After splitting the series with No. 1 Minnesota this past weekend, No. 12/14 Wisconsin (6-6 overall, 6-4 Big Ten) will face Arizona State (5-9-2) at home this weekend.
Although they didn’t come out victorious on Sunday, Wisconsin made headlines this past weekend for being the first team to hand the Gophers a loss this season with their 3-1 victory Saturday afternoon.
Heading into this weekend, the tone for the Badgers will be revenge. Wisconsin came up short both games in their series against Arizona State earlier in the season — their only losses in history against the Sun Devils — losing the first game 8-5 and the second 3-1.
The Badgers, however, were missing five of their top players during that series, most notably senior forward Ty Pelton-Byce and sophomore forward Dylan Holloway, due to injury, COVID protocols and World Juniors Championship training camps.
Senior goaltender Robbie Beydoun is coming off of a solid weekend against Minnesota — he saved 35 of 36 shots in the Badger’s victory against Minnesota, bringing him to a .904 save percentage across 11 games.
The Sun Devils have been the only team this season to hold sophomore forward Cole Caufield to zero points — he has recorded at least one point every other game. Caufield currently leads Wisconsin offensively with 14 points (seven goals, seven assists).
One key to winning for the Badgers will be stopping Arizona State freshman forward Matthew Kopperud, the current leader in the nation in goals scored (12) and tied for second in points scored (18). Sun Devil senior forward Johnny Walker is also someone to watch out for, as he has scored in his last three games, totaling for seven points (three goals, four assists), one of which was his 100th career goal.
Badger fans should keep an eye on senior forward Sean Dhooghe, who transferred from Wisconsin to play for the Sun Devils. Dhooge was an alternate captain his junior year and had 26 goals and 56 total points in 102 games for Tony Granato's squad. The Illinois native scored a goal in his only game of the season against Minnesota.
Puck drop is set for 7 p.m. CT on both Friday and Saturday night, with game one airing on Fox Sports Wisconsin PLUS and game two on Fox Sports Wisconsin.