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Thursday, December 08, 2022

Badgers goalkeeper Jared Moe, a former gopher, prepares to face his former team

Badgers goalkeeper Jared Moe, a former gopher, prepares to face his former team

If he gets a start for the Wisconsin Badgers this weekend, which is likely, goalkeeper Jared Moe will travel down a road that Jack LaFontaine knows all too well.

The Pipe Beach Gophers men’s hockey team mainstay moved to the U after two seasons in Lafontaine, Michigan, and faced their former team five times in the previous season. Mo, a junior for the Badgers, is spending his first season at Cardinal and White after playing as a freshman and sophomore for the Gophers.

“It’s going to be hilarious… He’s a character. I know he’s going to come up to me in the warmup, and it’s going to be fun,” LaFontaine said of the potential reunion. “That’s my face. But brings a smile, and he’ll enjoy playing.”

The pair split time in the first half of the 2019-20 season, when both were newcomers to the U; Mo saw action in 16 games that season, leading 7-5-1 with 2.46 goals—against average, a .915 percent save and a shutout for Minnesota. Then LaFontaine took over the Gophers’ net, and last season Moe had only two non-conference starts (both victories over Arizona State).

Soon after the 2020-21 season ended, Mo entered the transfer portal and found a home with the Badgers. The New Prague left-handed 6-foot-3 goalkeeper has seen action in six of Wisconsin’s eight matches so far and holds a 1-3-0 record as a starter. Overall, he has a 2.45 GAA, .924 save percentage and one shutout in his six games for Wisconsin.

LaFontaine has been vocal in defending Moe’s transfer decision, asking for more play time, even if it was for Gopher’s top conference rival, and other former teammates being good-natured about a potential on-ice reunion. are.

“When I heard he was transferring this summer, I told him I knew I’d get two goals this year, at least,” joked Gophers defenseman Ben Brinkman.

On their way to winning their first modern-era Big Ten regular-season hockey title (by a few decimal points over the Gophers) last season, the Badgers went head-to-head against Minnesota 3–1–0, but the Gophers got the conference tournament title game. in the playoffs after defeating Wisconsin 6-4.

It is a dramatically different Badgers team that has lost its top four scorers, including Hobby Baker Award winner Cole Caufield, who scored 30 goals in 31 college games last year, then signed an NHL contract and went to Montreal. Helping the Canadiens made an immediate impact. Advance to the Stanley Cup Finals.

The 2021–22 Badgers have started 3-5-0, and have struggled with the Huskies, lost a pair at home to Michigan Tech, and swept the top order at St. Cloud State two weeks ago. . They are coming off their biggest win of the youth season, a 4-2 win at Michigan last weekend.

“We have to start well. They’re just going to get some momentum,” said Gophers coach Bob Motzko. “It’s a big win for them, beating Michigan, as well as rolling out Minnesota, a smaller rival there, So we have to be on our toes. We are looking forward to the road trip.”

brief

After playing their 2020-21 games at Laban Arena – the home rink for their women’s hockey team – the Badgers men are back at the Kohl’s Center for 2021-22. It has 15,359 seats for hockey and is the largest on-campus rink in the country. Friday’s game begins at 7 p.m., while Saturday night’s first face-off takes place at 8 p.m. Both games will be called into action by Bally Sports North with the broadcast team of Brian Posick and Bill Brophy. On the radio, the Gophers can be heard on a call with Wally Shaver and Frank Mazzoko at 1130 AM/103.5 FM.

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