WCHA roundup: Lucia records No. 600; Denver routs Air Force

No. 1 Minnesota 3, Michigan Tech 2

HOUGHTON — Sophomore forward Seth Ambroz scored twice to help Don Lucie secure his 600th career win as Minnesota skated to a 3-2 victory against Michigan Tech on Saturday at John MacInnes Student Ice Arena.

No. 7 Denver 5, Air Force 2

DENVER — Junior forward Nick Shore registered three goals and an assist to lead Denver to a 5-2 win against Air Force on Saturday night at Magness Arena.

No. 17 Northern Michigan 2, Nebraska Omaha 1

OMAHA — Junior forward Zahn Raubenheimer scored a goal but Nebraska Omaha was defeated by Northern Michigan, 2-1, on Saturday night at CenturyLink Center.

St. Cloud State 4, Alabama-Huntsville 0

ST. CLOUD — Senior forward Drew LeBlanc and sophomore defenseman Andrew Prochno each had a goal and an assist to help St. Cloud State earn a weekend sweep with a 4-0 win against Alabama Huntsville on Saturday at National Hockey Center.

Bemidji State 5, Lake Superior State 0

BEMIDJI — Sophomore goaltender Andrew Walsh stopped 25 shots and junior forward Radoslav Illo had a goal and an assist to lead Bemidji State to a 5-0 win against Lake Superior State on Saturday night at Sanford Center.

Minnesota State 5, RPI 4 OT

MANKATO — Senior forward Eriah Hayes scored at 1:09 of overtime to lift Minnesota State to a 4-3 win against Rensselaer on Saturday night at Verizon Wireless Center.

Alaska Anchorage 6, Merrimack 3

FAIRBANKS — Sophomore forward Scott Allen scored two goals and an assist and freshman forward Blake Tatchell added two goals to lead Alaska Anchorage to a 6-3 victory against Merrimack College on Saturday night at the Brice Alaska Goal Rush in Fairbanks

Wednesday reading: Honors, Crabb, Hillen, DU, UND, schedule

Two future NCHC foes garnered weekly CCHA honors.

The recent NHL proposal has desperate NHL bloggers excited enough to post depth charts, including former Tigers Joey Crabb, pictured, and  Jack Hillen in Washington.

Denver has a new  director of media relations after Eric Bacher left for the assistant athletics director for public relations at Virginia. His replacement is Nicole Bostel, who was DU’s associate director of media relations. Congratulations to Nicole on the promotion.

Here is an injury update for shorthanded North Dakota.

This Week in the WCHA …

Games for Thursday, Oct. 18: Minnesota Duluth at Notre Dame (NC), 7:35 pm ET.

Games for Friday, Oct. 19: Minnesota at Michigan Tech (WCHA), 7:07 pm ET; Minnesota Duluth at Notre Dame (NC), 7:35 pm ET; Lake Superior at Bemidji State (NC), 7:37 pm CT; Rensselaer at Minnesota State (NC), 7:37 pm CT; Alabama-Huntsville at St. Cloud State (NC), 7:37 pm CT; Northern Michigan at Nebraska Omaha (NC), 7:37 pm CT; Colorado College at Air Force (NC), 7:05 pm MT; * North Dakota vs Alaska Anchorage (NC), 5:05 pm AT; UMass Lowell at Denver (NC), 7:37 pm MT. * Alaska Goal Rush (Fairbanks, AK).

Games for Saturday, Oct. 20: Minnesota at Michigan Tech (WCHA), 7:07 pm ET; * Merrimack vs Alaska Anchorage (NC), 4:05 pm AT; Lake Superior at Bemidji State (NC), 7:07 pm CT; Rensselaer at Minnesota State (NC), 7:07 pm CT; Alabama-Huntsville at St. Cloud State (NC), 7:07 pm CT; Northern Michigan at Nebraska Omaha (NC), 7:07 pm CT; UMass Lowell at Colorado College (NC), 7:07 pm MT; Air Force at Denver (NC), 7:07 pm MT; * North Dakota at Alaska (NC), 7:05 pm AT. * Alaska Goal Rush (Fairbanks, AK).

More Friday reading: WCHA previews, weekend picks, Alabama-Huntsville’s hopes, weekend schedule

Here is the conference season preview I wrote along with colleague Tyler Buckentine, who is based in Minnesota.

Michigan Tech lost 4-2 at Lake Superior State on Thursday, something Tyler and I both predicted. We also picked MTU to win at home Saturday night against the Lakers. Here are the rest of the weekend’s picks.

Alabama-Huntsville needs to show it can compete in the WCHA and fill its arena with WCHA commissioner Bruce McLeod coming South to watch Minnesota State at the Chargers this weekend.

