Another Slavin set to enter Colorado College fold

slavin lincolnLincoln Stars forward Josiah Slavin has committed to Colorado College, where his older brother and NHL defenseman Jaccob Slavin (Carolina Hurricanes) played for two seasons, the U.S. Hockey League franchise announced on Thursday.

He is scheduled to join the National Collegiate Hockey Conference program starting with the 2019-20 season.

“The coaching staff there is awesome,” Slavin said in a media release. “When I went to visit there this summer, it just felt right. It wasn’t the time to commit then, but we stayed in touch. Now, it felt like the perfect time to do it. It’s a lot of weight lifted off my shoulders. I’m just excited to start the next part of my life.”

The Erie, Colo. native, 19, has played 53 games with the Stars in his second USHL season, tallying 18 goals and 18 assists for 36 points with 23 penalty minutes and a +26 rating.

The 6-foot-2, 182-pounder recorded his first career hat-trick on Dec. 16, 2017 against Des Moines. Through 102 games, he has 24 goals and 26 assists for 50 points with four game-winning goals and three shorthanded goals.

The NCHC is regarded as one of the best conferences in college hockey, and the competition every night provides a unique challenge, according to Slavin.

“Family played a huge part [in my decision],” he said. “I always loved Colorado growing up in the state. I’m a homebody, so when I’m out of Colorado I miss it. I just love it there.”

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Troy Terry sparks Pioneers past Tigers to force decisive Game 3 Sunday night

du vs ccDENVER — A career-high 46 saves for Colorado College goalie Alex Leclerc were not enough as No. 4 Denver star Troy Terry led the Pioneers to a  3-2 come-from-behind win

“He was great again,” Tigers coach Mike Haviland said. “He gave us a chance and that’s all you ask for your goalie to do. He has been outstanding.”

The victory forced a decisive Game 3 at 6:05 Sunday night at Magness Arena in the National Collegiate Hockey Conference quarterfinals series.

Denver battled back with its biggest star shining for two timely goals. Troy Terry was credited for the tying goal after the referees ruled the puck went in off a CC player’s stick after three-straight short-range shots by 19-9-8 Denver were blocked or turned away.

The goal with 17:43 left knotted the score at 2-2. Terry later scored with 5:31 remaining for his second of the night and the game-winner.

Denver found more open ice as the 15-16-5 Tigers tired. It showed on Terry’s tally with him able to lead a solo rush into the CC zone. He cut between defenders and fired a rising shot that beat Leclerc high stick side for the final margin.

Haviland was not going to use fatigue as an excuse so much as give credit to Terry’s considerable NHL-ready talent.

“The best player in college hockey showed up tonight,” Haviland said. “Simple as that. He makes the play off the rush there. He can do that to you. He is dangerous.”

CC was in position to win its first NCHC playoff series after Tigers defenseman Kristian Blumenschein waited and then fired, beating Denver goalie Tanner Jaillet as traffic crossed in front of the Pioneers senior for the go-ahead goal with 2:20 left in the second period. The power-play tally, CC’s second in the series, put the visitors ahead 2-1.

“There was desperation on both sides,” Haviland said. “There has to be. We need more desperation for me, but it was a good hockey game. There were a lot of ups and downs. It was a tough way (to lose).”

CC struck first when Trey Bradley forced a turnover by Ian Mitchell near the Tigers blue line. Bradley collected the loose puck in neutral ice after Mitchell fell and then cut across the slot, beating Jaillet with a soft backhander behind him after the Pioneers netminder went down to stop a fake on the forehand.

The unassisted shorthanded tally with 3:19 left made it 1-0. It was the Tigers’ second shorty of the season.

Things got more physical with Denver drawing a 5-minute major on Nick Halloran, who cross-checked Adam Plant in the helmet with 2:15 left. A flurry of penalties were called during the ensuing scuffle and set up Denver for  an extended power play to end the first and start the second.

That drew a chorus of boos and got the Magness Arena crowd into the game. They erupted when Henrik Borgstrom scored  2:06 into the second. He rifled a power-play shot into the upper corner against a screened Leclerc to make it 1-1 and end the CC sophomore’s shutout streak vs. DU at 150 minutes, 34 seconds, which included two straight wins.

That Borgstrom goal was a product of a more sustained effort by the Pioneers to get bodies on front of Leclerc, making his life more difficult over the final two periods. Even then, Leclerc was almost enough for CC to pull off a series sweep before Terry took the game over.

“There was a lot of emotion in the game and I liked the way we played,” Denver coach Jim Montgomery said. “We played a team game. I liked how hard we were and how resilient we were.”

halloran road unis

In the pros: Bachman called up by NHL’s Stars; may play Tuesday

bachmanpracticeIt looks like former Tiger Richard Bachman may be with the big club for awhile and could see some playing time.

The Dallas Stars blogger, who usually has a good feel for his team, thinks Bachman could make his first start of the season in Detroit on Tuesday. Lehtonen was reportedly dealing with a “tweak” of his own, leading to Nilstorp’s start on Saturday, so it’s unlikely the Stars push him with back-to-back starts this early in the season.

Bachman was originally sent to the Texas Stars to get some game action after not playing during the lockout.

He replaces the Swedish backup who was put on injured reserve after a groin injury suffered during Saturday’s 4-3 loss to St. Louis.

Here is the press release …

FRISCO, Texas – The Dallas Stars announced today that they have recalled goaltender Richard Bachman from the Texas Stars, Dallas’ development affiliate in the American Hockey League (AHL). The team also placed goaltender Cristopher Nilstorp on Injured Reserve.

