Gophers Fall to the Luck of the Irish
MANCHESTER, N.H. (GopherSports.com) – The Gopher men's hockey team came up on the short end of a back-and-forth battle on Saturday night, falling to Notre Dame 3-2.
Connor Reilly and Vinni Lettieri scored for the Gophers while Eric Schierhorn made 26 saves in goal for the Maroon & Gold.
The Gophers (23-12-3) opened the day with a two-goal lead starting when Reilly stuffed home his first goal in more than a year to put the Maroon & Gold up by a goal in the first period. The redshirt senior found the back of the net at 2:07 of the opening stanza with an assist from Brent Gates Jr. The goal snapped a 38-game goal drought for Reilly dating to Feb. 13, 2015.
Lettieri added his 19th goal of the year 30 seconds into the second period during a Minnesota power play. The senior put home the goal off a feed from Taylor Cammarata and Leon Bristedt. Minnesota finished the night 1-for-5 on the power play.
The Irish (22-11-5) bounced back though with a pair of quick goals later in the second. Andrew Oglevie scored at 14:39 followed by Anders Bjork’s goal at 15:33. The deciding goal came on a Notre Dame power play in the third period as Bjork scored his second goal of the night at 8:42.
The loss eliminates Minnesota from the NCAA tournament.
Despite the end to the campaign, the 2016-17 season was a success for the Maroon & Gold. Minnesota earned its 37th NCAA tournament bid to set a new NCAA record while the program also set a new NCAA record with its sixth-straight regular-season conference championship.
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