A weekend to remember for U sports
Much of the focus heading into the weekend of Nov. 9-10 was on the first game for new women’s basketball head coach and local hero Lindsay Whalen. That certainly lived up to expectations, with a sellout crowd at Williams Arena (the largest announced home attendance ever) roaring its approval for Whalen and the Gophers in a 70-47 win over New Hampshire.
Those weren’t the only roars heard around campus and beyond during a wildly successful weekend. The soccer team traveled to Auburn and upset the Tigers in the first round of the NCAA Tournament, 2-0. The Gophers, 12-8-2, will now head to UCLA for a second-round contest Nov. 16 against the Bruins.
While Whalen was roaming the sideline of the Barn’s new court, the No. 3 women’s volleyball team was dispatching Indiana in straight sets next door at the Maturi Sports Pavilion to go 15-0 in Big Ten play. The following evening the Gophers beat No. 12 Purdue, also in straight sets, to set a team record for most consecutive Big Ten wins.
The biggest surprise of the weekend happened Saturday at TCF Bank Stadium, where the Golden Gophers routed Purdue 41-10 in the snow to even their record at 5-5. For reference, Purdue—which still had hopes of winning the Big Ten West Division title—had beaten Ohio State earlier this season by 29 points.
And the No. 16 men’s hockey team gained a weekend split with Wisconsin in Madison, with its 3-1 loss to the No. 20 Badgers on Saturday night being the only blemish on an otherwise perfect weekend in Gopher country.