It’s my turn in the pressbox, and I’ve got one of the best seats in the house. I’ll be giving updates throughout the game.
0:12: A huge hit in the corner energizes the crowd, of which is 90% is clad in red.
4:04: Wisconsin takes the first penalty of the game. It’s one of the top power plays in the nation against one of the top penalty kills. Advantage UW this time – Maine doesn’t score.
9:57: Yet another TV timeout – TV is obviously great for the game, but the constant interruptions hurt the flow of the game. Players stand around in the faceoff circle waiting for a big yellow light over at the scorer’s table to go out.
10:12: Bang – just like that it’s 1-0 Badgers. Adam Burish from Joe Pavelski and Robbie Earl. The puck goes in off a Maine defender after Maine goaltender Ben Bishop makes the initial save. The place explodes.
11:49: The Badgers take another penalty – charging on Nick Licari. He argues the call, but referee Dave Hansen makes a motion showing Licari that his skates were six inches off the ground when he made the hit.
13:49: The penalty ends with the Badgers getting more chances than the Black Bears.
13:53: UW goes on the man advantage for the first time this evening. Nothing doing.
17:37: Maine ties it at 1-1. Like UW’s, a deflected goal off a defender. Michel Leveille from Matt Duffy. First goal allowed by Badger goaltender Brian Elliott in 270 minutes, 26 seconds.
20:00: End of one. Maine survives a scare off a bad bounce with less than a minute to play.
4:18: It’s all Maine early on, but when the Badgers take a penalty after a scrum in front of the UW net, it’s Wisconsin that gets the goal. Ross Carlson picks up the puck at center ice, beats a Maine defender than then puts a wrist shot past Bishop. 2-1 UW.
8:16: A two on one on the power play produces UW’s third goal of the game. Robbie Earl was shooting all the way, beating Bishop to make it 3-1.
11:53: Maine gets a badly needed power play but can’t convert.
15:53: Observation during the last TV timeout – Wisconsin has a dozen or so energetic fans who dance in front of their band. Maine didn’t have anything like that at the beginning of the game, but thanks to some North Dakota fans, they now do. A group came down and is dancing…I guess it’s dancing..in front of the Maine band in an attempt to psych up the Maine fans. No conference loyalty there, I guess.
17:12: The Badgers take another penalty. So far their penchant for hitting after the whistle hasn’t cost them as Maine has been unable to convert.
18:48 Great save by Elliott keeps it 3-1 Badgers. Maine takes a penalty…then another at 19:52. Black Bear head coach Tim Whitehead doesn’t like it. He points to the replay on the scoreboard, yelling at the ref, “Did you see that?”
20:00. 3-1, guys in red. Most people in the crowd very happy. Back for more in a few minutes.
4:48: Maine kills off both penalties. They get some chances after that, but Elliott is playing very well.
5:20: A turnover produces a chance for UW’s Nick Licari, but he’s hauled down. The Badgers don’t convert on the power play.
9:56: Maine is outshooting Wisconsin 32-28, but the Badgers have definitely had the better scoring opportunities.
11:29: We’ve got a brand new hockey game as Mike Lundin scores through a bit of a screen to make it 3-2 Badgers. Greg Moore and Josh Soares with the helpers.
12:26: The third time’s the charm as Bishop makes two saves, but UW’s Ben Street roofs a backhand over the sprawled netminder to make it 4-2 Badgers.
16:31: TV timeout shortly after another Wisconsin penalty has expired, and time is beginning to slip away for the Black Bears.
17:30 Maine pulls Bishop. At 18:16, the puck’s in the back of the Black Bear net. Earl ices it, making it 5-2 Wisconsin.
20:00: It’s over. Eagles and Badgers on Saturday night. It’s been fun!