WCHA Final Five tickets on sale now

CC Alexander Krushelnyski roadI assume the time announced is Central Time, meaning 9 a.m. Mountain, when the press release arrived.

From the WCHA …

SAINT PAUL, Minn. – Xcel Energy Center and the Western Collegiate Hockey Association (WCHA) announced today that all tournament packages for the 2013 Red Baron WCHA Final Five, to be held March 21-23 at Xcel Energy Center, go on sale at 10 a.m. today, Monday, Dec. 10. All tournament packages are $165 and $80 and can be purchased at the Xcel Energy Center Box Office, Ticketmaster Ticket Centers, charge by phone at 800-745-3000 or online at www.ticketmaster.com. To charge by phone using Ticketmaster TDD/TTY, call 800-359-2525. Groups (10+) call 651-312-3486.
Fans can celebrate college hockey with music, interactive games, food, beverages and more at the WCHA Fan Fest Friday, March 22 and Saturday, March 23 from 4:30-6:30 p.m. at the Bud Light Blue Line Bar and Grill (Xcel Energy Center – Gate 4). Cheerleaders, mascots and WCHA pep bands will also be present at this event with live music from Uncle Chunk on Friday and Playback on Saturday. The WCHA Fan Fest is free and open to the public.
College hockey fans will once again have the opportunity to get in on the tournament action with the return of the “Pick Your Final Five Sweepstakes.” Fans who enter will have a chance to win a prize of four (4) ticket packages to the 2014 WCHA Final Five.
Here’s how the sweepstakes works:
  • Visit www.xcelenergycenter.com/WCHA starting at 12:01 a.m. CT on Monday, Dec. 10.
  • Choose the six (6) WCHA teams you predict will make it to the 2013 Red Baron WCHA Final Five.
  • Choose the two (2) teams you predict will make the Championship game.
  • Choose the 2013 Red Baron WCHA Championship winning team.
  • Guess how many total goals will be scored during the 2013 Red Baron WCHA Final Five.
  • If more than one (1) person correctly answers all four (4) questions, all contestants with correct answers will be entered into a random drawing to determine the prize winner. If no one correctly answers all four (4) questions, those persons that answer the most number of questions correctly will be entered into a random drawing to determine the winner. The contest begins at 12:01 a.m. CT on Monday, Dec. 10, 2012, and ends at 11:59 p.m. CT on Friday, March 8, 2013. The winner will be announced by noon CT on Sunday, March 24, 2013.
  • NO PURCHASE NECESSARY.  The “Pick Your Final Five Sweepstakes” is subject in all respects to the complete Official Rules available at www.xcelenergycenter.com or by sending a S.A.S.E. to “Pick Your Final Five Sweepstakes – Rules Request”, c/o Saint Paul Arena Company, LLC, 175 W. Kellogg Blvd., Ste. 501, St. Paul, Minnesota  55102.  Open only to entrants who, as of the entry date, are permanent legal residents of the 50 United States or the District of Columbia who are at least 18 years old.  Void outside the 50 United States and the District of Columbia, and where prohibited or restricted by law.  Sweepstakes entry period begins at 12:01 a.m. Central Time (“CT”) on Dec. 10, 2012 and ends at 11:59 p.m. CT on March 8, 2013.  LIMIT: One (1) entry per person (regardless of method of entry) or address (physical or email).  Entry methods, limits, restrictions and instructions, and prize information and restrictions are set forth in the Official Rules.  Sponsor: Saint Paul Arena Company, LLC, 175 W. Kellogg Blvd., Ste. 501, St. Paul, Minnesota  55102. Click here to view complete Official Rules.

Wednesday reading: North Dakota, BSU, SCSU, Mankato

Two North Dakota players will be punished for minor in possession arrests. Former UND captain Mario Lamoureux signed with ECHL Ontario (Calif.).

The UND athletic department student employees produce a very good video about the past season for its fans that also serves as a teaser for the upcoming season.

Hockey East will expand its playoffs format starting in 2013-14.

Bemidji State held its Select A Seat promotion Tuesday night.

St. Cloud State rookie Joey Benik is expected to be an impact player for the Huskies.

MSU-Mankato continues to struggle to get state funding for much needed arena improvements.

Here’s my previous post with the NBC Sports Network’s college hockey broadcast scheduled, including a Jan. 4 date at Nebraska Omaha for Colorado College. Here is hoping CBS SN announces its schedule soon.

Friday reading: Connelly, Lampl, NHL Draft, UND, WCHA, UConn

Former Tiger Brian Connelly, pictured, talks about the 2011-12 season in this video. Cody Lampl was traded to Toledo of the ECHL recently.

Here is a look at past USHL players in the NHL Draft. Here is a Denver perspective and more on eligible college players.

I posted this earlier this week but here is my article on Hunter Fejes, Jaccob Slavin and Josh Thorimbert’s chances. Fejes gets some love from College Hockey News.

Inside College Hockey rates current college players’ chances of being selected and has some mock drafts for the first two rounds. UND recruit Jordan Schmaltz is profiled.

Here are some links about North Dakota players including that Rocco Grimaldi will be in the Panthers evaluation camp this summer. UND’s Danny Kristo plans to turn pro after his senior season is over.

The WCHA’s Alaska Plan continues to create anxiety for the 2013-14 league members.

UConn’s move to Hockey East was confirmed Thursday afternoon.

The new Minnesota athletic director will not have to spend much time worrying about the hockey program.

Here is a look at the early frontrunners for the vacant UMass head coaching gig.

DU’s Rhett Rakshani is headed to Sweden despite a good AHL career. The Pioneers will be the fourth team in the 2013 GLI this December.

