Tigers finish strong in 5-1 home win over Bulldogs

rylan goldsColorado College found itself in an unfamiliar situation; they were comfortably ahead at home and there were no white-knuckle moments to be had during the third period.

The Tigers (10-14-2, 7-10-1) could get used to that feeling.

“It was huge for us,” said CC sophomore Peter Stoykewych, who scored his first college goal, which proved to be the eventual gamewinner in a 5-1 win over Minnesota-Duluth before an announced crowd of 6.923 at Colorado Springs World Arena. “We don’t get a lot of these fun wins.”

Here is video of Stoykewych being interviewed after the game.

Stoykewych fired a hard wrist shot from just inside the blue line through traffic past a screened UMD freshman goalie Matt McNeely to give the Tigers a 2-1 lead with 14:59 left in the second period.

Sophomore right wing Charlie Taft was in front of the UMD net and appeared to obscure McNeely’s view of the shot, which came off an assist from senior center Rylan Schwartz.

That made it 2-1 and for the first time in a while, the Tigers added to their lead. Rylan Schwartz made a nice pass to an open Alexander Krushelnyski six minutes later to make it 3-1 headed into second intermission.

“Honestly, I really expected to come out harder for the first period but they got better as the game went on,” said UMD head coach Scott Sandelin.

With his third assist, Schwartz moved past Pete Geronazzo, Tom Preissing and Steve Strunk (87 apiece) and into a tie with Jay McNeill for 25th place on CC’s all-time list with 89 for his career. CC assistant Eric Rud is 24th with 90.

“I’m coming after him,” Schwartz joked.

He wasn’t kidding when he talked about the team’s more determined play and stronger overall team defense that keyed the win. That determination stemmed from a poor team performance in Friday’s 3-2 loss to the Bulldogs (10-11-3, 8-7-3) and a streak of 12 winning seasons that remains in jeopardy.

“We were a little bit pissed off,” Schwartz said. “No one wants to be the team that ruin it.”

Here is a postgame video interview of Schwartz.

Senior captain William Rapuzzi clinched the win – CC’s second in two weekends but only its third in 16 games (3-11-2) – with a hard shot past McNeely’s glove three minutes into the third period.

Finishing off an opponent is something CC had not done since home wins over Bemidji State in early November.

“We were not playing at a level we need to be,” Stoykewych said. “We know we can compete with anybody. We had to prove it to ourselves again.”

A turnover and little bad luck had erased an early Colorado College lead during the first period.

Minnesota-Duluth’s Keegan Flaherty forced a turnover by CC’s Jared Hanson and fired a centering pass on net that went in off Tigers defenseman Ian Young with 2:03 left in the opening period to tie the game at 1-1.

It was the only goal senior goalie Joe Howe allowed.

He finished with 40 saves while the Tigers hit the ice to block 15 shots, including nine in the decisive second period.

“The guys did a great job blocking shots,” Howe said. “I created some of my own saves (off rebounds) but they played hard the whole game even when we were up 5-1.”

“That was huge,” said Tigers head coach Scott Owens. “Things were teetering a bit, especially after they scored that fluky goal with (two) minutes left in the first.”

“Their goalie was good all night and special when they needed him to be,” Sandelin said. “They capitalized on their chances and we could not. The game did not feel like a 5-1 game until the third period. They played well with the lead.”

The fluky goal erased an early 1-0 CC lead when senior defenseman Mike Boivin scored his 11th of the year when he skated over a step and fired a hard shot high glove side from between the circles to beat McNeely. That power play goal is just the second McNeely has allowed in his last 10 starts.

Colorado College 5, Minnesota Duluth 1

Minnesota Duluth          1          0          0          –1

Colorado College         1          2          2          –5

First period – 1. CC, Boivin (McDermott, Schwartz) 12:31 (PP); 2. UMD, Flaherty (unassisted), 17:57. Penalties – CC, Schwartz, roughing, :35; UMD, Herbert, roughing, :35; UMD, bench, too many men, 7:51; UMD, Krause, boarding, 11:43; CC, Morin, interference, 15:20; CC, Stoykewych, slashing, 15:55; UMD, Seidel, slashing, 15:55.

