Hockey Recap: Lions Swept by Wisconsin, Stay Winless

By Michael Green on November 24, 2020 at 8:49 pm
Penn State defenseman Paul DeNaples (3) attempts to take the puck from Niagara forward Ludwig Stenlund (29) during the game against Niagara at Pegula Ice Arena on Friday, Oct. 19, 2018. No. 10 Penn State won 8-2.
Linsey Fagan, Roar Lions Roar

Game one – Wisconsin 6, Penn State 3

Game One Box Score
  1st 2nd 3rd Final
Penn State 1 1 1 3
Wisconsin 2 1 3 6

For two periods it felt like Penn State was finally starting to look like the team we've grown fond of over the last several years. Even though the Nittany Lions trailed the Badgers by a score of 3-2, Penn State led in shots on goal by a ridiculous 44-9 margin and it felt like all it would take is a bounce or two and the Lions would be on their way to their first win of the season.

Funny how things change. Just 38 seconds into the third period, Paul DeNaples was called for interference and the Lions just never seemed to recover. Wisconsin scored three goals in the first 10:40 of the period to win going away.

Things looked good early as Penn State seemed to control the flow of the game. Kevin Wall stole the puck at his own blue line and scored the game's first goal on a breakaway at 8:02 of the first. The goal was his third of the season and gave him a goal in four consecutive games dating back to last season's finale.

The lead was short-lived however as Sam Stange answered for the Badgers just 1:28 later to knot things up at one. Jack Gorniak gave the Badgers a 2-1 lead with a goal at 14:31 which they took into the first intermission.

Stange's second goal of the game extended the Badgers' lead early in the second. A goal by Tim Doherty, his first as a Lion, just 15 seconds later gave the Lions new life.

Game One Scoring Summary
Team Scoring Time (Pd.)
PSU Kevin Wall (3)
8:02 (1)
WIS Sam Stange (1)
9:30 (1)
WIS Jack Gorniak (1)
14:31 (1)
WIS Sam Stange (2)
Ess, Kehrer
4:54 (2)
PSU Tim Doherty (1)
Limoges, Phillips
5:09 (2)
WIS Brock Caufield (2)
5:13 (3)
WIS Cole Caufield (1) - PP
7:16 (3)
WIS Linus Weissbach (3)
B. Caufield, Kehrer
10:40 (3)
PSU Connor McMenamin (1)
Wall, Talvitie
19:08 (3)

Wisconsin appeared to regain its two-goal lead when Jason Dhooghe put the puck past Oskar Autio at the 8:16 mark of the period.  But the goal was waved off after review showed that Dhooghe interfered with Autio prior to the puck entering the net. Unfortunately, Penn State wasn't able to take advantage and the period ended with the Badgers leading 3-2.

After killing off the initial DeNaples penalty to start the third, Penn State couldn't regain the momentum, and the Caufield brothers took control. First Brock Caufield scored at 5:13 to extend the Badger lead to 4-2. Then, Cole Caufield took advantage of another DeNaples penalty and scored a power-play goal at 7:16. Finally, Brock Caufield made a slick pass to Linus Weissbach who buried the puck to make it 6-2.

A late goal by Connor McMenamin made the final score 6-3 in favor of the Badgers.

Game Two – Wisconsin 7, Penn State 3

Game Two Box Score
  1st 2nd 3rd Final
Penn State 0 1 2 3
Wisconsin 3 1 3 7

For a very brief moment in the second period, it looked like Penn State might turn this one around. Down 3-1, the Lions went on the power play with a chance to pull within one. Instead, 1:05 into the man advantage, Tarek Baker scored on a shorthanded breakaway and the rout was on.

The first period was all Wisconsin. Linus Weissbach scored his second goal of the series at 6:43. Less than three minutes later, Dominick Mersch netted his first of the season for a 2-0 Badger lead. Cole Caufield got into the act with a power-play goal at 17:21 and Wisconsin took a three-goal lead into the first intermission.

The Lions finally started to show some life in the second period. Alex Limoges scored his first of the season off a fantastic feed from Jimmy Dowd, Jr. at 4:21.

Game Two Scoring Summary
Team Scoring Time (Pd.)
WIS Linus Weissbach (4)
B. Caufield, Kehrer
6:43 (1)
WIS Dominick Mersch (1)
Dhooghe, De St. Phalle
9:06 (1)
WIS Cole Caufield (2) - PP
Baker, Weissbach
17:21 (1)
PSU Alex Limoges (1)
Dowd Jr., Sternschein
4:21 (2)
WIS Tarek Baker (1) - SH
18:56 (2)
WIS Sam Stange (3)
0:26 (3)
WIS Cole Caufield (3)
1:19 (3)
PSU Xander Lamppa (1)
8:49 (3)
PSU Clayton Phillips (1) - PP
Sternschein, Limoges
9:54 (3)
WIS Cole Caufield (4) - EN
17:57 (3)

Penn State maintained control of play for most of the period and had its best chance to draw within one when the Badgers’ Ryder Donovan got called for boarding and the Lions went on the power play. Unfortunately, a turnover near the blue line led to Baker’s breakaway shorty. The period ended with Wisconsin up 4-1.

Early in the third, the young Nittany Lions probably wished they had just gotten on the bus and gone home. Liam Soulière got caught behind the net leading to a Sam Stange goal just 26 seconds in. Less than a minute later, Caufield scored his second of the game to put the game out of reach.

Give the Lions credit though. They didn’t quit. Xander Lamppa scored his first career goal at 8:49, and Clayton Phillips followed that up a minute later with Penn State’s first power-play goal of the season.

Down 6-3, Coach Gadowsky pulled his goalie with 3:18 to play. The move backfired though as Caufield scored into the empty net to complete the hat trick and give the Badgers the 7-3 victory.

Next Up

Life won't get any easier for the Lions when Penn State hosts Michigan for a two-game set on December 2 and 3. The Wolverines have outscored their opponents 18-4 to start the season with four straight victories. Thankfully, though, the Nittany Lions do get a little break before then to assess their play over the first four games, and they'll have the benefit of playing at home in Pegula Ice Arena.