In the pros: J. Schwartz, Prosser, Crabb, Sterling, Testwuide fight video

ProsserFormer Tiger Jaden Schwartz is making a good impression on Blues coach Ken Hitchcock.

He is one of a number of young stars according to NHL.com who may benefit from their  time in the AHL while veterans played in the ECHL, overseas or tried to stay in game shape on their own.

Nate Prosser and Justin Falk look ready to be the Wild’s third defensive pair. Brian Connelly is injured.

Joey Crabb took part in this Q&A.

Brett Sterling scored a natural hat trick in just over eight minutes during the first period of a 3-1 win for AHL Chicago on Friday night.

Saturday reading: CC-UND video highlights; stories and column

CC Collett_CU1Here is the coverage from the Gazette and the Grand Forks Herald including a column about the motivated Tigers seeking redemption from last month’s  heartbreaking loss.

Here are game highlights for both teams provided by Goon’s World.

Monday reading: Slavin, North Dakota videos

slavin01_crop_exactThis blogger predicts which players are under consideration for the 2014 USA team at the world junior championships, including incoming Tiger Jaccob Slavin, pictured.

That would be great. I could use a work-related excuse when my wife asks me why I am waking up at 3 a.m. to watch hockey.

The folks at North Dakota spent Sunday compiling observations and highlight videos from this past weekend’s sweep of No. 20 Holy Cross. With the Packers and Vikings off, why not?

Here is a look back on UND’ sweep and other observations from around the nation by the esteemed Grand Forks Herald beat writer.

Here are video highlights from Game 1:

Here is video from Saturday’s more competitive game. Even with two losses, Holy Cross proved it should be ranked. I would expect it to stay in the USCHO Top 20 since a lot of “better teams” would get swept in Grand Forks too.

 

Friday reading: WJC, SCSU, Serratores, UConn, WCHA

Russia downed Team USA 2-1 in the Americans’ second game which is detailed here. Here is video of the lone USA goal by Michigan defenseman Jacob Trouba.

An injury to Michigan Tech’s Blake Piettila (no details available yet) on a late checking from behind penalty  bears watching by WCHA fans.

Here are four keys for Team USA at the world junior championships.

RPI 4, No. 14 St. Cloud State 3

ST. CLOUD — Mark McGowan snapped a 3-3 tie with 2:12 remaining to lift RPI to a 4-3 non-conference road victory over St. Cloud State.

The Engineers (5-6-4) trailed 2-0 before scoring three times — the first by Ryan Haggerty, the other two by Milos Bubela — in the first half of the second period to take the lead.

The Huskies (9-8-0), of the WCHA, tied the game with 7:27 to play on Cory Thorson’s goal. RPI is 4-1-2 in its past seven games.

In other news, the Serratore family rivalry will pick up this weekend at the Mariucci Classic.

Here is a UConn-centric preview for the Huskies’ holiday tournament,which includes Minnesota State.

This weekend’s schedule follows:

Fri
12/28/12
Minnesota Duluth
vs Maine
7:30 p.m. ET
Fri
12/28/12
Rensselaer
at St. Cloud State
7:07 p.m. CT
Sat
12/29/12
Nebraska Omaha
at Quinnipiac
12:00 p.m. ET
Sat
12/29/12
FerrisSt/Cornell
vs Minnesota Duluth
4:00/7:30 p.m. ET
Sat
12/29/12
Minnesota State
vs Brown
4:05 p.m. ET
Sat
12/29/12
Michigan
vs Michigan Tech
7:05 p.m. ET
Sat
12/29/12
Air Force
at Minnesota
7:07 p.m. CT
Sat
12/29/12
Boston University
at Denver
7:07 p.m. MT
Sun
12/30/12
Nebraska Omaha
at Quinnipiac
12:00 p.m. ET
Sun
12/30/12
WestrnMI/Mich St.
vs Michigan Tech
3:35/7:05 p.m. ET
Sun
12/30/12
Bemidji State
vs Massachusetts
4:00 p.m. ET
Sun
12/30/12
Amer Int/Connectt
vs Minnesota State
4:05/7:15 p.m. ET
Sun
12/30/12
Boston College
at Minnesota
7:07 p.m. CT
Mon
12/31/12
New Hamp/Dartmoth
vs Bemidji State
4:00/7:00 p.m. ET

Happy Holidays: Enjoy the videos

Former Tiger Noah Clarke scored to put the Belfast Giants into second place in Great Britain’s Elite Hockey League. Unfortunately for Tigers fans, the following Christmas video by the Giants was made two years ago to promote their holiday homestand  so Clarke is nowhere to be seen.

