Author’s note: There may be a lack of women’s hockey coverage here on B5Q as the playoffs progress as I cover the NCAA tournament for various national outlets. You can always find my content about women’s college hockey at USCHO.com/women. Please follow me on Twitter for in-game updates, picture and coverage of the Badgers: https://twitter.com/NicoleHaase.
A lot has happened in the last 10 days for the Badgers, so let’s run it down bullet-point-style:
- The Badgers won their third straight WCHA Final Faceoff championship on Sunday, defeating UND 2-1 in the semifinal and UMD 4-1 in the final.
- Ann-Renée Desbiens was named a Patty Kazmaier top-three finalist for the second year in a row. She’s joined by UMD’s Lara Stalder and Clarkson’s Cayler Mercer. The award will be given out March 18 as part of the Frozen Four weekend festivities.
- Sarah Nurse was named WCHA Player of the Week for the second consecutive week. She assisted on both game-winning goals at the WCHA Final Faceoff and had three third-period points in the championship game win over UMD, including a shorthanded goal that landed her on SportsCenter’s Top 10 list that night. From the release: “Over the two weeks of NCAA conference tournaments, Nurse led all national skaters with 11 points, five goals, six assists (matching Pankowski), 1.25 goals per game, 2.75 points per game, three power-play goals (tied), one short-handed goal (tied) and a plus-8 rating. Nurse won both WCHA Offensive Player of the Week awards for the league tournament, giving her four weekly honors for the 2016-17 season and five for her career.”
- The Badgers earned the No. 1 overall seed in the NCAA tournament and will host No. 8 Robert Morris on Saturday.
- Tickets for that NCAA quarterfinal game sold out in about two hours Monday morning. The Badgers even sold standing room-only tickets, meaning the LaBahn Arena will be packed with around 2,400 fans for the game.
- For the first time in awhile, should Wisconsin advance to the Frozen Four, it would not meet another WCHA team until the national championship game. Minnesota and Minnesota-Duluth meet in the quarterfinals, so the winner of that game would also need to advance to the finals.
- For the first time, the women’s national championship game will air on BTN. This season, due to conflicting men’s conference tournaments, the semifinals will not be broadcast. But in coming years, all three Frozen Four games will air.