The Gophers lifted weights at 6:30, 7 a.m. Monday despite not getting back until well into the day on Sunday from East Lansing, Mich.
"When you don't get back until mid-afternoon on Sunday, it doesn't feel like you had that day off," Gophers coach Don Lucia said on Monday during his weekly radio show on 1500ESPN.. The Gophers lost 4-3 on Friday to the Spartans and then tied them 4-4 on Saturday.
The players only had a short, 50-minute practice on Monday. "We just wanted to flush their legs out," Lucia said. "We will get our work done on Tuesday and Wednesday of this week."
He said the Gophers kept pressing and pushing in the third period of Saturday's 4-4 tie with Michigan State even though some of his top-end players were tired
"Even in the overtime, the guys were tired," Lucia said. "We got caught out there on one of their goals on Saturday night. That line, four of the five guys, were on the ice for 2 minutes and 8 seconds.They were dead on one goal in the second period.
"We chipped it out, but we couldn't get it over the red line. They changed and they were right back in on us. I said, 'This must be a record.' So the next time, be like you are on the penalty kill. Clog up between the dots, get some energy and wait for them to come back on you."
The goal Lucia was referring to was scored by MSU defenseman Matt Crandell of St. Cloud at 14:27 of the second period. It gave the Spartans a 31 lead. On the ice for the Gophers were their top line of Kyle Rau, Nick Bjugstad and Zach Budish and defensemen Ben Marshall and Mark Alt.