Second period – 3. CC, Stoykewych (Schwartz, Krushelnyski) 5:01; 4. CC, Krushelnyski (Schwartz) 11:10. Penalties – CC, Marciano, cross-checking, 8:17; UMD, Johnson, elbowing, 18:20.

Third period – 5. CC, Rapuzzi (Bradley, Fejes) 2:56; 6. CC, Bradley (Krushelnyski) 15:10; Penalties — CC, Boivin, roughing, 10:14; UMD, Basaraba, tripping, 11:58.

Power play – UMD 0-3, CC 1-4. Shots on goals – Duluth 12-16-13 – 41; CC 9-13-5 – 27.  Saves-minutes – Duluth, McNeely 8-11-3 – 60:00; CC, Howe 11-16 -13– 60:00. Referees – Adam, Walsh. Linesmen – Stankevich, Staudte. Attendance – 6,923.

Friday reading: Harstad homecoming, WCHA previews, videos

Tigers sophomore defenseman Aaron Harstad will get a chance to play before family and friends when the Stevens Point, Wis, resident plays in the Kohl Center for the first time when CC travels to Wisconsin to open WCHA play this weekend.

“It’s exciting to get to play in place like the Kohl Center,” said Harstad, who played a state tournament game in the smaller UW women’s arena during his high school days. “A lot of my family will be there.”

CC practiced Thursday night at UW’s new practice rink because of a basketball game at the Kohl Center that night.

Also, Wisconsin’s Derek Lee is reportedly ready to play this weekend after missing last weekend due to injuries from a car-scooter accident.

Here are the preview notes for Colorado College at Wisconsin; No. 12 Boston University at No. 5 North Dakota; No. 18 St. Cloud State at No. 3 Denver; unranked Minnesota State vs. No. 2 Minnesota; and Nebraska-Omaha at Michigan Tech.

Alaska-Anchorage, Bemidji State and No. 17 Minnesota-Duluth are idle.

Here is a look at SCSU’s Nic Dowd. North Dakota received a commit from the son of its longtime athletic trainer.

Videos are becoming more commonplace for sports information departments. Here is North Dakota’s latest Through These Doors episode:

Michigan Tech’s latest In The Crease episode concerns the recent home split against Minnesota:

Friday reading: Clarkson, predictions, lockout, Serratore, Nanooks

Here is the Know Your Enemy post on Clarkson by the RPI fan blog, who covers the ECAC quite well. Plenty of good information in this season preview as well.

The North Dakota beat writer picks CC to finish 10th in the WCHA. His season preview supplement is also available. Information how to get it without a Herald subscription is here. It costs $4 and it is definitely worth it. Brad Schlossman puts a lot of work into this every year.

The new Bemidji State beat writer (welcome Jack Hittinger) makes his picks as does Duluth vet Kevin Pates here. College Hockey Weekly also weighs in.

The College Hockey News announced its preseason Top 10 with Minnesota No. 1.

This freshman could fill Minnesota’s hole at goalie if former CC backup Michael Shibrowski cannot.

Former Tiger Mark Stuart is optimistic the NHL lockout may end soon.

New Minnesota State Mankato coach Mike Hastings runs intense practices.

Air Force coach Frank Serratore hands out some sound advice to parents about whether their child should leave high school early for junior hockey.

Per Matthew Semisch via Twitter: Just confirmed that, despite Omaha radio reshuffle, Dave Ahlers and Terry Leahy will still be doing the UNO hockey broadcasts this season.

Minnesota is also picked to win the WCHA women’s title by its coaches.

There is a three-way battle for the starting goaltender job at Alaska-Fairbanks after years of stability. Here is the 2011-12 introduction video which was a departure from the previous years where CCHA opponents were blown up seemingly at random.

Here is the 2010-11 intro which includes the destruction of the CCHA opponents and the Earth as well. Please comment below which you prefer. Keep in mind both intros are played at ear-splitting volume levels.

Monday reading: Fejes’ NHL draft ranking, West, Duluth anniversary, DU honoree, All-Americans, club news and tryout info

The NHL released its final draft rankings and CC 2012 commit Samuel “Hunter” Fejes was rated at No. 91 among North American skaters. The draft is June 22-23.

Pine Creek High School graduate Emily West, pictured at right, is bringing the NCAA women’s championship trophy to her old Denver area club team to inspire the next generation of women’s college players.