I guess we cannot get everything we want for Christmas each year.

Enjoy this video and have a joyous holiday surrounded by family and friends. The blog will resume on Dec. 27.

Here is the Vermont women’s more recent version:

And if a traditional song version is more your style, here’s the Calgary Hitmen performing Brenda Lee’s “Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree” from earlier this month:

Tigers battle back to tie No. 4 Minnesota (with interview video)

Minnesota was only 20 minutes from reclaiming a spot atop the Western Collegiate Hockey Association standings as it headed into its holiday break with a road sweep of Colorado College on Saturday night.

The Tigers would have none of that.

The never-say die Tigers rallied with three unanswered goals to stun No. 4 Minnesota and pick up a huge home point with a 4-4 tie after entering the third period trailing 4-1. CC senior Rylan Schwartz completed the rally when he ripped a one-timer past Minnesota freshman goalie Adam Wilcox with 24.6 seconds left in regulation after CC junior Alexander Krushelnyski, another Tigers hero in the third period, sent a crossing pass from along the near boards to the far post where Schwartz was unmarked.

Schwartz finished with two goals and an assist, including two points in the third period, while Krushelnyski recorded two goals and an assist in the final 16 minutes of regulation.

“Every night, certain guys step up and spark the team,” Krushelnyski said. “It just happened to be my turn. You have to give credit to Rylan for burying that puck to tie it. You also have to give credit to (Thorimbert) for shutting them out over the final 45 minutes.”

The comeback was big for a Tigers squad that has now gone 1-5-2 over its last eight games to drop into seventh place in the WCHA with two fewer league games played than most of the league. CC travels to third-place St. Cloud State, which is tied with Minnesota State, this weekend.

“We took a little step in the right direction,” Schwartz said.

Saturday’s result was comparable to the 4-4 tie against then-No. 5 New Hampshire, which had the Division I’s best scoring defense then. This time the rally came against the WCHA’s best scoring defense (11.88 goals),

Despite Denver’s 6-3 loss at North Dakota, the Pioneers are one point ahead of the Gophers (11-3-3, 6-3-3) as DU heads into its final weekend before the holiday break. UM is idle until it plays Air Force in the Mariucci Classic Dec. 29 while Denver (9-5-2, 7-3-2) travels to Bemidji State Dec. 14-15. DU’s winless streak is now at six games, the program’s longest such stretch since the 1999-2000 season.

“Some ties feel good and others feel like a loss,” Minnesota head coach Don Lucia said. “This feels like a loss. We were up 4-1 and could have made it 5-1 but we didn’t put it away and to their credit they battled back. It is disappointing we let a point slip away.”

Colorado College (8-8-2,-5-4-1)  got back into the game when Krushelnyski scored a shorthanded goal with 15:46 left and scored again 1:47 later to trim the Minnesota lead to 4-3. Krushelnyski’s first goal of the night came after Rylan Schwartz collected a loose puck in the Tigers zone and passed to the junior to  start a 2-on-1 breakaway. Krushelnyski fired the shot past Wilcox’s glove attempt to energize what had been a silent announced crowd of 6,954 fans at World Arena.

They were quiet no longer.

Krushelnyski’s second tally came after CC senior defenseman Mike Boivin fired a hard shot that went off Wilcox’s leg pad and ended up in front where Krushelnyski beat a UM defender to the puck to knock in the rebound.

And suddenly, Minnesota was battling to hold on. CC drew a penalty a couple minutes later but was unable to generate more than one shot (Krushelnyski). The Tigers continued to harass Wilcox but Minnesota weathered the storm.

CC came close to tying the game with 1:23 prompting a video review when Wilcox had to reach back to grab a loose puck in the crease. It was ruled the puck did not cross the line.

The rally continued a pattern of the Tigers falling behind only to battle back, usually falling short during this stretch, which included losing last Saturday against North Dakota after leading in the third period and falling after entering the third tied on Friday against the Gophers. CC has led in only 14 if its 18 games this season.