Here are the team season previews we wrote: Alaska-Anchorage, Bemidji State, Colorado College, Denver;

Michigan Tech, Minnesota, Minnesota-Duluth, Minnesota State;

Nebraska-Omaha, North Dakota, St. Cloud State and Wisconsin.

Here is this weekend’s schedule, courtesy of the WCHA. Michigan Tech lost at LSSU 4-2 Thursday night.

Fri
10/12/12
Michigan State
at Minnesota
6:07 p.m. CT
Fri
10/12/12
St. Cloud State
at New Hampshire
7:30 p.m. ET
Fri
10/12/12
Minnesota State
at Alab-Huntsville
7:00 p.m. CT
Fri
10/12/12
Wisconsin
vs Northern Michigan
7:05 p.m. CT
Fri
10/12/12
Ohio State
at Minnesota Duluth
7:07 p.m. CT
Fri
10/12/12
USA Under-18 Team
at North Dakota
7:37 p.m. CT
Fri
10/12/12
Clarkson
at Colorado College
7:37 p.m. MT
Fri
10/12/12
Army
vs Nebraska Omaha
9:00 p.m. CT
Fri
10/12/12
Canisius
at Alaska Anchorage
8:07 p.m. AT
Sat
10/13/12
Notre Dm/Maine
vs Nebraska Omaha
3:30/6:30 p.m. CT
Sat
10/13/12
St. Cloud State
at New Hampshire
7:00 p.m. ET
Sat
10/13/12
Lake Superior
at Michigan Tech
7:07 p.m. ET
Sat
10/13/12
Minnesota State
at Alab-Huntsville
7:00 p.m. CT
Sat
10/13/12
Wisconsin
vs Northern Michigan
7:05 p.m. CT
Sat
10/13/12
Ohio State
at Minnesota Duluth
7:07 p.m. CT
Sat
10/13/12
USA Under-18 Team
at Bemidji State
7:07 p.m. CT
Sat
10/13/12
Clarkson
at Colorado College
7:07 p.m. MT
Sat
10/13/12
Michigan State
at Minnesota
8:07 p.m. CT
Sat
10/13/12
Air Force
at Alaska Anchorage
7:07 p.m. AT

Thursday reading: Huntsville, WCHA update, NCHC postseason venue, MSU-Mankato, Penner, Duluth commit, offseason player moves

The WCHA will talk about adding Alabama-Huntsville as its 10th member for the 2013-14 season at next week’s meetings in Detroit.

UAH makes a strong case and could be brought in for the good of college hockey and its only Division I foothold in the southern United States.  Here is a look at the other important issues to be decided next week.

CHN has more, including Bruce McLeod‘s future and that the WCHA is waiting on the National Collegiate Hockey Conference to finalize its postseason venue arrangements before it makes its announcement.

Alaska-Fairbanks is looking for a new assistant coach.

Here  is the RPI fan blog’s Without a Peer’s write-up on future foe MSU-Mankato and a feature on the Kings’ Dustin Penner, a former college player.

Minnesota-Duluth adds a high-end Minnesota high school commit.

Lost track of who plays where in college hockey? Start with this list of offseason player moves.

Around the WCHA: Mankato downs UNO; CC stays alone in third

A tight league race got even tighter with 11th-place Mankato’s win over fourth-place Nebraska Omaha keeping the red Mavs a point behind third-place Colorado College with 10 games remaining for most WCHA teams. Five points separate third-place CC and St. Cloud State, which is tied with Michigan Tech for seventh.

Here’s the Gazette’s look at the Tigers’ chance at the WCHA title. Road points at No. 1 Minnesota Duluth will be tough to come by though. Here’s the game story on the 2-1 road loss for CC at No. 4 Minnesota.

Capsules compiled from school web sites …

Minnesota State 5, Nebraska Omaha 4 OT

MANKATO — Sophomore forward Johnny McInnis scored at 3:05 of overtime to help Minnesota State earn a split of a weekend series with at 5-4 victory against Nebraska Omaha on Saturday at Verizon Wireless Center. UNO won in OT Friday.

On the game-winning goal, Joe Schiller grabbed a loose puck at center ice and fed Johnny McInnes who beat UNO’s John Faulkner with a wrist shot from the top of the circles.

The goal capped off a wild, back-and-forth game that saw UNO take three one-goal leads and then have to score with an extra attacker in the final 10 seconds to send the game to overtime.

Wisconsin 3, Alaska Anchorage 2

MADISON, Wis. — A goal by freshman Joseph LaBate with just over four minutes remaining in the game broke a 2-2 tie and lifted the Badgers (12-10-2, 7-9-2 WCHA) to a win Saturday night and a weekend sweep over Alaska Anchorage (6-14-2, 3-14-1 WCHA) at the Kohl Center.

