Men’s hockey: Gophers win season opener 6-0

by Nate Gotlieb

The Gophers lost five members of last year’s junior class to the NHL. But this season’s junior class carried the team to a season-opening win Friday night.

Juniors Kyle Rau, Seth Ambroz and Sam Warning scored the team's first three goals, as the No. 5 Gophers beat Mercyhurst 6-0 in the opening round of the Ice Breaker Tournament at Mariucci Arena.

Rau, a pre-season all-American, scored the first goal on a power play late in the first period, tapping in a shot deflected wide of the net.

Minnesota proceeded to dominate the second period, scoring three goals and outshooting Mercyhurst 20-5.

Ambroz scored an unassisted goal early in the second, tapping the puck off the skate of a Mercyhurst defenseman and into the net. Warner scored midway through the period, and freshman Justin Kloos added his first-career goal about five minutes later.

Sophomore defenseman Mike Reilly added the team's fifth goal with 8:50 remaining in the third period, and freshman Michael Brodzinski flicked in a wrist shot with less than two minutes remaining.

The Gophers outshot Mercyhurst 48-24, including 34-13 after two periods.

Minnesota will face New Hampshire in the tournament championship at 7 p.m. Saturday at Mariucci. The No. 13 Wildcats beat Clarkson 4-1 on Friday afternoon.