UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -- Behind three goals from defensemen, No. 1 Minnesota bested Penn State 3-2 on Sunday night in the first meeting between the two Big Ten programs.
Brady Skjei, Mike Reilly and Ben Marshall tallied goals for the Gophers with Marshall's game winner snapping a 10-game goal drought for the junior defenseman.
Defense was the name of the game on Sunday night, and both teams' goaltenders made that point emphatically clear. Adam Wilcox improved to 13-2-3 in his sophomore campaign with a 28-save performance for the Gophers while Eamon McAdam moved to 0-5-0 with a 42-save game that kept the Nittany Lions on pace with Minnesota's offense.
Minnesota (14-2-3 overall, 4-0-1-0 Big Ten) jumped out to a first period lead when Skjei netted his third goal of the season at 2:37 after being set up by A.J. Michaelson and Connor Reilly. Mike Reilly made it a two-goal game with his eighth goal of the season - a power play goal at 11:34 that was set up by Travis Boyd. The Gophers have now tallied a power-play goal in five-straight games while Mike Reilly moved into a tie for third nationally in goals by a defenseman (most in the Big Ten).
Penn State (4-11-1, 0-3-0-0 Big Ten) cut the lead to one with a goal from Taylor Holstrom at 18:09 of the second period and netted the equalizer 3:45 into the third period off the stick of David Glenn.
Minnesota, which outshot the Nittany Lions 45-30 overall in the game, picked up the game winner from Marshall at 15:59 when Kyle Rau and Hudson Fasching fed the junior for the deciding goal.