The Wisconsin Badgers (11-7-0 overall, 9-5-0-1-0 Big Ten) swept the Michigan State Spartans (6-10-2 overall, 5-10-1-2-1 Big Ten) in men’s hockey action over the weekend, winning 6-0 on Friday and 4-1 on Saturday.
The series couldn’t have gotten off to a better start for the Badgers as just 54 seconds into the first period Cole Caufield scored on the power play. It proved to be the game winning goal too as the Spartans anemic offense could only muster 19 total shots in the game compared to 50 for Wisconsin.
Robbie Beydoun got the start in goal for UW and turned away all 19 of those shots for his second shutout in a Badgers sweater. The Badgers chased MSU goalie Drew DeRidder after scoring five goals in the first two periods with Brock Caufield, Dylan Holloway, Ty Pelton-Byce and Cole Caufield again joining the goal scoring party. Holloway added a second goal in the third to cap the scoring.
Cole Caufield extended his point streak to nine games (eight goals, eight assists) and his goal-scoring string to four contests (five goals) while Holloway has 12 points in his last five games including four goals and seven points over the past two. The brothers Caufield also scored in the same game for the sixth time this season.
The second game of the series was much tougher sledding for the Badgers who didn’t find the back of the net until just over seven minutes gone in the second period. Linus Weissbach one-timed a seeing eye Cole Caufield pass on an odd-man rush to open the scoring.
️: Weissbach goal— Wisconsin Hockey (@BadgerMHockey) January 30, 2021
These guys are the last two you'd want to face on a two and one!
: Cole Caufield pic.twitter.com/YqzA5DPYpi
Michigan State scored early in the third on Cameron Rowe (who stopped 17 of 18 shots on the game) but the Badgers scored two power play goals on a five minute man-advantage with about seven minutes remaining to ice the game away. Pelton-Byce and Cole Caufield notched the PP tallies and then Caufield added an empty netter, goal No. 14 on the season for him, to finish the scoring. He extended his point streak to 10 games (nine goals, 10 assists) and his goal streak to five contests (seven goals).
Holloway, who had two assists on Saturday, now has a six-game point streak (three goals, eight assists) and five-game multi-point streak while Pelton-Byce has now scored a goal in four consecutive contests.
️: TPB gives the Badgers the lead— Wisconsin Hockey (@BadgerMHockey) January 30, 2021
:C. Caufield, Weissbach pic.twitter.com/SAJLhwP6p3
Cole Caufield currently leads the Big Ten in points (28), goals (14), assists (14, tied with Linus Weissbach), power play points (13), power play goals (6) and is second in shots (92). It was a bit of a shock when he decided to come back for his sophomore year, but he is certainly making the most of it and is well on his way to winning multiple individual awards along with keeping the Badgers on track to get back to the NCAA Tournament.
The Badgers travel to No. 1 Minnesota for a border battle series against the Gophers on Friday, Feb. 5 and Saturday, Feb. 6. Both games are set for 7 p.m. CST. Last time the two rivals went head to head, the Badgers ended Minnesota’s undefeated record and split the series.