Gophers crush UND to reach WCHA championship

Minnesota won 6-0 behind Sarah Davis’ three goals.

Minnesota scores their first goal against North Dakota on Friday at AMSOIL Arena.

Brett Groehler, University of Minnesota Duluth

Minnesota scores their first goal against North Dakota on Friday at AMSOIL Arena.

Samuel Gordon

DULUTH, Minn. — Sarah Davis was the only Gophers player on the active roster that didn’t record a point in last weekend’s sweep of St. Cloud State.

She atoned for it in a huge way on Friday — with a hat trick.

The sophomore center’s three-goal performance helped No. 2 Minnesota destroy No. 5 North Dakota 6-0.

Emily West had two goals two assists and Jen Schoullis chipped in a with a goal. Noora Raty saved 27 shots, recording her ninth shutout this season.

The Gophers will dance with Minnesota-Duluth, who upset top-ranked Wisconsin 3-1, for the WCHA Tournament Championship on Saturday.

“[Sarah] Davis’ and [Emily] West’s line really set the tone for us early,” Minnesota head coach Brad Frost said. “To continue to build a lead and extend a lead against these guys is so critical.”

Kelly Seeler fed West, who lit the lamp 3:21 into the first period to put the Gophers up 1-0. As the period drew to a close, Davis scored her first foal of the game, beating the goalie top-shelf after putting an incredible move on the UND defender.

“[West] made a great play battling for it on the blue line,” Davis said. “It just popped onto my stick, I shoot and it goes in.”

Davis hammered home a rebound four minutes into the second period to put Minnesota up 3-0. Schoullis scored on a makeshift breakaway four minutes later to effectively put the game out of reach.

West scored her second goal of the game on a power play at 12:38, and the 5-0 lead held through the remainder of the period.

“We had some bounces go in our favor,” West said, “You create your own luck and I think we did that throughout the whole night.”

Just 3:26 into the third, Davis scored her third goal from point-blank range, and the Gophers coasted the rest of the way for the win.