One year ago today, on April 9, 2011, Minnesota Duluth won the NCAA title (video).

Denver’s Joey LaLeggia, who led Division I rookie defensemen with 38 points, was named the Hockey Commissioners Association National Rookie of the Year, it was announced over the weekend in Tampa.

LaLeggia was also the WCHA’s Rookie of the Year. The assistant coaches of the college hockey teams vote, with each league’s rookie honoree nominated. Cornell’s Brian Ferlin, Michigan’s Alex Guptill, Bentley’s Alex Grieve and Massachusetts-Lowell’s Scott Wilson, scheduled to play at World Arena this October, were runners-up. CC travels to Cornell in mid-October over block break while Air Force may host Bentley.

Here is a full list of the All-America teams announced over the weekend, which included West first team forward and former Tiger Jaden Schwartz and second-team East defenseman Tim Kirby of Air Force. Kirby is an East honoree because the Atlantic Hockey Association is based in the Northeast.

In club news, three Pikes Peak Miners were named to their age division’s all-North American Prospects Hockey League teams. Alec Butcher leads the U18 division in goals and points and is headed to the Kenai, Alaska franchise in the NAHL. Looks like he may be one for college scouts to keep an eye on.

The Colorado Hockey Club’s (Rampage) tryouts are April 20-22 (all goalie spots full) and July 27-29. Click here for more info.

The Colorado Springs Amateur Hockey Association (Miners) are also holding their first tryout session April 20-22. Click here for more details.

Thursday reading: League honors, playoff notes, pros and women updates

CC sophomore goalie Josh Thorimbert shared co-defensive player of the week honors from the WCHA. He gets a rematch in this weekend’s playoff series. Here’s preview notes from the fifth seeded Tigers and Huskies.

North Dakota climbed from 11th to fourth by season’s end, giving them home ice against Bemidji State this weekend. Beavers coach Tom Serratore talks UND in this video.

The Minnesota Duluth Bulldogs, seeded second in the WCHA playoffs, dyed their hair blonde last seaosn and won a national title. They hope Mohawks do the trick this seasonHere are notes for the playoff series preview against MSU Mankato.

Top seed Minnesota hosts last-place Alaska Anchorage a year after the Seawolves upset the Gophers. No. 3 Denver hosts No. 10 Wisconsin while sixth seeded SCSU hosts Nebraska Omaha.

Former Tiger Brian McMillin played his 100th pro game last Friday. Nate Prosser reminisces about the Minnesota state hockey tournament.

Here’s Bruce Ciskie’s look at the WCHA playoffs with predictions and the Merrimack beat writer’s predictions for the Hockey East quarterfinals. Tiger fans should hope he was wrong about Merrimack advancing.

The Grand Forks Herald provides only a smidgen of information since injury updates are forbidden during playoff time.Here’s the latest on the Sioux nickname mess. Here’s Goon’s World All-WCHA blogger ballot.

Pine Creek graduate Emily West cracked the women’s top 10 in all-time points at Minnesota with 153 career points last weekend.

From the WCHA:

Playoffs, First Round – Best-of-Three

Games for Friday, March 9: (12) Alaska Anchorage at (1) Minnesota (NC), 7:07 pm CT; (11) Minnesota State at (2) Minnesota Duluth (NC), 7:07 pm CT; (10) Wisconsin at (3) Denver (NC), 7:37 pm MT; (9) Bemidji State at (4) North Dakota (NC), 7:37 pm CT; (8) Michigan Tech at (5) Colorado College (NC), 7:37 pm MT; (7) Nebraska Omaha at (6) St. Cloud State (NC), 7:37 pm CT.

Games for Saturday, March 10: (12) Alaska Anchorage at (1) Minnesota (NC), 7:07 pm CT; (11) Minnesota State at (2) Minnesota Duluth (NC), 7:07 pm CT; (10) Wisconsin at (3) Denver (NC), 7:07 pm MT; (9) Bemidji State at (4) North Dakota (NC), 7:07 pm CT; (8) Michigan Tech at (5) Colorado College (NC), 7:07 pm MT; (7) Nebraska Omaha at (6) St. Cloud State (NC), 7:07 pm CT.

