Reigning champion Badgers take care of business to start new season

After winning the national championship last season, the Badgers have their sights set high again this year.

After winning the national championship last season, the Badgers have their sights set high again this year.

Image By: Cameron Lane-Flehinger

The Wisconsin Badgers (2-0-0) women’s hockey team took home a pair of wins against the Lindenwood Lions (0-0-2) on Friday and Saturday. The Badgers beat out the Lions 4-0 in Friday night’s season opener and Saturday’s rematch that resulted in a 6-2 Badger victory.

In the opener on Friday, Wisconsin picked up a quick goal 12 minutes into the game, scored by junior forward Brette Pettet. 

The Badgers were strong on the power play, capitalizing on 40 percent of opportunities for the game. Sophie Shirley, Wisconsin’s third-leading scorer in her freshman year last season, continued her dominance with two goals, while senior forward Abby Roque added three assists. Forward Daryl Watts rounded out the scoring with the first goal of her junior campaign.

"At this time of the year you're trying to figure out who can play with who and what kind of chemistry certain players can have,” head coach Mark Johnson said in an interview after the game. 

“Obviously when people score, it helps with their confidence.”

Redshirt senior goaltender Kristen Campbell recorded her first shutout of the year, marking 17 saves. This marked Campbell’s fourth shutout in a row, the past three shutouts coming last year in the NCAA championship tournament.

The Badgers stayed in Maryland Heights for a Saturday evening rematch that resulted in the same goal differential in favor of the Badgers. Six different players scored for Wisconsin in Saturday’s match, with Roque and Shirley leading the scoring points board with five points each. 

Senior forward Alexis Mauermann, junior forward Caitlin Schneider, senior forward Presley Norby, sophomore forward Britta Curl and Watts also scored goals Saturday. 

“Having more people score in the season folds well for the players individually and collectively,” Johnson said. “It makes us stronger."

Wisconsin went three for five on the power play on Saturday, giving the team an impressive mark of five for ten on the power play through two games.

Kristen Campbell’s shutout streak ceased after 281 scoreless minutes after allowing a power play goal to Lindenwood’s junior forward Hannah Alt ten minutes into the first period. Lions' freshman forward Lauren Dabrowski also scored on a power play, bringing the score up six to two.

“Now we've got a weekend under our belt, and we get an opportunity to come back Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday and get ourselves ready for Penn State next weekend,” Johnson said. “So, a lot of good things happened and certainly a lot of things we have to work on."

The National Champions are back in action next week for their home opener on Friday night at 7 p.m. at LaBahn Arena against the Penn State Nittany Lions. The two teams will then square off the next night on Saturday night at 7 p.m..

The 2018-19 National Champion team will be honored by the Badgers prior to the game on October 4th.

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