Minnesota made Colorado College pay dearly for its frequent defensive mistakes.
The Gophers seized control of the game by scoring three goals in the first 4 minutes of the second period, chasing Tigers goalie Joe Howe, en route to a 9-4 road win Saturday before 6,798 at World Arena.
“We defended as poorly as we have this season,” Tigers coach Scott Owens said. “Their speed and size had something to do with it. But it was a complete disaster from a defensive standpoint. They tormented us.”
It was Minnesota’s first road sweep in league play since Dec. 11-12, 2009, at Michigan Tech.
"Well, it was certainly not expected," Gophers coach Don Lucia told the Minneapolis Star-Tribune of the offensive onslaught. "We needed other guys to step up, and all of our lines contributed tonight, which was nice. It was great to get the four points."
CC (3-4-1, 1-3 Western Collegiate Hockey Association) would make it a little more interesting with a long-range slap shot by Gabe Guentzel getting past Minnesota goalie Kent Patterson only 47 seconds after the three-goal spurt to make it 6-3.
The game soon settled down with Minnesota outscoring the Tigers 3-1 the rest of the game. That included a shorthanded goal with 16:23 left in the game that killed any hopes of a Tigers’ rally.
“And that was just the one the goalie didn’t stop,” Owens said. “There were three chances they could have scored on.”
CC freshman netminder Josh Thorimbert was steady, making 23 saves over the final 36:03.
Jaden Schwartz, the 2010 St. Louis top draft pick, scored his team-leading sixth and seventh goals of the season to keep CC in the game early.
Schwartz’s second score came with 7.2 seconds left in the period and on the power play when Guentzel’s slap shot from near the blue line got through to Patterson. Schwartz banged in the loose puck to make it 3-2 headed into the first intermission.
After that, the Gophers (5-3, 3-3) took control for good with that three-goal outburst. Minnesota freshman Tom Serratore, son of Air Force coach Frank Serratore, recorded his first assist and goal in the win.