Bachman, 25, has played in four games for Texas this season, earning a 3-1-0 record with a .916 save percentage (SV%) and a 2.46 goals against average (GAA). The Salt Lake City native has appeared in 19 career NHL contests, posting an 8-5-1 record with a .911 SV%, a 2.75 GAA and one shutout. He was Dallas’ fourth-round selection (120th overall) in 2006.

Nilstorp, 28, has appeared in two NHL contests for Dallas this season, posting a 0-2-0 record with a .918 SV% and a 2.70 GAA. He’s also appeared in 28 contests for the Texas Stars this season, where he earned a 16-10- 4 record with a .916 SV% and a 2.13 GAA. Prior to his North American career, the Malmo, Sweden native played for Farjestad in the Swedish Elite League (SEL), where he helped the team capture the 2011 Le Mat Trophy, which is earned annually by the victors of the SEL. Nilstorp was undrafted and signed by Dallas as a free agent on June 5, 2012.

The Dallas Stars face off against the Columbus Blue Jackets at Nationwide Arena on Monday night at 6 p.m. Central  (TV: FOX Sports Southwest).

In the pros: Hillen injury, Crabb, Prosser, Schwartz, Stuart, AHL

Hillen shootsFrom the Washington Times …

TAMPA, Fla. | Washington Capitals defenseman and former Tiger Jack Hillen left Saturday night’s season opener against the Tampa Bay Lightning after taking a hit into the boards from Vinny Lecavalier.

Hillen’s left shoulder hit into the boards after Lecavalier struck him with what appeared to be a clean check. He was down on the ice and in pain until the whistle blew with 8:17 left in the second period.

Hillen was attended to on the ice but skated off under his own power, favoring his left arm. Hillen did not return. Coach Adam Oates said the defenseman had an upper-body injury but offered no other update.

Hillen, who’s listed at 5-foot-10 and 190 pounds, signed a one-year contract with the Caps in July. He was making his Washington debut.

Adam Oates dressed seven defensemen and 11 forwards, so Hillen’s injury knocked the Caps down to the usual six. No penalty was called on the play. Joey Crabb was a healthy scratch.

In other former Tigers news, Nate Prosser logged 12:10 in the Wild’s 4-2 win over Colorado. Jaden Schwartz played 11:59 in St. Louis’ 6-0 win over Detroit, , took two shots, blocked two shots and one hit. Winnipeg’s Mark Stuart drew an early boarding call that set up a Jets’ 1-0 lead on a power-play goal.

Both Richard Bachman and Toby Petersen, who enters his 13th professional season in 2012-13, his ninth in the AHL, are starting the season with the Texas Stars. Petersen signed a two-year two-way contract with Dallas on July 2, 2012.

Kris Fredheim has five points (four assists) in 24 games with the AHL’s Houston Aeros. Brian Connelly had 22 points (20 assists) in 33 games before a recent injury. Chad Rau has seven points (four goals) in 24 games with Houston.

In the pros: J. Schwartz makes Blues roster

225px-Jaden_Schwartz_WJC12_press_conferenceRookie Jaden Schwartz has wrapped up an impressive camp and figures to be on the Blues’ 23-man roster when final rosters are due at 4 p.m. (St. Louis time) Friday.

“He’s available for our selection,” Blues coach Ken Hitchcock said Friday morning.

Schwartz, who is playing on the left wing after lining up at center in Peoria, is expected to suit up for Saturday’s season opener on a line with Patrik Berglund and Chris Stewart.

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More Thursday reading: 2014 regionals, Badger Bob, diving, AFA

Wisconsin coach Bob Johnson poses with trophies won  during the 1976-77 season. COURTESY WISCONSIN ATHLETICS

The sites for the 2014 NCAA regionals were announced Thursday morning.

Here is the weekly USCHO column featuring “Badger Bob” Johnson and all the connections between CC and Wisconsin.

The new head of Hockey East officials has noticed a lot of players are taking dives. He plans to fix that.

Air Force may be turning the corner now that it can string together points in league play while Army’s offense looks much improved.

Dartmouth is enjoying a strong start in ECAC play.

NCAA president unwisely chose not to include the Division III championship game during the 2014 Philadelphia Frozen Four

Tuesday reading: CC season preview, Rylan Schwartz, Jaden Schwartz, Connelly, Rau, Sweatt, Testwuide, Bachman, Hockey East

Incoming CC freshman Hunter Fejes, shown in red during the Coyotes prospect camp,  will be one of the six newcomers the Tigers will look to for big results this coming season.

Colorado College sports information posted its season preview.

Senior assistant captain Rylan Schwartz is one of the top players returning in Division I judging from national statistics. His 0.66 goals per game trails only Maine’s Joey Diamond, who he is tied with at 11 power-play goals last season.

RPI’s Without a Peer blog compiled the stats (ECAC first followed by national) in this post.

Former Tiger Jaden Schwartz was assigned to AHL Peoria so he may continue to develop during the NHL lockout. Brian Connelly and Chad Rau were sent to AHL Houston. Bill Sweatt is headed to the Chicago Wolves as is Mike Testwuide to AHL Adirondack.

Here are five storylines to watch in Hockey East.

There are high hopes for Richard Bachman among the Dallas Stars leadership.

Former Badger Justin Schultz (remember him?) will benefit from the NHL lockout with some time spent with the AHL’s Oklahoma City Barons.