Wednesday, January 27, 2016
Wednesday, August 12, 2015
According to USCHO.com, 30 players chose to leave their schools early, a majority of which were juniors with just one year left to play. However, there were five freshman who decided to leave after one year, including second overall pick in this year's entry draft, Jack Eichel. Now I do understand that these top NHL draft picks want to be sure that a serious injury doesn't ruin their professional dreams, but seriously. You go to college to play the sport and the university you are playing at is investing time and money in you. Now I'm not saying athletes should stay all four years, but they should spend at least three years with their school of choice.
Another interesting number found off of USCHO.com, 20 of the 59 schools were effected by early departures. Of those 20 schools, 10 of them saw more then one player leave for the NHL. Now I know that doesn't seem like a lot of players considering each of the 59 teams is allowed to roster up to 25 athletes, however top programs like North Dakota, Minnesota, and Boston University have rarely seen an entire class stick together all four seasons since the turn of the century, if at all.
For example, look at a team like North Dakota. This season saw the departures of juniors Zane McIntyre and Jordan Schmaltz to their respective pro teams. The year before, they lost Rocco Grimaldi to Florida, who was a red shirt sophomore at the time, and three seasons ago, would lose junior Derek Forbort to a pro contract. The list just goes on from there.
Maybe someday more athletes will once again decide to play all four seasons of NCAA hockey, but for now, senior classes keep getting smaller and smaller, and the sizes of the incoming freshman classes just keep growing in size.
Sunday, April 12, 2015
Sunday, February 22, 2015
If the NCAA playoffs started today, six-of-eight NCHC teams would make the NCAA tournament. That's the best of any of the six leagues. Also, the more NCHC teams that are number one seeds will mean that they will have to go to separate regionals and can't be double up. Currently, three-of-four are NCHC teams.
Wednesday, July 30, 2014
Looking ahead to the season upon us, one must look at who left early, and from where, and who has the best incoming freshman. You have your usual suspects as one might imagine, with Boston College, Minnesota, and North Dakota probably being in the top 10 all season long, barring the typical first half North Dakota funk they always seem to have. Union, the defending national champs, is a team that I don't know what to think about. They proved that if you have a good core of players, and believe in your coach/team, great things can happen.
Michigan looks like they are back on the upswing once again, but their usual Big 10 football rival,
One also has to wonder about Boston University and if they will crawl back up the rankings again, or if they will stay out of the tournament picture like last season. Only time will tell.
Once again, the NCHC looks to be the powerhouse conference, with the possibility of sending at least five teams to the tournament once again. Miami has their top players returning this season, and are once again among the favorites to win the conference in preseason polls. However, they said that last season too and you saw how that ended up.
Minnesota, the College Hockey News number one team coming into this coming season in their very preseason poll release, looks to gain revenge after their national title game flop against Union. The always tough Golden Gophers
Adam Wilcox, and Kyle Rau, Minnesota is looking for banner number six to hang up in their barn once the season is over.
Finally, a team I know much more about, North Dakota. With three of five incoming freshman being drafted at this years NHL Draft, they return a line-up that has a lot of options.
If you asked me to pick a national champion right now, I'd have to flip a coin between North Dakota and Minnesota, but the season is very long and a lot can happen. Ask me this question at the start of the second half and I might have a different answer for you.
Thursday, June 05, 2014
Hand Pass by Faceoff Player – The players taking a faceoff are not allowed to use their hand to play the puck. A violation of this rule will result in a minor penalty, similar to the NHL rule.One of the new rule changes that I like is the new rule where if the net becomes dislodged during a penalty shot or shootout, the referee “shall” award a goal or another shot to the shooter. Last season, when Minnesota was playing Michigan State the game was tied and the two teams went to a shootout. With the game tied 2-2, Michigan State forward Joe Cox appeared to have scored a good goal during the shootout. However, after further review, the referee ruled that Gopher goalie Adam Wilcox knocked the net off its' moorings before Cox scored. (Video below).
Faceoff Procedure – The defending team’s faceoff player shall be required to put the stick down first. Previously, the attacking team was required to do so. Center ice faceoffs will continue to require the visiting team to put the stick down first.
Goal pegs – Ten-inch goal pegs that are anchored into the ice or floor must be in place at all NCAA levels by the 2016-17 season.
Faceoff Location – Offensive Scoring Opportunity: If the offensive team is attempting to score and the puck goes out of play – the faceoff will remain in the attacking zone.
Faceoff Location – High stick/hand pass: In these cases, the ensuing faceoff will be one zone closer to offending team’s goal.
Video Replay – Several changes were made to the criteria and process:
• It is reviewable to determine if a goal was scored before a penalty occurred.
• If an offsides or too many men on the ice penalty is missed and a goal is scored, it is reviewable until the puck leaves the offensive zone. This replaces the previous wording that only allowed the review to occur if the missed play directly led to a goal.
