Penn State Hockey: Badgers Thump Nittany Lions in Big Ten Opener
Penn State head coach Guy Gadowsky has long said that his team still needs to learn what it means to play at a high level. The Nittany Lions found that out the hard way on Friday night, losing in their Big Ten opener 7-1 to No. 17 ranked Wisconsin.
The Badgers opened the scoring only a few minutes into the contest. Grant Besse skated the Badgers to a 1-0 advantage at 2:54 of the frame after Sean Little collected a Penn State turnover at the Nittany Lion offensive blue line and found Besse during the ensuing two-on-one rush. Wisconsin scored again a few minutes later to open a 2-0 lead.
Nittany Lion captain Tommy Olczyk’s made it 2-1 after jumping into the offensive zone following a line change to find himself wide open in front of the net. It was Penn State only score in what became a very long night.
The Badgers added a pair of goals in the second stanza as they took a 4-1 lead. The first goal was a result of a Nittany Lion turnover -- the second a breakaway. Nittany Lion goaltender Matthew Skoff made several nice saves, but Penn State was overwhelmed on both ends of the ice from the outset.
The second game of the two game series will start at 9:00 PM on Saturday night. Penn State fell to Wisconsin in the first of a two-game series last year -- but turned the tables on the Badgers winning 3-2 in overtime to end the season.