Gopher Women's Hockey 2022-23 Season

Gotta hand to it Abbey Murphy, when you have taken 1/4 of your teams PIM and are also third in scoring.
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And Ohio State gets sent to the penalty box after blasting Grace Zumwinkle at the low boards.

Gophers will win!


Gophers Win! Gophers beat Ohio State 4-2!

Taylor Heise with three assists.

Fantastic game.




I will be at the game tomorrow. BIG GAME!

Goaltender Skylar Vetter had 31 saves on 33 shots with a .939 save percentage. Great job!


Abbey Murphy! Watch these video highlights!


Let's see that again from another angle.

Abbey Murphy. Wow!

Player of the week award for that! Or more.

She had two goals this game against top-ranked Ohio State. I mean, the former top-ranked Ohio State.


Looks like a full house. Perhaps with the men not playing this weekend, many fans drifted next door to watch some good hockey.

I will be at the game tomorrow. BIG GAME!
Tomorrow night is huge. Looking at the standings, if we win tomorrow, we could get swept by Wisconsin (God forbid) and still enter the UST series in control of our own destiny.

Fifth-year Crystalyn Hengler, defense, is one reason the Gophers are so good. Defenders can be a bit under the radar for stats, while forwards are more likely to appear on stats reports.

In hockey there are multiple lines that play. The first line defense starters are Madeline Wethington and Emily Oden. Strong on all lines makes the Gophers so good.

The prior two seasons for Hengler entering this season:
  • Recorded career-high four points in series sweep over RIT (Nov. 12-13), 2021-22
  • Ranked third on the team in blocked shots (35) , 2021-22
  • Finished season with career high in points (17), goals (5), shots (64), and plus/minus rating (+30), , 2021-22
  • One of nine Gophers to appear in all 39 games, , 2021-22
  • 2x WCHA Defender of the Week (Dec. 15, Feb. 23), 2020-21
  • Tied for the lead among WCHA defense with four goals, 2020-21
  • Tied for seventh among WCHA defense with nine points (4g-5a), 2020-21
  • One of 14 Gophers to appear in all 20 games, , 2020-21
  • Led WCHA defense and tied for fourth in the nation with three power-play goals in 20 games, 2020-21
  • Tied for second on the team with 27 blocked shots, 2020-21
  • Tied for third on the team with a plus-10 plus/minus rating, 2020-21

A 2018 graduate of Eden Prairie High School... • two-time all-state, three-time all-conference, two-time all-metro honoree in hockey • recorded 41 points (20g-21a) in 31 games for the Eagles as a senior in 2017-18 • 2018 Minnesota Ms. Hockey semifinalist • named to Minnesota Class AA State Tournament all-tournament team after helping Eden Prairie to a state championship as a sophomore in 2015-16 • member of U.S. Women’s Under-18 Team • won gold with the U.S. Women’s National Under-18 Team at the 2016 IIHF Under-18 Women’s World Championship • attended USA Hockey development camps.

I think they just said it's a sell out. Lots of people along the railings. The view is good from there in this venue.

Ohio State has outplayed Minnesota.

14 shots on goal for OS.

7 SOG for Minneaota.

3 good shots have hit the pipe or cross bar.

Whoa, now Ohio State fists fly.

Minnesota outplayed Ohio State in the 2nd. Shots on goal are now 22 Minnesota and 20 Ohio State. But Gophers scored no goals. Still trailing by 1 goal.

Looks like that home win streak is over. Those quick goals have been killer.

They played hard. Missed some close shots. Made a few mistakes. Ohio State is relentless, makes you pay.

Minnesota leads the WCHA. Ohio State is #2.

Yale this weekend beat lessor teams Union and RPI. Maybe Yale will be #1 in national rankings. I assume Ohio State will hold the #2 spot in polls followed by Minnesota at #3.

Minnesota and Ohio State could go either way 3 and 2 or 2 and 3. I think Minnesota and Ohio State are about even, maybe Ohio State a fraction of a fraction slightly better than Minnesota. Future games look to be an even toss up unless something changes.

And another huge series coming up against Wisconsin at home. This concludes the home games season. Gets tickets while you can. I will be going to both games. It's a terrific game experience.

Minnesota Gophers hockey -- men and women -- are the hottest tickets in town.

Saturday will be on the Big Ten Network.


Tickets are on sale for the WCHA Final Faceoff tournament and title game in Minnesota at Ridder Arena where the final four WCHA teams square off:

2023 Kwik Trip WCHA Final Faceoff

The 2023 Kwik Trip WCHA Final Faceoff will be held March 3-4, 2023 at Ridder Arena in Minneapolis. Annually featuring a collection of the nation's highest-ranked programs and best players, the WCHA's four remaining teams will compete for the league's playoff championship and an automatic berth in the 2023 NCAA tournament.