• It was clarified that video review may be used without the restriction of games that are being broadcast on television.
Penalty Shot/Shootout – During a shootout or penalty shot, if the goal becomes dislodged by the goalkeeper, the referee shall either award a goal (if intentional or if the goal was obvious and imminent) or allow the team to shoot again.
Penalty Shot – If a player that is awarded a penalty shot is injured and unable to take the shot, one of the players on the ice at the time of the infraction shall be chosen to shoot.
Look-Up Line – The committee approved the use of a warning-track style line intended to positively impact safety near the boards. The use of this line will not be mandatory, but is permissible.
Sunday, April 13, 2014
Wow! What a game last night. IMHO, this was one of the better Frozen Four championship games that I have seen. Some might say that the improbable happened last night. Union College with one NHL draft choice, and no scholarships, beat the mighty Golden Gophers 7-4. Just for the record, the Gophers have 14 NHL draft choices on their roster.
Friday, April 11, 2014
Sunday, April 06, 2014
I am surprised at after all of these years, four to be exact, this hit is still a topic discussion on message boards. This check in question happened on March 13, 2010. Yep, no doubt it, this was a bad,and dangerous hit, but Frattin is no Matt Cooke and he was given a one-game suspension for this hit. I laugh at the suggestions that he should be thrown out of hockey for life.
Also, contrary to public opinion, North Dakota is no longer a bunch of knuckle dragging Neanderthal goons, as some opposition fans like to call them. They're not angels either. UND is ranked 18 out of 59 teams in Penalty Minutes, and averages 12.9 minutes per game. Compared to team of the past, that's not very high.
If you haven't been paying attention to UND hockey, they've changed the way they play. Gone are the big thumpers, UND is now more of a skating team, they play a smart tenacious checking game. Defensively, UND is the top scoring defensive teams in the nation, averaging 2.76 points per game.
Since NCAA went to current format in 2003, Minnesota & BC are 19-1 in regionals in their home state, 7-8 in regionals out of state.
— Schlossman (@SchlossmanGF) April 6, 2014
Gophers have played in 4 Twin Cities regionals, made Frozen Four all 4 times (8-0). They've played in 5 elsewhere, made 0 FFs (2-5).This kind of piggy backs Brad's tweet. I always liked the argument that the Xcel Energy Center is not a home game for the Minnesota Gophers. Yep, and Worcester isn't a home game for the Eagles either right? The Xcel Energy Center is about seven miles from the University of Minnesota's campus.
— Schlossman (@SchlossmanGF) April 6, 2014
Breaking it down further, after winning the 2014 NCAA West Regional, the Minnesota Golden Gophers are now 23-13-0 all-time at the Xcel Energy Center. That's a .639 winning percentage. The Gophers had a (3-1-1, .700) record this season, their only loss, was to the Ohio State Buckeyes (3-1)in the Big Ten Hockey Tourney.
Tuesday, April 01, 2014
First we have the 2007 West Regional championship goal scored by Chris Porter. Porter scored the goal at 11:43 of the first overtime against none other then the hated Minnesota Golden Gophers. This would send the Sioux to the Frozen Four to face Boston College.
Now we have the most recent Connor Gaarder 2OT winner against Ferris State last weekend. This goal sent UND to their 20th Frozen Four in school history and the sixth one for head coach Dave Hakstol. Gaarder took the loose puck out front and shoved it five hole on the Hobey Baker finalist Motte to win the game for the good guys.
Let me hear your vote UND fans. Either comment your response here or send them to my Twitter handle @siouxhockey33. I know you all will have an opinion on this.
Sunday, March 30, 2014
Saturday, March 29, 2014
What does your bracket look like this morning... I picked the Quinnipiac and Providence game wrong.
Friday, March 28, 2014
Series history: There’s definitely a history between the two teams. Coming into this weekend, the University of North Dakota has never lost to Wisconsin during the NCAA playoffs. Historically, UND is 2-0 against the Badgers in the NCAA tournament.
First meeting: UND beat Wisconsin 5-2 during the 1982 NCAA Championship game. Second meeting: UND beat Wisconsin 3-2 in overtime in the 2008 Midwest Regional Championship game. Andrew Kozek scored the game winning goal at the 1:47 mark of the first overtime to give UND the regional Championship.
Wisconsin swept the Colorado College Tigers (4-1 W, 4-3 W O.T.)
UND was 4-1-0 against the Colorado College Tigers (5-3 W, 3-2 W, 4-2 W, 2-3 L O.T. and 4-3 W)
Wisconsin was 2-0 against Northern Michigan (5-2 W, 2-1 W)
UND was 2-0 against Northern Michigan (3-2 W, 3-1 W)
North Dakota was 14-7-1 at home and 8-5-2 on the road. Neutral site 1-1.
