MINNEAPOLIS — The Golden Gopher women’s hockey team, ranked No. 4, is aiming to maintain their undefeated streak with a mid-week game against the St. Cloud State Huskies. The Gophers will raise a banner to commemorate their 2022-23 WCHA Final Faceoff Championship during their home opener at Ridder Arena on Tuesday, Oct. 17 at 7:00 p.m. CT.
Raising a Banner
The Gophers will proudly hang their 2022-23 WCHA Final Faceoff Championship banner in Ridder Arena approximately 15 minutes before the 7:00 p.m. puck drop. Last season, the Maroon and Gold clinched their eighth WCHA Tournament Championship with a 30-6-3 record and a Frozen Four appearance before succumbing to Wisconsin.
Scouting the Huskies
St. Cloud State has started the 2022-23 season strongly, winning five out of their first six games and securing two WCHA victories. CC Bowlby has been the leading scorer for the Huskies, netting four goals in her first six games. Bowlby currently tops St. Cloud State’s scoring charts with six points. Emma Gentry has also contributed with three goals and one assist. Goaltender Sanni Ahola has achieved shutouts in all the games she has played this season, leaving Union, Mercyhurst, and Bemidji State scoreless.
The Maroon and Gold have witnessed the impact of several players in the first two series of the season. Redshirt junior Abbey Murphy has been leading the scoring charge, scoring seven goals in four games. Junior Ella Huber has accumulated seven points in the first four games (3 goals, 4 assists). Freshmen Ava Lindsay and Emma Kreisz have each scored one goal in their debut season as Gophers, while also playing significant minutes.
Goaltenders Skylar Vetter and Lucy Morgan have only allowed one goal this season. Vetter recorded a shutout on Oct. 6 with 17 saves, while Morgan achieved her first shutout as a Gopher against St. Thomas on Oct. 14 with 16 saves.
Captains Leading the Way
Junior Peyton Hemp has been named team captain for the first time this fall, with Madeline Wethington, Abbey Murphy, and Ella Huber serving as assistant captains, also for the first time. All three Gopher leaders have made significant contributions so far in the 2022-23 season, with Murphy scoring seven goals, Huber registering seven points, Hemp scoring once and assisting once, and M. Wethington scoring one goal and assisting three goals.
Maroon and Gold Firsts
Freshman Ava Lindsay scored a goal in just her second collegiate game against RIT on Oct. 7. Fellow freshman Emma Kreisz, along with Audrey Wethington, assisted Lindsay in that play. Kreisz also scored her first collegiate goal against St. Thomas on Oct. 14. In the same game, graduate transfer Lucy Morgan achieved her first shutout as a Gopher, stopping 16 shots from the Tommies.
Scoring Milestones on the Horizon
After accumulating 11 points in the first four games, Abbey Murphy now stands at 71 career points (40 goals, 31 assists) and is on track to reach the century mark. Madeline Wethington has also made progress towards her 100 career points, scoring one goal and providing three assists this season, bringing her total to 81 career points (23 goals, 58 assists). Peyton Hemp currently has 62 career points (29 goals, 33 assists) after the Gophers’ first four games in 2022-23.
Quest for Eighth National Title
Minnesota has already won seven national championships (2000, 2004, 2005, 2012, 2013, 2015, and 2016) and is now seeking their historic eighth national crown in 2023-24.