Friday, March 3, 2023
Semifinal Game 1 – 1 p.m. CT
Semifinal Game 2 – 5 p.m. CT

Saturday, March 4, 2023
Championship Game (Semifinal 1 Winner vs. Semifinal 2 Winner) – 2 p.m. CT

Three-Game, All-Tournament Packages
$37 – Reserved Chairback Seating
$27 – General Admission (Adult)
$20 – General Admission (Seniors/Students/Youth)
$10 – General Admission (Groups of 10+)

All games will stream live on B1G+. Tickets can be purchased online HERE, in-person at the Ridder Arena Box Office, or by phone at 1-800-U-GOPHER. All tickets purchased in advance will be issued electronically.

The WCHA thanks 2022 Final Faceoff supporting partners adidas, Howies Hockey Tape, Kowalski's Markets, Krampade, JLG, Sterling Trophy and SPX Sports.

About Ridder Arena

The first-ever facility built specifically for women's hockey in the country, Ridder Arena is home to the seven-time national champion University of Minnesota Golden Gopher Women's Hockey Program. Since its opening in 2002, Ridder Arena has been a regular host of WCHA Championships (2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2013, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2021 and 2022), NCAA Regionals and Frozen Fours (2010, 2013 and 2015).

All-time WCHA Playoff Champions​
SeasonPlayoff Champion(s)
1999-00Minnesota Duluth
2000-01Minnesota Duluth
2002-03Minnesota Duluth
2007-08Minnesota Duluth
2009-10Minnesota Duluth
2019-20Ohio State
2021-22Ohio State

One writer's opinion only (not a poll ranking)​


Minnesota leapfrogs Ohio State to top the women's college hockey Power 10 rankings​

"A matchup between two national super powers led to a new top team in this week's women's college hockey power rankings.

A brief reminder: These rankings are mine alone, and I base them on a combination of the PairWise (NPI), strength of schedule, recent results and trends that have emerged over the course of the season. New rankings will come out every other week until the women's hockey tournament begins in March.

With that in mind, here is this week's Power 10:

1. Minnesota (3): The Golden Gophers (23-4-2, 20-2-2-2 WCHA) jump to the top after a split with Ohio State, improving to 2-1-1 on the year against the reigning national champs with a 4-2 win before OSU bounced back in Game 2. Minnesota rolled through then-No. 6 Minnesota Duluth the previous weekend as well. Taylor Heise and Grace Zumwinkle remain red hot and in the hunt for the national scoring lead, while Skylar Vetter remains strong in goal. Before the Game 2 loss, they had won 13 straight. The Gophers have the highest strength of schedule, and they have another tough matchup with Wisconsin this week before closing the regular season against St. Thomas.

FROZEN FOUR: Here's everything you need to know for the 2023 women's Frozen Four

2. Ohio State (1):
The Buckeyes (25-3-2, 20-3-1 WCHA) responded nicely in their 5-1 victory on Saturday to split the series with Minnesota, who is one of few teams to have the formula to beat OSU this year. They split with Minnesota State last weekend as well as part of a 10-game winning streak before the loss to the Gophers. Jennifer Gardiner has come on very strong of late, jumping to fourth in the nation with 46 points, and the power play remains as close to automatic as it can get. They should be able to build momentum against St. Thomas this weekend before a series at Wisconsin in the regular-season finale.

3. Yale (2): Sliding Yale (23-1-1, 16-1-1 ECAC) down was tough because it's not a reflection of performance. The top three is packed right now. That said, the Bulldogs are just as strong as the two teams ahead of them, winning 15 in a row. They took care of St. Lawrence and Clarkson before hanging a 10-spot on Union in a 10-1 win prior to their victory over RPI. They have a top penalty kill, and leading scorers Elle Hartje (6g, 12a) and Charlotte Welch (6g, 16a) each have an 11-game point streak. Pia Dukaric remains one of the nation's elite goaltenders. They have challenges with Colgate and Cornell this weekend before facing Dartmouth and Harvard next week.

4. Northeastern (4): The Huskies (25-2-1, 21-2-1 HEA) look unstoppable right now, in the midst of a 13-game win streak. They cruised past Holy Cross and New Hampshire in their last two games to keep their momentum rolling into a Beanpot semifinals date with Boston University on Tuesday as part of three games against the Terriers before the end of the regular season. Gwyneth Philips has been the nation's best goaltender, leading in save percentage, goals-against average, wins and shutouts. Meanwhile Alina Müller, Chloé Aurard and Maureen Murphy still make up a buzzsaw on offense, ranking eighth, ninth and tenth, respectively in scoring. They'll face UConn on Friday between Beanpot games.

