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Postgame Quotes: No. 14 Wisconsin vs. No. 8 Michigan



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Postgame Quotes
No. 14 Wisconsin vs. No. 8 Michigan
Jan. 11, 2014
Kohl Center - Madison, Wis.

Head Coach Mike Eaves

On what lead to the penalties at the end of the third period:
“Just competiveness. When you play a physical game, there’s a competitive level that comes out and frustration arises. That’s all that was.”

On sweeping the series and the rivalry:
“We walked out tonight and the Kohl Center was almost 13,000-14,000 fans. Why does that happen? Is that Big Ten? Are people wanting to see Big Ten hockey again? I don’t know, but that was a great product out there tonight. I think that the rivalry is back. We go there in two, three weeks and Yost Field House is going to be a just a buzz. It will be great hockey again, so that speaks well for the Big Ten. That’s kind of what the hope was, that the rivals would strike up again and that brings back a lot of tradition. That’s what ties people to college sports in general.”

On where the game turned in his mind:
“It’s interesting if you break it down very quickly, is the fact in the first period, it could have been three, four to nothing us. The puck was behind the goalie. He didn’t know where it was. Had we stopped on the goal line a couple times, had the referee worked a little harder to find the puck, we might have slide a couple pucks in behind. But as it was, we didn’t. It’s 1-0. They took the play in the second. We were hanging on for a while. They tied it up and we got a very timely goal by Chase Drake. That settled us down a little bit. We lost our poise and confidence with the puck a little bit. But I thought in the third period we did the things that we talked about needing to do and the goal by Joseph (LaBate) was a big time goal. We did the right things. We had a lot of people contribute tonight and when you’re going to win these big games, that has to happen.”

On what he saw differently out of Michigan’s play tonight:
“Nothing, really nothing. We knew that they were going to compete at a different level just because of the fact that it’s human nature when you get beat to come back even with a bigger burr in your bottom. They came out with all that intent and we matched it in the first. They had it in the second. If you talk to any coach in any sport, they’ll talk about the flows of the game and we could hear our guys in the second period. We needed to push back. We needed to meet what they were giving us. That goal by Chase (Drake) really helped us settle down.”

On this weekend being a good building block for the rest of the season:
“Just in terms of moving closer and identifying and confirming what our team identity is, how we played against a top opponent like this really goes a long way in figuring out how to win battles. We talked to the kids how every game is riddle with no textbook answers and we found those answers this weekend as a group of people.

On Joel Rumpel’s play this weekend:
“I think he was better tonight. He was sharper in his movements. He was good. I thought last night’s game was about getting into game mode. Some of the dump-ins last night he could have gotten for us and didn’t. Tonight he was shaper.”

Wisconsin Players

Senior defenseman Frankie Simonelli

On how much the dislike level went up tonight between the Wisconsin and Michigan teams:
“It was a hardnosed game and we’re starting to create a little rivalry there between us and Michigan. We’re excited about it. We’re excited to go back to Michigan in a few weeks and play at their barn, have some more high energy games like that.”

On if there was something that caused tempers to rise at the end of the third period:
“Mark (Zengerle) got hit pretty late after the whistle. We responded and stuck up for our teammates there.”

On what this weekend’s wins does for the Badgers moving forward:
“It was big time. We took some good growth this week. We went through a lot as a team this week in practice and it paid off on the weekend. It definitely is a stepping stone toward where we need to be in championship caliber hockey that we need to be playing. From here on out with Big Ten play, it was a great weekend to start us off in the right direction.”

Junior defenseman Chase Drake

On scoring his goal and having the puck pop to his stick after a few UW shots on goal:
“I was kind of surprised it didn’t go in right away. Coach (Matt) Walsh had been talking with us to figure out spots at the right moment. I picked it, it just kind of squirted out and was on edge and I just got a lucky chip really.”

Junior forward Joesph LaBate

On if the game turned in the Badgers’ favor after Chase Drake’s goal:
“That was obviously a huge goal that gave us the lead and I think we were just riding the energy of the arena. It was a packed house and you can feel that when you’re on the ice. You can feel the excitement that the crowed is giving you. The whole team just built off of that.”

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