The under-18 national team is now 5-6-1 overall after its 2-2 overtime tie with the Gophers on Friday at Mariucci.
It is only 0-4-2 against college teams, tying with Notre Dame 1-1 and the Gophers, losing to Wisconsin 5-0, North Dakota 6-4, Bemidji State 4-3 and Cornell 6-2.
Wonder if Wisconsin coach Mike Eaves sent a thank you card to the national team. He should have. It has allowed suspended Badgers freshman Nic Kerdiles a chance to play this weekend.
Kerdiles, out 10 games with the Badgers for violating amateur rules, skated against the Gophers on Friday. He had three shots on goal but was a minus-1. Nice way to serve an NCAA suspension, playing at Mariucci with the team he played for last season against another WCHA team.
Otherwise, Kerdiles would have been in Madison while the Badgers were playing at Minnesota Duluth this weekend.
Vinni Letteiri and Tyler Motte scored goals for the U18 U.S. team in the first period. Lettieri was a plus-2 for the game and had four shots. Only one other player, Will Butcher, was a plus-2. Motte led his team in shots on goal with six.
Tom Serratore and Nick Bjugstad had goals for the 'U' in the middle period. The three assists on the two goals went to Christian Horn, Justin Holl and Nate Condon.
The Gophers outshot the U.S. team 41-29, but really had a big shot advantage in only the second period, 20-5. In the first, the U had a 10-9 edge and 5-4 in overtime, while the U.S. team outshot the Gophers 11-5 in the third period.
On the power play, the Gophers were 1 for 5 with 12 shots, the U.S. team 0 for 4 with six shots.
Penalties: U.S. team six for 23 minutes, the Gophers five for 10 minutes.
The Gophers did well in the circles, too, winning 44 of 65 face-offs. Leading the way for the U were its top three centers,. Erik Haula was 13-6 on face-offs, Bjugstad 10-5 and Travis Boyd 7-3.