BEANPOT: Everything you need to know for the 2023 tournament

5. Colgate (6):
The Raiders (24-4-2, 14-3-1 ECAC) took down St. Lawrence before shutting out Clarkson as part of a 4-0-1 stretch over their last five games. Both Kayle Osborne and Hannah Murphy have been dependable between the pipes of late, allowing a combined five goals over that span, and Danielle Serdachny has reclaimed the NCAA scoring lead with a ridiculous 53 points (18g, 35a) in 30 games. They'll host Yale for their most difficult matchup left before games with Brown, Union and RPI ahead of the ECAC tournament.

6. Quinnipiac (7): The Bobcats (25-5-0, 15-3-0 ECAC) bounced back from their loss to Yale with a thorough 4-0 victory over Princeton on Jan. 28, only to fall flat in an 11-3 loss to the Tigers the following day, allowing three separate hat tricks. QU responded accordingly this past Friday with a dominant 8-0 win over Dartmouth that saw eight different goal-scorers. They're still a major threat in the ECAC with strong goaltending, and have a chance to wrack up wins through the end of the regular season with games against RPI, Union, St. Lawrence and Clarkson.

7. Wisconsin (8): The Badgers (21-8-1, 17-6-1 WCHA) have won five of six with dominant showings against Minnesota State and St. Thomas, recovering from their five-game losing streak in January. Most recently, they split with No. 14 St. Cloud State at home as Jojo Chobak made 39 saves and stole a 1-0 Game 1 win for SCSU. They came back with a 3-2 win in the rubber match, thanks to three-straight goals in less than 15 minutes of elapsed time in which Jesse Compher potted in a goal and two assists. Their remaining schedule is a gauntlet with Minnesota and Ohio State on deck.

8. Minnesota Duluth (7): The Bulldogs (20-8-2, 14-8-2 WCHA) went 1-0-1 against Minnesota State with a 4-3 win and 0-0 tie this weekend. They came back from a 3-1 hole to the Mavericks before taking Game 1 in overtime. Last week, the Gophers ended UMD's nine-game unbeaten run (8-0-1) with a wire-to-wire sweep that never saw the Bulldogs hold a lead. Duluth can add some more wins to its resume with series against St. Cloud and Bemidji State on tap.

9. Clarkson (9): The Golden Knights (22-8-2, 11-6-1 ECAC) had an up-and-down last two weeks, beating Brown in a game where they allowed only 11 shots before losing to Yale for the second time in less than a month. They followed it up with a 2-1 win against Cornell and a 2-0 shutout loss to Colgate, where none of their 37 shots found a way through. Michelle Pasiechnyk has been one of the strongest netminders around lately, allowing more than two goals just twice since the start of December.They'll face Harvard, Dartmouth and Princeton en route to a battle with Quinnipiac in the regular season finale.

10. Penn State (NR): The Nittany Lions (22-8-2, 12-1-1 CHA) have won six straight and 12 of 13 as part of an unbeaten 12-0-1 stretch, going back to Thanksgiving weekend. They haven't had the strongest schedule, but have made the most of the opponents they've been dealt, averaging 4.78 goals per game in this stretch. Kiara Zanon has been on fire, leading the nation in goals (23) and sitting fifth in points (45). PSU will finish their regular season with a series at RIT this weekend.

Dropped out: Cornell (10):

The Big Red (12-11-2, 9-8-1 ECAC) have hit a rut, losing four straight and six of eight. They dropped a wild 7-6 affair with Harvard before a 5-1 rout at the hands of Dartmouth last weekend. This past week they fell to Clarkson, 2-1, and St. Lawrence, 3-2 in overtime, in a pair of close games, blowing a 2-0 lead in the third period and managing just 16 shots on goal against SLU. Cornell will look to right the ship against Brown before facing Yale, and will visit RPI and Union before the conference tournament.

The USCO poll today still has Ohio State, Yale and Minnesota THE BIG THREE in that order.


The updated USA Today Coaches poll has NOT come out yet this week. Last week it was this:


WCHA Final Facebook tickets on sale now. Minnesota this year will host. One ticket purchase gets you in the door for all games.

Kwik Trip WCHA Final Faceoff Game Schedule

Semifinal Game One (3/3/23): 1:00 pm

Semifinal Game Two (3/3/23): 5:00 pm

Championship Game (3/4/23): 2:00 pm


Quarterfinal tickets go on sale February 16. Game details yet to be determined.

The WCHA Quarterfinals is a best of 3 game series.


The USCO poll today still has Ohio State, Yale and Minnesota THE BIG THREE in that order.

The updated USA Today Coaches poll has NOT come out yet this week. Last week it was this:

The USA Today Coaches poll out today has Minnesota #3 and the BIG THREE holding the top three spots -- except Yale as moved into the #1 spot.