2-6-1 when they trail after one period
8-3-1 when tied after one period
5-9-0 when they trail after one period
Wednesday, March 26, 2014
Thursday, March 20, 2014
First lets start with the NCHC Player of the Year, Josh Archibald. Archibald would lead the NCHC in goals with 23 and win the league scoring title with 32 points in 24 league games. The Pittsburgh Penguins draft pick also would record two hat tricks this season, one coming against North Dakota at the Ralph in UNO's 6-3 Saturday night victory over North Dakota. Along with Player of the Year, Archibald would also be named Forward of the Year for these same reasons. It's a shame UNO will not make the NCAA tournament because Archibald would be a lot of fun to watch leading his team towards the Frozen Four in Philly come April.
Also taking home two individual awards in this inaugural NCHC season would be Nic Dowd of St. Cloud State. The senior, and LA Kings prospect, would land him the Scholar Athlete of the Year and the league's top defensive forward honors. Dowd would finish sixth in league scoring with 25 points in 24 league games played. The SCSU forward would also finish at a +12 this season and block 19 shots during conference play.
Another player with double the fun for awards this year would be Denver defenseman Joey LaLeggia. He would earn himself Offensive Defenseman of the year and Defenseman of the year. He finished tied for the conference lead in goals scored by a defenseman with six and started off his season with a three game goal scoring streak. LaLeggia would finish the season with 13 points in conference play and would block 23 shots in 19 league games played out of 24 possible.
The Goalie of the Year honors went to Denver's Sam Brittain. He would lead the NCHC with an outstanding .931 save percentage and would claim two of his four shutouts in NCHC play, which would also lead all league goalies. Brittain was named goalie of the week a record six times this season and his 686 saves in league play would be an amazing 81 more saves then any other NCHC goalie would make.
This year's Rookie of the Year, and much deserving Rookie of the Year, was awarded to Colorado College defenseman Jacob Slavin. The Freshman would tie the league best in defenseman scoring with 19 points, and would rank third in all freshman scoring. He would also lead all defenseman with 14 assists, and that would also be good for second among all league freshman. A 2014 World Junior representative, Slavin would show that he is going to be a top blue liner in this conference in his next few years at CC.
Finally, the last major award was the Herb Brooks Coach of the Year. SCSU's Bob Motzko would win the award, leading St. Cloud to the very first Penrose Cup this year. The Huskies would earn 15 conference wins,six non conference wins, and were scoring just under four goals a game this season. Although the Huskies would have a slumpish run towards the end of the regular season, and get swept by Miami in the first round of playoffs, this SCSU team could very well see play in the Frozen Four once again this season, especially with the week off to rest, get healthy, and have some good practice time before the NCAA tournament begins next weekend.
Now for who missed out. The only big one in my mind that missed out is North Dakota defenseman Dillon Simpson. Simpson was a lot of peoples choice for defenseman of the year, especially since he rarely made a defensive error that would cost North Dakota. In last weekend's series, Simpson and his d partner Jordan Schmaltz would combine for 21 blocked shots in the three games. If there was anyone left out it is for sure the North Dakota senior captain.
Sunday, March 16, 2014
Perhaps what everyone involved with NCAA women's hockey will call the true NCAA title game, Minnesota vs. Wisconsin, will be the most anticipated match-up in this tournament. Minnesota, who has been the outright number 1 for most of the last three seasons now, will look to punch their ticket to a third straight national title, but Wisconsin looks to say otherwise.
Wisconsin, who has four national championships and most recent in 2011, was runner-up to Minnesota in the 2012 title game and looks for a little revenge against the Golden Gophers. They are the four seed, in what many called a flawed pairwise ranking system, placing them on the same side of the bracket, avoiding a possible national title game rematch.
The winner of this years national championship will most likely come from this highly anticipated match-up next weekend and a big thing that will help in favor of the Wisconsin Badgers is that the game is being played at a neutral site in Hamden, Conn. Both Minnesota and Wisconsin were nearly unbeatable at home this season, with Minnesota just losing once at home to North Dakota, and Wisconsin with only four home losses, two to Minnesota, and one each to North Dakota and Minnesota State.
This match-up will be a hard fought game and I don't see it being decided by more then one goal, unless an empty netter is scored by either team. I am going to have to pick Minnesota to come out on top of this one, winning 2-1 and advancing them to their third straight national championship game.
On the other side of the bracket we have number 3 Clarkson vs. Mercyhurst, who upset Cornell to advance to the Frozen Four this season. Clarkson is looking to advance to their very first women's National Championship game in team history as Mercyhurst is looking to return for only the second time in school history.
The two schools would have an early season non conference series all the way back in October and Mercyhurst would allow just one goal against a very tough Clarkson squad. Getting shutout in game one, and skating to a tie in game two, Clarkson is looking for some revenge against a Mercyhurst team who is riding a lot of momentum coming into this weekend's Frozen Four.
