If Mark Zengerle never scored a goal during his senior season with the Wisconsin Badgers, he still would have finished fourth on the team in points. Yet, that final year, the Rochester, N.Y., native potted 10, the most during his time in Madison.
That 10th one proved the most valuable. During a net-front scramble in overtime, Zengerle tracked down an aimless puck and slipped it through a devastated Ohio State Buckeye goaltender. The goal earned the Badgers the first Big Ten Hockey championship and Zengerle the tournament MVP.
The goal against OSU seemed like the perfect culmination of his amateur career. The previous year, Zengerle simply had assisted (a trait he’s known better for) on the game-winner as Wisconsin also won the WCHA championship in its final appearance in that conference.
Before arriving in the capital of Dairyland, Zengerle, who played in the EJHL with the Syracuse Stars, had followed friend Conor Morrison to Salmon Arm of the BCHL. Conor’s father, David, was a scout and recommended the move to improve Zengerle’s standing. His two years in the league didn’t get him a contract or drafted, but he did finish with a 120-point season and an MVP award.