Gracie Ostertag mic'd up in Gophers hockey practice. She's a fifth-year defender. Contributions of players on defense may not show up in stats like other positions. The Gophers have terrific depth -- and one of the BIG THREE teams in college women's hockey:

2022-23 • Fifth Year Season:

  • Named team captain
  • Tallied career-high three assists in 4-4 tie at No. 1 Ohio State
  • Notched two assists in 4-3 loss to No. 5 Yale (Nov. 26)

2021-22 • Senior Season:

  • WCHA Scholar-Athlete, WCHA All-Academic Team, and Academic All-Big Ten member
  • Named team assistant captain
  • Recorded three points (2g-1a) in series sweep over Minnesota State (Oct. 15-16)
  • Scored two goals in series sweep over St. Cloud State (Nov. 19-20)
  • Appeared in 14 games
  • Recorded career-high in goals (4)
2020-21 • Junior Season:

  • WCHA Scholar-Athlete, WCHA All-Academic Team, and Academic All-Big Ten honoree
  • Appeared in five games
  • Recorded an assist in a 7-4 win at Ohio State (Jan. 29)
2019-20 • Sophomore Season:

  • Big Ten Distinguished Scholar, WCHA Scholar-Athlete, WCHA All-Academic, and Academic All-Big Ten honoree
  • Recorded a career-high 11 points (1g-10a)
  • One of 15 Gophers to play in all 36 games
  • Led the team and ranked 15th in the WCHA with 50 blocked shots
  • Recorded a career-high two assists in series sweep over Minnesota State (Oct. 4-5)
  • Scored first collegiate goal in 4-3 win at Robert Morris (Oct. 11)
  • Had one assist in 4-2 win at Ohio State (Oct. 26)
  • Recorded an assist in 2-2 (OT) tie with Wisconsin (Nov. 3)
  • Tallied an assist in 2-2 (OT) tie at Minnesota Duluth (Nov. 22)
  • Logged one assist WCHA First Round sweep over St. Cloud State (Feb. 28-29)
2018-19 • Freshman Season:

  • Recorded six points (6a)
  • One of 11 Gophers to play in all 39 games
  • Ranked sixth on the team with 30 blocked shots
  • Made college debut in season-opening 4-2 win over Mercyhurst (Sept. 28)
  • Recorded first collegiate point with an assist in 3-2 loss to Ohio State (Oct. 20)
  • Had first career multi-point game with two assists in 8-2 win over St. Lawrence (Nov. 23)
  • Made NCAA Frozen Four debut
High School/Club: A 2018 graduate of Shattuck-St. Mary’s School where she played for coaches Gordon Stafford and Melissa Boik • four-time national champion with the Sabres, winning U-16 national championships as a freshman and sophomore and winning U-19 national championships as a junior and senior • named USA Today High School Sports All-USA First Team honoree in 2018 and All-USA Second Team honoree in 2017 • member of U.S. Women’s Under-18 Team • three-time gold medalist with the U.S. Women’s National Under-18 Team at the 2018, 2017, and 2016 IIHF Under-18 Women’s World Championships • served as an alternate captain and was named Best Defenseman of the tournament at the 2018 U-18 world championship • competed in Under-18 Three-Game Series between the U.S. and Canada in August 2015, August 2016, and August 2017 • has attended USA Hockey Women’s National Festivals and player development camps.

Personal: Daughter of Chris and Kathy Ostertag • has two siblings, Matt and Joey • Business and Marketing Education major • shoots right • high school teammates with Gopher alumnae Alex Woken and Patti Marshall • enjoys spending time with family and friends at her cabin in Northern Minnesota, wake-surfing, four-wheeling, and being on the lake.

Border Battle Week!



Gophers women’s hockey: Border Battle preview​

One of the most crucial conference matchups for the Gophers this season is on Friday and Saturday against rival Wisconsin.


The 2023 women's Frozen Four begins Friday, March 17, at AMSOIL Arena in Duluth, Minn. The national championship is Sunday, March 19.

Regional competition will be held on the campuses of the top-four programs March 9-12.

Here are the dates and venues for the 2023 women's ice hockey tournament:


Round City Venue Dates Host

Regional TBD TBD March 9-12 TBD
Regional TBD TBD March 9-12 TBD
Regional TBD TBD March 9-12 TBD
Regional TBD TBD March 9-12 TBD

Frozen Four Duluth, Minn. AMSOIL Arena March 17 & 19 University of Minnesota Duluth

This will be the fourth time Duluth has hosted the Frozen Four.


Gophers - WCHA Quarterfinal Game 2

Gophers - WCHA Quarterfinal Game 2​

Event Date: Saturday, February 25, 2023 at 2:00 pm
Facility: Ridder Arena

Gophers - WCHA Quarterfinal Game 2 goes on sale on Thursday, February 16, 2023 at 10:00 am.

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