Minnesota earns two wins on road

The Gophers beat rival Wisconsin in double overtime and beat Purdue.

Minnesota midfielder Katie Thyken fights for the ball against Louisiana State on Sept. 6.

Chelsea Gortmaker

Minnesota midfielder Katie Thyken fights for the ball against Louisiana State on Sept. 6.

Jace Frederick

A lack of consistency has plagued the Gophers all year. But not this weekend.

Minnesota swept a pair of conference road matches, following up its 1-0 double-overtime win over Wisconsin in Madison, Wis., on Thursday with a 2-1 victory over Purdue in West Lafayette, Ind., on Sunday.

“I am very proud of our girls for sweeping our final road weekend of the regular season,” Gophers head coach Stefanie Golan said. “It’s never easy to do, but especially in the Big Ten down the stretch.”

The wins moved the Gophers (11-5-2, 4-4-2) into a fifth-place tie in the Big Ten.

The Gophers jumped on the Boilermakers right away Sunday. Junior midfielder Katie Thyken finished a cross from freshman forward Simone Kolander for a first-minute score.

Kolander and Thyken connected again in the 57th minute to give the Gophers a 2-0 lead and all but wrap up the win.

Thyken’s two goals give her seven this season, tying her 2012 mark.

Freshman keeper Tarah Hobbs finished the match with 12 saves and held the Boilermakers scoreless until the 84th minute.

“Tarah made a couple of key saves,” Golan said.

Hobbs had already completed a shutout earlier in the weekend, collecting 10 saves in the double-overtime victory over the Badgers. It was her fourth shutout of the season.

Sophomore forward Haley Helverson’s goal in the 109th minute made the difference in the 1-0 win. The Gophers won despite being outshot 32-17.

“Wisconsin is a good team, and to be able to grind out a win like that on the road is such a great reward for our girls,” Golan said. “We rose to the occasion and found a way to win.”

The Gophers wrap up their Big Ten regular season slate against Illinois at home on Thursday.