PWHL RECAP: Minnesota Stays Alive in First Playoff Win Over Toronto

Minnesota flips the script on Toronto and shuts them out in Game 3 victory.

PWHL RECAP: Minnesota Stays Alive in First Playoff Win Over Toronto
Credit: PWHL

PWHL Toronto headed to St. Paul, Minnesota Monday night to try and close out the first round of the PWHL playoffs, only to be shut out 2-0 and see the series push to game four.

Despite a tough road since international break, and going down two games in the series, Minnesota showed up on home ice for game three with a vengeance.

The game began as evenly matched as the last, with both teams earning chances early. It wasn't until 11:28 into the first period when Sarah Nurse took the game's first penalty for tripping, giving Minnesota a power play they could not capitalize on.

Kali Flanagan also sat for tripping at 14:34 and Minnesota was held scoreless again. Minnesota held Toronto to just two shots in the first period which is very unlike the team who has had a stellar few months and first two games of this series.

After another scoreless period between these two teams, it was Maggie Flaherty who scored first, giving Minnesota their first lead and first goal of the series at 2:12 in the second period. Liz Schepers and Claire Butorac both claimed assists on that goal. Flaherty had just one goal in the regular season against Ottawa.

Less than 10 minutes later, Denisa Křížová scored next for Minnesota, giving them a 2-0 lead at 8:39 of the second frame. Schepers collected her second point with her second assist of the night. Lee Stecklein claimed the secondary assist.

At 11:03, Renata Fast took a hooking penalty, which gave Minnesota another chance on the power play. However Toronto killed it off yet again.

Minnesota headed to the locker room after the second period up in shots 22-9 and with the momentum heavily in their favor. At 4:04, Michaela Cava took Minnesota's first penalty. She sat for two minutes for slashing.

Fast took her second penalty of the night, this time at 9:55 for hooking. This gave Minnesota yet another chance with the player-advantage but it was killed off.

Soon after the penalty expired, a hard hit on Natalie Spooner sent her to the locker room. With both teams fired up from the play and no call from the officials, they skated on.

With less than five minutes to go, Toronto headed to the power play after a call on Sophia Kunin for tripping at 15:04. After Minnesota killed that penalty off, time ticked down even further and with about two minutes to go, Toronto pulled Kristen Campbell from net in favor of the extra skater but they could not score.

After two scoreless games for Minnesota in this series, they flipped the script and handed Toronto a 2-0 loss to make the series 2-1. These two teams will battle again in game four on Wednesday night in Minnesota.