Games for Sunday, March 11 (if necessary): (12) Alaska Anchorage at (1) Minnesota (NC), 7:07 pm CT; (11) Minnesota State at (2) Minnesota Duluth (NC), 7:07 pm CT; (10) Wisconsin at (3) Denver (NC), 7:07 pm MT; (9) Bemidji State at (4) North Dakota (NC), 7:07 pm CT; (8) Michigan Tech at (5) Colorado College (NC), 7:07 pm MT; (7) Nebraska Omaha at (6) St. Cloud State (NC), 7:07 pm CT.

Saturday reading: Rau hit and suspension, videos and recaps

MSU Mankato 3, Alaska Anchorage 2

ANCHORAGE — Senior forward Mike Louwerse scored his second goal of the game at 9:42 of the third period to lift the Minnesota State Mavericks to a 3-2 win against the Alaska Anchorage Seawolves on Friday night at Sullivan Arena.

Here’s the Mankato Free Press’s writeup and a video interview from Anchorage’s fan blog. The purple Mavs have a chance at moving into 10th past idle Wisconsin with the road sweep late tonight.

Here’s that nasty hit (video) by Minnesota’s Kyle Rau on DU captain Jason Zucker that has been a popular topic this morning. Here’s more from the Gophers’ perspective and an update on Zucker, who tweeted at 1:30 a.m. Mountain that he was feeling better.

Rau was suspended for Saturday’s game. Here’s the press release:

“The men’s Western Collegiate Hockey Association today announced a one-game suspension to University of Minnesota hockey player Kyle Rau for his actions in the February 10 game vs the University of Denver.

Rau’s suspension was determined after a review of the incident under the WCHA’s Supplementary Discipline Policy and Procedures. At the time of the incident, he was assessed a 5:00-major penalty for boarding and a 10:00-game misconduct.

Rau will be required to serve this one-game suspension in his team’s next regularly scheduled game on Saturday, February 11 vs the University of Denver.”

More notes and links from North Dakota’s 3-1 win at No. 3 Minnesota Duluth and a video on CC’s 4-2 road loss to Bemidji State.

There was a nasty hit (video) as well by Duluth’s Joe Basaraba on UND’s Nick Mattson too.

Here’s the Mining Gazette’s story on UNO’s 3-3 road tie against Michigan Tech.

Here are the current standings:

WCHA Games
Overall
GP
W
L
T
Pts
GF
GA
W
L
T
GF
GA
Minnesota
21
15
6
0
30
69
43
19
10
1
111
64
Minnesota Duluth
21
12
6
3
27
77
53
18
7
4
106
72
Denver
21
11
6
4
26
73
62
16
9
4
102
79
Colorado College
21
12
8
1
25
75
63
15
10
2
90
74
North Dakota
21
12
9
0
24
59
55
16
10
2
85
76
Michigan Tech
21
10
8
3
23
75
64
13
13
3
92
86
Nebraska Omaha
21
9
7
5
23
65
66
12
11
6
87
86
St. Cloud State
22
9
10
3
21
64
59
12
14
4
90
84
Bemidji State
21
8
10
3
19
56
68
14
12
3
81
80
Wisconsin
22
7
13
2
16
58
71
12
14
2
83
84
Minnesota State
23
7
15
1
15
63
86
11
19
1
87
106
Alaska Anchorage
23
4
18
1
9
48
92
7
18
2
65
101

Tuesday reading: DU’s NCAA hopes are dim; Jaden video; Sioux nickname

After a loss and tie against CC this weekend, the Pioneers will have a difficult time making the NCAAs.

Minnesota Duluth will honor its four Hobey Baker winners this Friday during the home series against North Dakota.

The Big Ten plans to use a neutral site for its postseason tournament.

Minnesota’s version of the Beanpot Tournament is getting people excited. A comment suggesting they name the tournament the Herbie after Herb Brooks is a great idea.

Here’s video of the Jaden Schwartz goal from Saturday. Wow. DU coach George Gwozdecky said the goal would give him nightmares for some time. You can see why. Denver was in control up to that moment with CC tying the game three minutes later.

This debate will never die: A petition being submitted Tuesday night could restore the Sioux nickname at North Dakota, dependent on forcing a state referendum.