St. Petersburg Times Online: Sports
Place an Ad Calendars Classified Forums Sports Weather
Print story Subscribe to the Times


Gophers repeat for 5th hockey title

©Associated Press
April 13, 2003

BUFFALO, N.Y. -- Thomas Vanek came up big again for Minnesota -- in the biggest game of his career Saturday night.

The Austrian freshman sparked a four-goal third period, leading Minnesota to the NCAA hockey championship with a 5-1 win over New Hampshire.

It was Vanek's fifth winner this season, including in overtime Thursday night in a 3-2 semifinal victory against Michigan.

Barry Tallackson scored twice against New Hampshire, including an empty-netter, as the Golden Gophers became the first team to repeat since Boston University won in 1971 and '72.

Matt DeMarchi and Jon Waibel also scored, and Travis Weber stopped 26 shots. The Gophers (30-8-9) joined Wisconsin and Denver with five titles. Michigan is first with nine, followed by North Dakota with seven.

Sean Collins scored for New Hampshire (28-8-6), which was denied its first championship despite making its fourth Final Four appearance in six years and seventh overall. The Wildcats lost 3-2 in overtime to Maine in 1999 in their other final appearance.

Of Vanek's 31 goals, 17 have come in third period or overtime.

"The championship means so much to me," said Vanek, selected most outstanding player. "As for the third-period goals, I don't know. When we're tied or down, I just look at my linemates and say, 'Hey, we've got to step up.' And most of the time it works out. Luck, I don't know."

There was nothing lucky about this one as Vanek put the Gophers ahead for good 8:14 into the third period.

"He's a differencemaker," Gophers coach Don Lucia said of Vanek. "And that's why you work hard to recruit players like that because if Thomas is playing at Michigan or some other program, maybe they're sitting here. And one or two big-time players can make all the difference."

It was the largest margin of victory in a championship since Boston beat Maine 6-2 in 1995.

Print story Subscribe to the Times

Back to Sports
Back to Top

© 2006 • All Rights Reserved • Tampa Bay Times
490 First Avenue South • St. Petersburg, FL 33701 • 727-893-8111

From the Times sports desk
  • Hubert Mizell: New 'recruits' have Spurrier expecting more
  • Gary Shelton: Woods might get down, but never count him out
  • John Romano: Lightning taken to school, but will it learn?

  • Golf
  • Protests more bark than bite with low attendance
  • No lead is safe at Augusta
  • Mickelson is within reach of 1st major
  • From cut line to leaderboard

  • Motorsports
  • Jekyll and Hyde out at Martinsville
  • Final-lap pass helps Green win

  • Baseball
  • Small-market success at start
  • Pirates' Giles on 15-day DL
  • Tigers win, want to take series
  • NL: Wood's 13 strikeouts lift Cubs
  • AL: Red Sox lose in Martinez's worst game

  • NHL
  • Detroit sinks into 2-0 hole

  • Colleges
  • Gophers repeat for 5th hockey title
  • Gators please Zook, but QB race still on
  • Rix settles into role as FSU leader
  • Banks takes charge to lead White to victory

  • Running
  • USF's Quinn picks up the pace

  • In brief
  • Ford gets Wooden Award

  • Horses
  • Frankel's top two turn Derby darlings

  • NBA
  • Magic wins it in homestretch

  • Preps
  • Rally ends Knights' frustration
  • Pirates wrap up GCAC race

  • Your turn
  • Rays will turn it around

  • Rays
  • It's all bad in Rays loss
  • Piniella signals change in the pitch selection
  • 'I'm a different person now'
  • Piniella: Walks are important
  • Got a minute? With Damian Rolls

  • Bucs
  • Tapping Cleveland pipeline

  • Lightning
  • Halfway to nowhere
  • Behind the scenes
  • Caps stars still hard to contain
  • Penalties help cost Lightning
  • Sound bites
  • NHL: Slapshots

  • From the wire

    From the state sports wire
  • Jacksonville's Spicer placed on IR after leg surgery
  • FIU-Western Kentucky game postponed because of Jeanne
  • Brown anxious to face old team for first time
  • Dolphins' desperate defense readies for Roethlisberger
  • Former Sarasota lineman sheds tough-guy image with Michigan
  • Rothstein rejoins Heat as assistant
  • No. 16 Florida has history on its side against Kentucky
  • FSU and Clemson QBs both off to slow starts