckeyes. Penn State returns to Pegula on January 28th to face off against the University of Michigan.

Bria Donnelly is a sophomore majoring in broadcast journalism. To contact her, email bmd5311@psu.edu.