MINNEAPOLIS (AP) —Emily West scored on Minnesota’s first shot on goal and the Golden Gophers routed North Dakota again, 5-1, on Saturday to advance to the NCAA Frozen Four women’s hockey tournament.
The Golden Gophers (32-5-2) scored three times in the second period. They outscored the Fighting Sioux 11-1 in their previous two games, including a 6-0 win in the Western Collegiate Hockey Association semifinals.
Minnesota will play Cornell in the first round of the NCAA Frozen Four.
Sarah Erickson had a goal and two assists and Amanda Kessel and Sarah Davis had a goal and an assist each for Minnesota, which took control in the second period. It scored even-strength, short-handed and on the power play.
West beat North Dakota starting goalie Stephanie Ney on the first shot of the game. Ney was replaced by Jorid Dagfinrud less than three minutes into the game without making a save. Dagfinrud finished with 23 saves.
Davis, Kessel and Erickson scored in the second period. Kessel’s goal was short-handed and Erickson’s came on the power play.
Minnesota goalie Noora Raty made 28 saves, including 16 in the third period. North Dakota (22-12-3) played much of the third period with its goalie pulled for an extra attacker. It managed just one goal, that by Michelle Karvinen on the power play and with an extra attacker on the ice.
North Dakota, playing in its first NCAA tournament, outshot the Gophers 29-28.
Both teams were 1-for-6 on the power play.
Minnesota is appearing in the NCAA tournament for the 10th time in the tournament’s 12-year existence. It is one of only three NCAA teams — WCHA members Wisconsin and Minnesota Duluth are the others — to have won an NCAA tournament title.
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