Robert Morris steals one from Minnesota in season opener

womens hockey vs. robert morris. Gophers 7-1

Ali Haupt

womens hockey vs. robert morris. Gophers 7-1

The University of Minnesota womenâÄôs hockey team received a wake-up call courtesy of Robert Morris. The Gophers suffered a 3-2 loss against the Colonials but bounced back to win 7-1 on Saturday night. Coach Brad Frost said the 11 penalties taken on Friday night were frustrating to watch. âÄúThere was just selfish play all over tonight,âÄù Frost said. âÄúTo have power plays negated by retaliatory penalties or offensive zone penalties just were not smart hockey plays at all.âÄù Frost said the Gophers couldnâÄôt take advantage of the eight power plays because of Robert MorrisâÄô strong defense and senior goaltender Brianne McLaughlin. âÄúTheir goalie was their best penalty killer out there tonight,âÄù Frost said. After the first period, the Gophers were down 2-0. Senior captain Melanie Gagnon said the team didnâÄôt come out prepared, and faced a hot goalie. âÄúWe dug ourselves a hole and by the time we tried to come back we hit a wall,âÄù Gagnon said. Minnesota started the second period with three consecutive penalties and the Colonials scored their second power play goal to make the score 3-0. Twenty-two seconds later, a scrum in front left the Gophers with a 5-4 advantage . Using a cycling power-play, first-year Anne Schleper scored her first goal with the Gophers to bring the score to 3-1. Schleper said her goal was exciting, but she hoped it would get her team going. âÄúPersonally, I think it just kind of sets a tone for myself,âÄù she said. âÄúFrom there I was hoping it would boost up the team a little bit more.âÄù The Gophers started to pick the pace up after the goal, but it was too little, too late, Frost said. The Gophers pulled their goalie after a Robert Morris penalty to gain a 6-4 advantage. The tactic worked, as sophomore Emily West scored for Minnesota to bring the game to 3-2. The Gophers kept their net open and netted a goal but referees waived it off. Schleper said the team needed to come out prepared. âÄúNo one likes losing,âÄù Schleper said. âÄúWe have to come with more of an attitude of getting it done.âÄù To put some intensity in to the team, Frost changed up the lines. By dressing 13 forwards and five defensemen, junior Brittany Francis moved up to the first line and junior Chelsey Jones took her spot on the third line. âÄúI think [lines] were wanting and needing a spark after last night,âÄù he said. Even with the line changes, the first period looked similar to FridayâÄôs game. With a five-on-three advantage, Robert Morris scored first. The Gophers picked up the pace and scored two quick goals , one by sophomore Jen Schoullis and the other from senior captain Gigi Marvin , whose first goal of the season was unassisted and shorthanded, making the score 2-1. The Gophers didnâÄôt hold back the rest of the game. First-year Sarah Erickson tallied her first career goal before Gagnon wound up on the power play and found the net, for her first goal this season, to make the score 4-1. Francis scored her first of the season right off the center-ice face-off six seconds after Marvin tallied her second of the night. Erickson capped off the win with her second of the night to finalize the 7-1 victory. Even with the victory, Frost said his team is taking more penalties than he would like, but is proud of the way they picked themselves up after the loss. Gagnon was also pleased with the way the team came out after FridayâÄôs game. âÄúI think everyone took a deep breath and realized we are a good hockey team and we can play better,âÄù she said. Goalie Rotation Frost continued to play musical chairs with his goalies this weekend. Senior Kim Hanlon started FridayâÄôs game, saw seven shots and let in three goals. Hanlon was replaced with sophomore Jenny Lura five minutes into the second period and faced a total of five shots, letting in one goal. First-year Alyssa Grogan came in for the second and third periods on SaturdayâÄôs game, saw 11 shots and let in no goals. Frost said Hanlon struggled while Lura wasnâÄôt tested a lot, and Grogan played well. Frost is unsure of who will be the goaltender for upcoming games against defending champion Minnesota-Duluth.