Sophomore forward Lindsay Agnew scored two first period goals off of two assists from fellow sophomore linemate Taylor Williamson the last time the Gophers took the ice against the Huskies.
Agnew will hope to find that form once again as the No. 3 seed Gophers take on the No. 6 seed this weekend at Ridder Arena for the WCHA first round. The third line of Sophie Skarzynski, Agnew and Williamson combined for three goals in the most recent series against St. Cloud.
“The last few weeks we were talking about moving our feet, that will put us in good spots out there,” Agnew said. “Playing unselfish hockey out there too, which we did in that Saturday St. Cloud game will put us in a good spot to do well this weekend.”
Since she had time off from the Gophers before the second half of the season, Agnew competed in Nations Cup, a four-day competition between various national teams around the world. She represented Canada in the event.
Agnew played with three other players who have ties to Minnesota. Agnew faced off against former Gophers Noora Raty and Mira Jalosuo when Canada played Finland. Raty and Jalosuo just took the Bronze medal in the Olympic Games. Amy Potomak, the sister of Sarah Potomak, also played for Canada.
Agnew’s team went 1-2 in the tournament and took fifth place. Still, the experiences she took from that are helping her as the Gophers lead up to the playoffs.
“Playing in the Nations Cup, you just kind of learn to play at a higher level,” Agnew said. “That gave me more confidence coming back after break with our team.”
Agnew has tallied 10 points on the season with five goals and five assists. Three of the goals have come in the second half of the season, building off that confidence-boosting experience at the Nations Cup.
Williamson said something that makes Agnew so valuable for the Gophers is her unique high IQ of the game of hockey.
“What sets her apart from other players is that unselfishness, yet she knows when she has to shoot the puck,” Williamson said. “The way she thinks about the game is fun and I am able to think about how my strengths work with her.”
The two sophomores will need to continue to be unselfish as the Gophers enter the playoff season. The last time the Gophers didn’t make it to the Frozen Four was the 2010-2011 season.
The No. 7 Gophers have a 39-game winning streak over the Huskies, and have only lost to them a total of three times in the program history. This will be Minnesota’s sixth time playing St. Cloud State this year. They have a 4-0-1 record against them.
“It’s a fresh start and a new series here, and we know we got to win it to keep playing, and we haven’t been in this position in quite a few years,” said head coach Brad Frost.