Anchorage got a commitment from a local player.

Thursday reading: Fundraisers, Anchorage defections, Bachman, Rau, Defending The Blue Line, Alaska Plan reaction, St. Cloud State profile

The Hockey and Hearts Celebrity Golf Tournament was held at the Lynbrook Golf Course in Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan on Monday with 12 various sports celebrities, including (L-R) Mike Blaisdell, Logan Pyett, Garth Murray, Brandon Gromley, Luke Schenn, Jaden Schwartz, Keith Aulie, Tyler Bozak, Mark McMorris, Don McMorris, Roger Aldag and Bob Poley. The event raised $150,000.

Three Alaska-Anchorage players have left the program this offseason.

Dallas has made an offer to restricted free agent and former Tiger Richard Bachman. Chad Rau has signed a two-way deal (terms not disclosed) with the Wild organization as has UND’s Chay Genoway.

Here is a feature on the Defending the Blue Line organizer. Here is a recap of the event.

Here is a blog opinion on the WCHA’s Alaska Plan which is looking more and more temporary with each story published on it.

Here is a detailed look at St. Cloud State by the RPI fan blog.

Two Division III powerhouses are changing conferences.

Wednesday reading: Adam, Testwuide, Holmstrom, UND, UMass job

Louisville Police Officer Don Adam is also a WCHA hockey referee. Adam was photographed at work Tuesday afternoon, June 12, 2012. Karl Gehring/The Denver Post

Here is a well-done feature on WCHA referee Don Adam, pictured, whose day job is as a City of Louisville police officer.

The Flyers extended a contract offer to Ben Holmstrom but not former Tiger Mike Testwuide. It looks like the former CC captain will be a free agent after July 1.

UND nickname supporters file another appeal.

The Mankato beat writer talks about the WCHA’s Alaska Plan for the 2014 playoffs.

Suddenly the UMass head coaching job is open.

The incoming Wisconsin freshmen are coming in this week to start summer school.

Monday reading: Playoffs, Bachman, Lagrone, Mexico, Eaves

WCHA commissioner Bruce McLeod said the Alaska Plan for the 2014 playoffs may change. It had been reported that Anchorage and Fairbanks would play in the first round every season, but that would change if one is the top seed and gets a bye to the Final Five tournament, wherever that may be held.

The Alaska-Anchorage athletic director was the only one who voted against the Alaska Plan.

Here are more details about the possible Final Five venues from the Mining Gazette in Houghton, Mich.

Here is some more reaction.

It looks like former Tiger Richard Bachman will have some very tough competition for the Stars backup job.

Future Tiger Duggie Lagrone advanced to the Des Moines training camp roster.

A Mexico-born player, pictured, tries to make USHL Sioux City roster.

Here is some analysis on the retiring Minnesota athletic director.

Miami announced its schedule for its final season in the CCHA.

This Canadian hockey writer thinks Wisconsin coach Mike Eaves should get a hard look from the Capitals.

The Gazette weighs in on the Sioux nickname vote.

From the Thunder Bay. Ont. newspaper …

During Thursday’s dinner, Dr. George Gwozdecky was named the recipient of the Chris Ferguson Sr. Memorial Award for his service as a Thunder Bay sports builder. Gwozdecky, the father of University of Denver men’s hockey head coach George Jr., was director and doctor of sports organizations in soccer, tennis, hockey, football, running and water skiing.
Dr. Gwozdecky, who was inducted into the Northwestern Ontario Sports Hall of Fame in 1988, is a member of the Canadian Council of Sports Medicine and was the Chief Medical Officer for Team Canada at the 1976 Summer Olympics in Montreal.

Weekend reading: Interesting 2014 WCHA playoff format, North Dakota nickname, Jaden and Mandi Schwartz, Parise, Big 10

The WCHA announced its nine-team playoff format which includes Anchorage and Fairbanks playing in a best-of-three first-round series every time unless one is the No. 1 seed.

It is clearly a cost-cutting measure so the league does not have to pay for two teams’ round trips to or from Alaska, but could make for some weird playoff scenarios in March 2014.

Here are more details from the Mankato beat writer and a reaction from the UND reporter.

Also, there was no word about any move toward adding Alabama Huntsville. Too bad. There is a lot of unfinished business ahead for the new-look WCHA. There was no word on the postseason venue either.

The state Board of Higher Education has directed the University of North Dakota to retire its Fighting Sioux nickname. State residents voted overwhelmingly earlier this week to uphold the Legislature’s repeal of a state law requiring the school to use the nickname. The moniker that the NCAA finds offensive had been brought out of retirement for a second time while the measure was decided.

Board President Grant Shaft, of Grand Forks, says there’s not much more that can be said about the issue that hasn’t been said already. UND will be asked to report its progress at a later date.

Former Tiger Jaden Schwartz will get to see the CHL’s Memorial Cup firsthand this week.

One of Mandi Schwartz‘s former teammates is a finalist for a league award in her honor.

The Minnesota Wild keep being mentioned as the possible new homes for free agents Ryan Sutter and Zach Parise. This may be a case of wishful thinking judging from this NHL.com interview by Parise.

Here is a feature on UNO recruit Brian Cooper of Anchorage.

The Big Ten paid out $24,6 million to its member schools.

The Fargo arena is in financial trouble. The Dartmouth women add an assistant.

Division III New England ran afoul of the NCAA’s financial aid rules. UMass has lost its radio home.

The dream is one step closer to fruition: the Penn State club hockey web site shut down voluntarily since the varsity program is handled by the university. Follow TYT for PSU updates.

Here is a look at the Mercyhurst program.

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