Gophers look to regain fresh legs

Minnesota will play Princeton on Saturday and Sunday on the road.

by Grant Donald

Sophomore Dani Cameranesi is coming off an excellent extended weekend. The Gophers’ leading goalscorer netted five goals in three games.

However, the first thing she said after Monday’s victory over St. Cloud State was how tired her legs were after playing three games in four days.

“My legs were a little dead today,” Cameranesi said. “I probably could have had a little better preparation over the weekend.”

The road doesn’t get any easier for Cameranesi and the Gophers as the team travels to the East Coast to play Princeton. After Sunday’s series finale, Minnesota will have played five games over the course of nine days.

“We are going to take [Tuesday] off from practice,” head coach Brad Frost said. “I think Princeton actually plays [Tuesday] night, so they will have the same amount of rest.”

To go along with the short turnaround, Frost said after Monday’s game that the team would be without sophomore forward Kate Flug for the remainder of the season.

While depth at the forward position took a hit with Flug’s injury, Minnesota’s production has not skipped a beat after tallying 14 goals during the long weekend.

“I think my line has a few things to work on before this upcoming weekend,” Cameranesi said. “But our chemistry has been good all season, and I think that helped out a lot this weekend.”

While Cameranesi’s line played well, Frost said Minnesota’s second line of freshman Kelly Pannek and seniors Rachael Bona and Meghan Lorence will be looking to continue its momentum against Princeton this weekend.

“In particular the first period, [those three] really set the tone for our team,” Frost said. “Bona was flying, Lorence was flying and then Pannek finally got the goal, which took some weight off the shoulders of everyone.”

Even with the spike in recent production, Minnesota will still have to battle fatigue when it travels to New Jersey this weekend.

“My legs are pretty shot,” senior Rachel Ramsey said after Monday’s game. “I think by the time we will get out there, we will be good to go.”

Luckily for the Gophers, this weekend’s series will take place on Saturday and Sunday instead of the traditional Friday and Saturday games.

“With the games being on Saturday and Sunday, it will be nice to have Thanksgiving to ourselves,” Ramsey said. “We take off early Friday morning so we will have time to get acclimated out there, and I think our legs will be just fine.”