Freshman continue to produce for Gophers

Freshman forward Monique Lamoureux  looks to an open sophomore Jen Schoullis  during one of the Gophers’ two wins over Bemidji State over the weekend.

Ashley Goetz

Freshman forward Monique Lamoureux looks to an open sophomore Jen Schoullis during one of the Gophers’ two wins over Bemidji State over the weekend.

First-year players led the Minnesota womenâÄôs hockey team this weekend. The No. 1 Gophers (21-2-1 overall, 16-1-1-1 Western Collegiate Hockey Association) swept Bemidji State (5-17-2, 2-16-0-0) 5-1 on Friday and 11-1 on Saturday. The wins give the Gophers 21 wins this season. This is the 12th year in a row Minnesota has won 20 games, with the most coming in 2004-05 when the Gophers won 36 games. Goal production has been a key in those wins, and 13 of the weekendâÄôs 16 goals came from first-year players Monique Lamoureux, Jocelyne Lamoureux, Sarah Erickson and Kelly Seeler. Monique Lamoureux scored the first two goals in FridayâÄôs game. The first came off a rebound in front of the net and the second came from a pass Jocelyne Lamoureux provided after stick handling through a forest of Bemidji State players. Jocelyne Lamoureux said she was thinking about taking the shot as she headed towards the net but heard her sister calling for the puck. âÄúI heard her yelling off to the side so I threw it over there,âÄù Jocelyne Lamoureux said. âÄúItâÄôs nice she was there. I wouldnâÄôt have had that nice of a shot.âÄù In the second period, two Gophers collided in front of their net, which allowed Bemidji State to score their only goal. A minute later, junior Kelli Blankenship was blanked on a breakaway after she tried a backhand shot. The puck ended up in front of the net where junior Michelle Maunu got the puck and passed to Erickson, who scored on the opportunity. Seeler and Jocelyne Lamoureux completed the scoring with two power-play goals. Coach Brad Frost said it was nice to be back in Minneapolis but his team looked slow in the first period. âÄúWe started extremely slow, but as the game got going, we started playing better later in the first and better in the second,âÄù he said. âÄúIn the third, I thought we kind of coasted home.âÄù Saturday night, the Gophers didnâÄôt waste any time finding the back of the net, as Monique Lamoureux scored 19 seconds into the game to collect her first of three goals and her first collegiate hat trick. Her sister also recorded a hat trick and three assists in her first 10-point weekend. In the second period, with the score 4-1, Erickson netted a backdoor goal for her eighth of the season, and Horton scored her second goal of the night. Seeler also scored her second power play goal of the weekend. Going into the weekend, the Gophers were realistic about their scoring expectations because of Bemidji StateâÄôs goalie, even after scoring 21 goals the weekend before, Frost said. âÄúIt would take more than perimeter shots to beat her,âÄù Frost said. âÄúOnce we started getting some bodies to the net, good things started happening. I donâÄôt think anyone in the locker room thought we were going to be scoring nine to 12 goals a game.âÄù