Minnesota began Friday’s game believing the bounces would be going the way of the home team with an opening-shift lead that came from a shot from behind the Wisconsin goal line. The Gophers ended the night getting many more over the remaining 59 minutes that went any other way but inside the net.
Playing from behind and trying to get yet another come-from-behind win, Minnesota’s latest attempt was one comeback too many.
Despite a third-period rush and 38 total shots on net, the Gophers, who came from two goals or more down in three of the past four games, came up short in a 3-2 loss at Mariucci Arena.
“We lost to a good team tonight. It was a hard-fought game,” said Minnesota coach Don Lucia. “Now our goal is to try and win tomorrow.”
Freshman goaltender Jack Berry made 36 saves for Wisconsin, which bookended a pair of Vinni Lettieri goals Friday with three in the second period on six shots.
Whether coming out of net to stop a Ryan Norman rush, stopping a Lettieri partial breakaway, or being in position for a last minute chance by Tyler Sheehy, his play helped the Badgers tie Minnesota for first place in the Big Ten standings. Each team has 33 points with five games to go in the regular season.
Lettieri needed 28 seconds to make a heads-up play for his 16th goal of the season. The opening minute goal, which Lettieri said was a planned shot from the senior as he noticed Berry skating backward into position, bounced off of the Wisconsin goaltender and…