Since the holiday break was over, Clarkson went a very impressive 15-1-3, showing what you have to do to get things done down the stretch run. Some victories one should note during this time is a 3-1 victory at home against Cornell, and a 2-1 road victory against Harvard.
I am still pondering on how Mercyhurst would make the NCAA tournament this season if they didn't win their regular season conference title, and even be seeded higher then a very good Boston University squad. Mercyhurst comes from a very weak CHA conference and would lose the conference tournament championship to RIT in double overtime. Mercyhurst's only win of note would be their 2-0 road victory against Clarkson and are looking to keep this Cinderella story alive for just two more games.
With Mercyhurst riding a lot of momentum after their huge upset of Cornell, there is always that chance that they could do the same against Clarkson, but this would be very highly unlikely. Clarkson wins this one 4-1 and advances to the title game to meet up with a very tough Minnesota who is looking to win their third straight title.
Much like Friday night, UND would find themselves in a hole and having to make their way out of it once again. With an early second period goal for Colorado College, they looked to put North Dakota away and extend this to a third game Sunday night. However, about two and a half minutes after CC would go up 2-0, UND sophomore Drake Caggiula would find the twine and put North Dakota on the board.
As the clock would become the enemy of North Dakota in the third, coach Dave Hakstol would look for a late spark in his team, and who better to look to then your top line, the "Funky Bunch" line as I like to call them, of Drake Caggiula, Mark MacMillian, and Michael Parks. The line would combine for five points in the series opener, and with Caggiula already on the board in this one, why not?
With just under four minutes remaining in the third, MacMillian and Caggiula would factor in on Jordan Schmaltz's game tying goal and the Ralph would erupt. With the late goal, the fans, and the guys sitting on the bench would hope that momentum would shift in their favor heading into the overtime period.
Exactly seven minutes into the first overtime, the game would be over when CC freshman Alex Roos would find a hole and fire the puck past Zane Gothberg. This game would be just the second time in Gothberg's last 18 starts that he would allow three or more goals.
Tonight is a must win for UND if they look to make the tournament for a 12th straight season, and want to fight for the inaugural NCHC Frozen Face-Off championship.
Monday, March 03, 2014
Worcester1. Boston College vs. 4. Cornell
2. Quinnipiac vs. 3. Michigan
Bridgeport1. Union vs. 4. Vermont
2. Ferris State vs. 3. Providence
Minneapolis1. Minnesota vs. 4. Mercyhurst
2. UMass Lowell vs. 3. North Dakota
Cincinnati1. St. Cloud State vs. 4. Northeastern
2. Wisconsin vs. 3. Notre Dame
13 Colgate vs. 2 Minnesota
10 North Dakota vs. 6 Wisconsin
14 Michigan vs. 4 Ferris State
12 Vermont vs. 5 St. Cloud State
16 Mercyhurst vs. 1 Boston College
11 Cornell vs. 8 Massachusetts-Lowell
15 Notre Dame vs. 3 Union
9 Northeastern vs. 7 Quinnipiac
Tuesday, February 25, 2014
Mick Hatten, Saint Cloud Time -- Tickets for this weekend’s North Dakota at St. Cloud State men’s hockey series are getting difficult to come by, particularly for the Saturday night game at the Herb Brooks National Hockey Center.
Tenth-ranked North Dakota and fifth-ranked St. Cloud State go into the weekend tied for the lead in the National Collegiate Hockey Conference, which is in its inaugural season. There are four games left in the regular season and the teams moved into a tie for the lead last weekend.
“This is always a big series for us and sales are always high,” said Chad Sheetz, St. Cloud State’s assistant director of athletic business & finance operations. “After Christmas, sales really started to pick up.”
As of about 11:30 a.m. Tuesday, there were 599 remaining standing-room only tickets remaining for Saturday’s game, which starts at 7:07 p.m.
There are about 450 tickets available for Friday’s game.
Friday’s game has the unusual starting time of 8:07 p.m. because the game will be on a national telecast. Friday’s game will be televised on CBS Sports Network (Charter Channel 412, Direct TV Channel 221 and Dish Network Channel 158).
Series ticket packages are reserved seating and are $40 for adults, $20 for UND students and $20 for youth.Adult and youth series packages may be purchased in person at the UND Box Office at Ralph Engelstad Arena or online at (Ticket Master).
UND students may purchase up to four series packages and may do so in person at the UND Box Office at Ralph Engelstad Arena. A valid UND student ID must be presented with game ticket to gain admittance into each game.
Season ticket holders already received their NCHC Quarterfinal tickets as part of their season ticket package.
All unclaimed student tickets will become available to the general public as series packages on Saturday, March 1, beginning at 10 a.m. Central.