Gophers Back At Frozen 4 For 1st Time In 7 years

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Gopher Hockey Coach Don Lucia (credit: Univeristy Of Minnesota)

Gopher Hockey Coach Don Lucia (credit: Univeristy Of Minnesota)

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — The Minnesota Golden Gophers are back in the NCAA Frozen Four for the first time in seven years.

That may not seem like a long drought for newcomers Ferris State and Union. But it’s a lifetime by the lofty standards held at one of the most prestigious hockey programs in the country.

Questions surrounded coach Don Lucia’s job security heading into this season after two straight first-round exits in the WCHA tournament helped keep the Gophers from qualifying for the NCAAs.

But the Gophers won the WCHA regular season title and avenged a tournament final loss to North Dakota with a convincing 5-2 victory last weekend in the West Regional to advance to Tampa, Fla.

The Gophers will face Boston College on April 5 in the semifinals.

(© Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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