series preview: OHIO STATE AT Gophers
8:10 p.m. Friday at TCF Bank Stadium and 5 p.m. Saturday at Mariucci Arena
TV/radio/live stream: BTN on Friday and FSN on Saturday; 1500-AM and BTN2Go.com both nights.
Gophers at a glance: No. 1-ranked Minnesota (15-2-3, 5-0-1-0 Big Ten) faces what feels like another new opponent. It’s been over six years since they’ve played Ohio State. All-time, the Gophers have a 12-1-0 record against their new conference rival. Last weekend against new opponent Penn State, the Gophers picked up their Big Ten’s first road sweep, winning 3-2 and 5-2. Sam Warning and Nate Condon found a spark in the second game on Monday that coach Don Lucia hopes will carry over into this weekend. Warning had two goals, Condon one goal and one assist.
Buckeyes at a glance: Unranked Ohio State (11-6-1, 1-2-1-0) is the third-highest scoring team in college hockey. The Buckeyes enter this weekend’s series averaging 3.83 goals a game. The Gophers are No. 2 in scoring, averaging 3.95 goals. Junior forward Ryan Dzingel had the Big Ten’s first hat trick and an assist last Friday as Ohio State rallied to beat Michigan State 5-3 in Columbus. The Buckeyes tied the Spartans 1-1 the next night, but lost in the ensuing shootout. Ohio State is a big team with plenty of upper classmen that continues to surprise teams despite its instability in goal. Former Minnesota Duluth assistant Steve Rohlik is in his first season as OSU coach.