Grand Forks, N.D. - Thursday evening's match up against the top-ranked Minnesota Gophers did not produce the kind of results that the University of North Dakota women's hockey hoped for. North Dakota suffered a 5-1 loss to the reigning national champions. UND was never able to surmount the three-goal first period deficit.
Friday was another story when North Dakota snapped the Gopher's 12-game winning streak that dated back to the Western Collegiate Hockey Conference's Final Face-Off tournament.
"There are so many times they've smacked us around and we've been able to respond the next day, play well and shake it off," head coach Brian Idalski said.
North Dakota was able to hold the Gopher's off for a 4-3 win in front of a crowd of 3,361 at Ralph Engelstad Arena. The team performed 55 minutes of the game without Tanja Eisenschmid who received a five-minute major and game misconduct early in the first period. UND was able to weather the storm holding the Gophers to only two shots on goal during the advantage.
Minnesota's Captain Hannah Brandt opened up the scoring shortly after North Dakota killed a penalty with 3:20 remaining in the first period.
North Dakota's Amy Menke hit back a little over a minute into the second period on a gritty play with traffic around the Gopher net. After that, UND didn't trail again.
Idalski's adjustment for game two was to put Menke and senior, forward Meghan Dufault on the same line. That change paid off.
“He told us if he’s putting us together, we have to produce multiple points,” Menke said. Before the end of the night, Menke and Dufault each tallied two goals a piece.
Dufault's goals coming only nine seconds apart with about six minutes remaining in the second.
During the third period, Menke tacked on her second goal of the evening. North Dakota held a two-goal lead with less than four minutes remaining in the frame. When trailing, the Gophers, have almost always found a way to turn the game around in their favor.
North Dakota was able to hold the one-goal lead and as the seconds ticketed down, the Kelly green and white fanbase counted down with it.
UND will have a bye week before hosting Ohio State Nov. 14-15. OSU is 4-4-0 and will face Bemidji State this weekend.
Note: North Dakota was without Halli Krzyzaniak due to her participation in the Four Nations Cup.
You can watch the recap video from Friday's game at UNDSports.com - including Dufault's back-to-back goals.
UND Sports game-day story
Grand Forks Herald - UND beats No. 1-ranked Minnesota