Minnesota coach Don Lucia notches 391st win, most in program history
COLUMBUS, Ohio -- With a 4-2 win against Ohio State, Minnesota's Don Lucia earned his 391st victory as head coach of the Gophers and now stands alone with the most wins in program history.
Now in his 16th season at Minnesota, Lucia boasts a 391-200-68 (.645) record with Friday's winning pushing Lucia ahead of his predecessor Doug Woog for the school wins record. The inaugural Big Ten Coach of the Year, who has led the Gophers to back-to-back national championships in 2002 and 2003, has a 670-355-97 career coaching record -- the ninth-most wins in college hockey history.
No. 15 Minnesota (19-11-3, 10-4-3 Big Ten) picked up goals from Justin Kloos, Sam Warning, Kyle Rau and Seth Ambroz while outshooting the Buckeyes 32-26 on Friday night. The Gophers have won three consecutive games against Ohio State and will go for the season sweep on Saturday.
The Gophers jumped out to a one-goal lead twice in the first period only for the Buckeyes to respond seconds later. Kloos pocketed the game's first goal -- his 11th of the year -- at 13:04 after being set up by Taylor Cammarata and Brady Skjei, only for Craig Dalrymple to even things up 12 seconds later at 13:16. Then Warning reclaimed the lead with a wide-angle shot for his 11th of the year at 17:05 with assists going to Travis Boyd and Jake Bischoff, only for Tyler Lundey to find the net 19 seconds later at 17:23 as the first period ended in a 2-2 tie.
After a back-and-forth first period, the second was all Minnesota. Rau found the net for his 16th of the year at 6:10 of the second stanza, tying Boyd for the team goal lead. Leon Bristedt fed Rau for his 21st career game-winning goal, the most among active NCAA players. Rau's 157th career point also ties him for 25th all-time at Minnesota with Mike Crowley.
The senior scoring frenzy continued as Seth Ambroz deflected in an attempt from Ryan Collins at 15:36. Mike Reilly also assisted on the play as all three contributed to the insurance goal. With three of Minnesota's four goals coming from seniors on Friday, the class has tallied 28 of the team's 45 goals during the past 11 games (Minnesota is 8-2-1 in that stretch).
After allowing two goals in the first, Adam Wilcox closed the door for the final 40 minutes of play to pick up the win. Wilcox made 24 saves to move to 18-10-3 on the season. Christian Frey took the loss for Ohio State, making 28 saves to fall to 7-11-1 on the year.
The Gophers took just one penalty in the series opener, successfully killing Ohio State's only power-play chance of the night. Minnesota went 0-for-2 on the power play, just the second time in the past 12 games that Minnesota has not tallied a goal while on the man advantage.