"Winning the MacNaughton Cup was huge for us," said senior winger Jake Hansen, who scored two goals in the Gophers' 7-3 victory over Boston University on Saturday in the West Regional semifinals at the Xcel Energy Center. "But we just didn't want to be that senior class to go through the 'U' and not make it to the NCAA. We played hard."
* Freshman Kyle Rau found a loose puck in the crease, behind BU's goalie and put it in for the Gophers' first goal. "More than half of my goals have been from there," he said. "I just look fro the open ice because obviously I am a smaller guy. I will just get knocked down and outmuscled, so I just have to find the open ice around the net. Hopefully I will get a couple like that [Sunday]."
Rau's goal was his 18th of the season.He has a team-high nine on power plays. He also had three assists and four points, both season highs. He was named the first star of the game, Hansen the second star and defenseman Nate Schmidt, who had two assists, the third star.
THE DON SAYS
On playing BU: As soon as the draw came out, when you see Boston University, I think everybody -- our coaches and players -- understand what a great program they have [with] outstanding coaches and player. It made it that much easier to get ready for the game. The guys were obviously hungry to play. ... Any time we got punched, we were able to punch back.
Gophers in NCAA
33 trips, second all-time behind Michigan's 35
51-33 record, 51 is first among most wins
5-3 record vs. Boston University
Attendance at the first session at three regionals:
West, St. Paul: 9,386
East, Bridgeport, Conn. 5,090
Midwest, Green Bay, Wis., 3,465
Northeast, Worcester, Mass., unavailable