Minnesota-Duluth, CC’s weekend foe, moves up to No. 3 in national USCHO poll

cc full rinkThe St. Cloud Huskies remained atop the weekly USCHO.com national poll while Minnesota-Duluth’s home sweep of Omaha pushed the defending NCAA champions up to third in the ratings.

The second-place Bulldogs (16-6-2, 9-4-1-0 NCHC) travel to sixth-place Colorado College (10-12-3, 4-7-2-0) this weekend.

Four National Collegiate Hockey Conference team cracked the Top 10 with Denver down to No. 7 ahead of No. 8 Western Michigan, which swept the Pioneers last weekend.

North Dakota fell short of the top 20 for the second-straight week at what would be No. 21 with a now significant gap (70-19) over Yale. Air Force is tied with Boston University at what would be No. 23 (seven points).

CC rallies for first road sweep in almost seven years, first in NCHC play

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MU file photo

Colorado College rallied for its first road sweep since late 2012 with a 3-2 come-from-behind win at Miami on Saturday night in Oxford, Ohio.

Senior defenseman Cole McCaskill scored his second goal of the season only 86 seconds into the third period to tie the National Collegiate Hockey Conference contest at 2-2. The game-winner came off blue-liner Kristian Blumenschein’s stick with 3:22 left during a 5-on-3 power play for the Tigers (10-12-3, 4-7-2 NCHC, 14 points). It was the junior’s first goal this campaign.

“What a cannon that was at the end,” coach Mike Haviland said of Blumenschein’s goal during a radio interview. “Our defensemen aren’t known for our goals but that was big for us tonight. You don’t see (a road sweep) often in this conference. Guys have really stuck with it. It’s nice to see them rewarded for their hard work tonight.”

Thanks to the two third-period goals, it was the first time CC rallied for a win after trailing entering the final period this season. The sweep moved the Tigers into sixth place ahead of Omaha (12 standings points) and Miami (11).

“This gives us a lot of confidence knowing we can do that,” McCaskill said. “(Competing for 120 minutes) is something we have to do. We can skate with anyone in the conference when we do that.”

“We have been looking to chip in for a while now,” McCaskill added. “Blumenschein’s shot was a beautiful one.”

CC had only four goals from their defensemen this season entering Saturday’s game. It was the first time CC had three blue-liners score in the same game in recent memory.

The Tigers swept Wisconsin on Nov. 2-3, 2012 (5-3, 3-0). The Tigers advanced to the WCHA Final Five title game that season before losing to the Badgers under former coach Scott Owens.

Tigers senior Ben Israel scored CC’s opening goal early in the first period before Miami scored twice to give the RedHawks (9-13-4, 3-9-2-1) their first lead in two weekends. Miami will likely be CC’s final unranked foe this regular season.

The Tigers host fifth-ranked and defending NCAA champion Minnesota-Duluth next weekend for CC’s first home games in a program record nine games. That stretch was extended by last Friday’s rescheduled home game against rival and fifth-place Denver, which was swept on the road by Western Michigan earlier Saturday.

Tigers rout RedHawks, climb out of last place in NCHC

D-07-11 Goggin Ice w new logoColorado College played a strong road game, especially in the first two periods, to cruise to a 6-1 win at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio on Friday night.

Sophomore Brian Williams scored twice, including the opening tally midway through the first period as CC reeled off three goals in five minutes to take a 3-0 lead.

“It felt really good to get two goals but even better getting the win tonight,” Williams said in a radio interview.

Alex Berardinelli and Troy Conzo both scored during that spurt. It was Williams’ first appearance in 2018-19 after being a healthy scratch all season. Four of his five career goals are against Miami.

“I don’t know why but I am happy to get the goals,” Williams added. “Hopefully I can spread it around a bit more.”

The Tigers did not let up with senior Trey Bradley scoring on an unassisted wraparound only 44 seconds into the second period for a 4-0 edge. Bradley’s 10 goals lead the Tigers (9-12-3, 3-7-2 NCHC), who moved into a tie with Omaha for seventh place and only one point behind the sixth-place RedHawks (9-12-4, 3-8-2-1). Omaha trailed by four goals at Minnesota-Duluth later Friday.

Miami, mired in an 0-7-4 skid, last won on Nov. 17 (3-2 OT) in Colorado Springs.

Bradley’s goal ended MU starter Ryan Larkin’s night at four saves on eight shots. The win snapped a 0-3-1 mark in 2019 for CC.

Williams scored again to make it 5-0 midway through the second against Alabama-Huntsville graduate transfer Jordan Uhelski (two goals allowed, 14 saves).

Miami spoiled Tigers goalie Alex Leclerc’s shutout bid (29 saves) when a shot by Grant Hutton found its way through traffic past the screened goaltender with 9:52 left in the middle frame to make it 5-1.

CC’s Christiano Versich lifted in a loose puck late in the third period for the final margin.

CC-Denver game rescheduled for Tuesday, Feb. 26

cc full rinkThe home game for Colorado College versus rival Denver  that was postponed last Friday, Jan. 18, will be played at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 26, at The Broadmoor World Arena, the school announced in a media release.

All tickets from the Jan. 18 game remain valid and may be presented at the gate on Feb. 26. No ticket exchange is necessary.

Those unable to attend the Feb. 26 game may exchange their paid tickets for any remaining regular season home game, subject to availability. Exchanges must be made in person at the World Arena or Pikes Peak Center box offices for a ticket of equal or lesser value. No refunds.

Complimentary tickets are not exchangeable and must be used for the Feb. 26 game only. Parking passes from Jan. 18 will be honored for one remaining regular-season home game.