The Minnesota Gophers are the Big Ten Regular Season Champions for the fourth season in a row, and have now set an NCAA Record by winning their sixth regular season championship in a row. Minnesota defeated Michigan State 4-0 to clinch a tie for the title, and won it outright when Ohio State defeated Wisconsin 5-1 in Madison. The Gophers will have the #1 seed in the Big Ten Tournament next weekend in Detroit.
The Gophers got their first two goals from an unlikely source. Sophomore defenseman Jack Sadek ripped two blasts from the left point and scored his second and third goals as a Gophers. It would stay 2-0 until the third period when Darian Romanko would score on a pretty two on one pass from Jack Ramsey to make it 3-0. Ryan Collins would put the final nail in the coffin late in the third period, and the celebration was on. Eric Schierhorn made 24 saves to record his fifth shutout of the season.
Minnesota has now won the Big Ten Regular Season Championship in all four years that the Big Ten has existed as a hockey conference. Additionally, since the Gophers won the WCHA in their last two seasons in that league, Minnesota has now set an NCAA record in winning six regular season conference championships in a row. They were previously tied with Boston University with five.
With the win coupled with Nebraska-Omaha’s upset 1-0 victory over Western Michigan in the first round of the NCHC playoffs the Gophers leapfrogged over the Broncos to move up to the #4 spot in the Pairwise and back into position to be a #1 seed in the NCAA Tournament if it started tomorrow.
The Gophers will finish the Big Ten Regular Season pressure free Saturday night where they were honor the six seniors on the roster before the game. Minnesota will next play in the Big Ten Tournament next Friday against the winner of the 4/5 game between Michigan and either Penn or Ohio State.