There was little drama for the University of Wisconsin’s men’s hockey team in its first game of the WCHA Final Five. Three first-period goals gave the Badgers a lead they won’t relinquish in a 7-2 win against Minnesota on Friday in St. Paul.
The Badgers (20-12-7) blitzed Minnesota State (24-13-3) with all three of those goals in the first 8:11. In the game, Jefferson Dahl netted two short-handed scores, and Tyler Barns added an assist to go with his two goals.
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Badgers goaltender Joel Rumpel made 38 saves, improving to 14-8-4 on the season. Wisconsin advances to the semifinals, where it will take on No. 1 seed St. Cloud State (23-14-1) on Friday. The two teams split the season series 1-1 in Madison and will get the rubber match with a trip to the WCHA Final Five finals at stake.