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Weekend recap: Gophers sweep Bemidji State

Although Beavers goaltender Brittni Mowat made 92 saves in two games, Minnesota forwards Dani Cameranesi and Kelly Pannek combined for 7 of the Gophers’ 8 goals in 4-0 and 4-1 wins.

After winning a gold medal, Kelly Pannek is back with the Gophers Brad Rempel/Minnesota Athletics

MINNEAPOLIS- One hundred shots on goal by the Gophers resulted in pair of wins and eight total goals against Bemidji State (5-10-1, 3-10-1-0 WCHA).

#2 Minnesota (13-1-2, 11-1-2-2 WCHA) defeated BSU 4-1 Sunday, coming a day after a 4-0 victory. Senior forward Dani Cameranesi scored twice both games. She leads the nation in goals with 18 and now has eight multi-goal games this season. No one else in college hockey has more than four.

Linemate Kelly Pannek, meanwhile, had two goals and two assists in Sunday’s win. Both goals came within a 17 second stretch of the first period bookending the Gophers’ annual Teddy Bear toss.

As important as it was for Minnesota to get the early lead, the two goal cushion put the Gophers exactly where it wanted.

“It’s always fun to see the Teddy Bears come down, but it’s kind of a momentum killer,” said Pannek after Sunday’s game. “You just try not to let it be. That next goal was huge for us. It didn’t let (Bemidji) get back in as they probably would have hoped.”

Beavers senior goaltender Brittni Mowat made 45 saves Sunday to finish with a career-high 92 stops on the weekend. In both games she was heavily tested, however, keeping her team in the game. BSU was down 1-0 on Saturday until the final ten minutes when Pannek, Cameranesi and Kate Schipper put the game out of reach.

“Going into the third period down one we would take that every time coming down here. (Minnesota) made some plays,” said Bemidji State head coach Jim Scanlan following Saturday’s loss. “It doesn’t matter if Britt stands on her head, which she did. If you don’t score, you’re not going to win.”

Madison Hutchinson scored Bemidji State’s only goal of the weekend, coming in the second period of Sunday’s game. The Beavers captain’s fourth goal of the year brought BSU within one, but Cameranesi restored Minnesota’s two-goal lead less than six minutes later.

Sidney Peters played goal for Minnesota and made 18 saves each game.

Potomak, Woken hurt

The Gophers lost a pair of forwards to injury over the weekend.

Freshman Alex Woken left Saturday’s game in the first period with a lower body injury. She didn’t play in Sunday’s win and is considered day-to-day.

Sophomore Sarah Potomak, meanwhile, had to be helped off the ice Sunday after being boarded by Bemidji’s Lauren Miller in the opening seconds of the third period. Miller was assessed a five minute major for boarding. Potomak went straight to the locker room and did not come back.

“It’s not good. She was down for a while so we’ll have to re-evaluate her this week,” said Minnesota head coach Brad Frost.

Potomak is currently tied for third in the nation with 27 points (11G-16A).

“Definitely not something you like to see; especially to one of our best players. It doesn’t matter who it is, it’s not a good play by their team,” said Cameranesi. “We’ll probably have to battle back this week and see how she’s doing coming into next weekend.”

Minnesota travels to #1 Wisconsin next weekend for a two-game series that has major WCHA stakes.


Nathan Wells is a college hockey columnist for SB Nation mostly covering both the University of Minnesota and Big Ten. You can also follow him on Twitter --