“It is starting to get kind of embarrassing,” Schwartz said. “We need to start better.”

“We know we can come from behind,” Krushelnyski said. “It’s a good asset to have. If we could add good starts we could be unbeatable.”

“It is a big point for us, especially after last Saturday and last night.” Tigers head coach Scott Owens said. “It reinforced a few things we have been talking about. I am proud of the team’s effort.”

Earlier, Schwartz scored the Tigers’ fourth power-play goal since the Bemidji State series in October. His wrister whizzed over Minnesota freshman goalie Adam Wilcox’s shoulder to make it 3-1 with 11:30 left, coming only 11 seconds into the man advantage.

The Gophers regained control when Mike Reilly scored an unassisted goal after collecting a loose puck in the Tigers zone and beating CC junior goalie Josh Thorimbert on a hard-angle shot inside the far post.

Minnesota seized control early when Tom Serratore, the Colorado Springs native who scored the game-winner on Friday, banged in a rebound after Nate Condon’s shot caromed off Thorimbert’s chest pad into the air and landed to Thorimbert’s left in front of an open net with 15:21 left in the first period.

Only 28 seconds later, a CC penalty set up Kyle Rau’s power-play goal only six seconds into the man advantage. Zach Budish won the faceoff, sending the puck back to Nate Schmidt who passed to the opposite faceoff circle from where Rau wristed a shot over Thorimbert’s shoulder as he slid over. That score made it two Gopher goals in only 34 seconds.

The game was the final WCHA regular-season game between the two programs with Minnesota leaving for the new Big Ten league and CC headed to the National Collegiate Hockey Conference with the start of the 2013-14 season.

Seth Ambroz fired a hard shot through traffic from the right point with 5:28 left to make it 3-0.

No. 4 Minnesota 4, No. 19 Colorado College 4

Minnesota          3              1              0              0              –4

Colorado College             0              1              3              0              –4

First period – 1. Minnesota, Serratore (Condon, Ambroz) 4:39; 2. Minnesota, Haula (Schmidt, Budish) 5:13; 3. Minnesota, Ambroz (Schmidt, Boyd) 14:32. Penalties – CC, King, tripping, 5:07; UM, Helgeson, cross checking, 12:21; CC, Skalbeck, slashing, 12:21; CC, Rapuzzi, roughing, 19:22.

Second period – 4. Colorado College, Schwartz (McDermott, Winkler) 8:30 (PP); 5. Minnesota, M. Reilly (unassisted) 15:41. Penalties – UM, Ambroz, holding, 1:32; CC, Schwartz, slashing, 5:59; UM, Haula, tripping, 8:19; CC, Collett, tripping, 10:59; UM, Isackson, hooking, 15:52; CC, Boivin, roughing, 16:15.

Third period – 6. Colorado College, Krushelnyski (Schwartz) 4:14 (SH); 7. Colorado College, Krushelnyski (Boivin, Rapuzzi) 6:01; 8. Colorado College, Schwartz (Krushelnyski, Winkler) 19:36 (EX). Penalties – CC, Bradley, high sticking, 2:30; UM, Isackson, roughing, 8:56.

Overtime – No scoring. Penalties – none.

Power play – Minnesota 1-6, Colorado College 1-4. Shots on goal – Minnesota 11-10-5-3 — 29; Colorado College 11-6-9-1 – 27. Saves-minutes – Minnesota, Wilcox 11-5-6-1- 65:00; Colorado College, Thorimbert 8-9-5-3- — 64:01. Referees – Bokai, Thul. Linesmen – Stankevich, Stodgell. Attendance – 6,954.

Saturday reading: CC-UND reaction, MSU video

2012-13_Winkler_UND1No. 7 North Dakota gets impressive coverage from the Grand Forks Herald, as usual.

Here is the UND beat writer’s take, the columnist’s viewpoint that traveled to Colorado Springs, The Gazette’s version, CCTigers.com,  mine for USCHO, and North Dakota athletics.

Here are more notes and links from the Herald and The Gazette.

Minnesota State defeated visiting Bemidji State 3-0 in a men’s college hockey game played in Mankato, Minn., Friday, Nov. 30. MSU senior forward Eriah Hayes contributed a between-the-legs, no-loss pass to assist on MSU’s second goal scored by Zach Lehrke at the 16:00 mark of the second period.

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 25 other followers