With the game tied at two and just over four minutes left in the third period, junior Justin Schultz and LaBate took off on the rush. After LaBate got the puck from linemate Mark Zengerle inside the UW blue line, he skated through center ice, then dished off to Schultz streaking down the right wing. Schultz skated behind the goal line, then gave it back to LaBate in front for the score.

“Coach just told us to get pucks in the net and get pucks in deep and go from there,” LaBate said. “I got the puck in the center from (Mark) Zengerle, a great pass from him, and I gave it to (Justin) Schultz who was streaking down the wing and I just went to the net, he put it on my stick and I put it in.”

The goal lifted a tense crowd into celebration and a charging Badger team two games above .500 as the defense held strong for the final minutes of the contest. Wisconsin improved 7-2-1 in its last 10 contests.

No. 17 North Dakota 3, St. Cloud State 2

ST. CLOUD — The St. Cloud State University men’s hockey team suffered a tough 3-2 loss to #17 North Dakota at the National Hockey Center in St. Cloud, MInn. on Jan. 21. The loss moves SCSU’s record to 10-12-4, 7-8-3 WCHA, while North Dakota improved its record to 13-10-2, 9-9-0 WCHA.

Corban Knight recorded two goals an assist to pace North Dakota.

The results of the weekend in WCHA play moved the Huskies into a tie for seventh place along with Michigan Tech (17 points each), while North Dakota moved into sixth place with 18 points on the season.

No. 1 Minnesota Duluth 4, Alabama Huntsville 3

DULUTH — The No. 1 team in the nation got another three-point night from the No. 1 scorer in the nation Saturday and equally as important, got a clutch third-period goal from rookie left winger Caleb Herbert en route to a 4-3 win over the University of Alabama-Huntsville.

Minnesota Duluth wasted little time getting to work, striking first on senior center Jack Connolly’s 14th goal of the year 1:07 into the opening period. A power play tally by the Chargers at the 1:55 mark and a full-strength marker less than a minute later gave Alabama-Huntsville a brief 2-1 lead. The defending NCAA Champion Bulldogs knotted the score three minutes later on a one-time goal by sophomore right winger Joe Basaraba (with an assist to Connolly) and went into the first intermission in a 2-2 deadlock.

Connolly’s second goal of the evening put UMD back in front 2:12 into the second stanza before the Chargers tied it back up with 12:11 to go in the period. Connolly, who now has 40 points on the year, extended his personal scoring streak to 22 games, equaling the UMD single-season record set by another All-American center, Mark Pavelich in 1978-79.

“I’m just trying to go out there and help the guys,” said Connolly, who has recorded three or more points on seven occasions this winter. “Hopefully I can keep this streak going for a couple more games. It’s nice to share this kind of record.”

Northern Michigan 5, Michigan Tech 2

HOUGHTON — Freshman forward David Johnstone scored twice but the Michigan Tech Huskies were defeated by the Northern Michigan Wildcats, 5-2, on Saturday night at the John MacInnes Student Ice Arena.

Bemidji State, Denver IDLE

Current standings follow …

WCHA Games
Overall
GP
W
L
T
Pts
GF
GA
W
L
T
GF
GA
Minnesota
18
13
5
0
26
61
35
17
9
1
103
56
Minnesota Duluth
16
11
3
2
24
66
37
17
4
3
95
56
Colorado College
18
11
7
0
22
69
57
14
9
1
84
68
Nebraska Omaha
18
9
6
3
21
57
56
12
10
4
79
76
Denver
16
8
5
3
19
56
50
13
8
3
85
67
North Dakota
18
9
9
0
18
47
49
13
10
2
73
70
Michigan Tech
16
8
7
1
17
53
49
11
12
1
70
71
St. Cloud State
18
7
8
3
17
54
52
10
12
4
80
77
Wisconsin
18
7
9
2
16
51
55
12
10
2
76
68
Bemidji State
16
5
9
2
12
41
55
11
11
2
66
67
Minnesota State
18
4
13
1
9
46
70
8
17
1
70
90
Alaska Anchorage
18
3
14
1
7
37
73
6
14
2
54
82

Around the WCHA: Tigers bounce back for 2-1 win

CC senior Tim Hall banged in a rebound off a shot by William Rapuzzi with 36 seconds left to lift the 11th-ranked Tigers to a 2-1 win at No. 2/4 Minnesota and only two points out of first place in the WCHA.

Hall’s goal came only 41 seconds after Minnesota had tied the game at 1-1 off a Nick Bjugstad shot.

CC sophomore goalie Josh Thorimbert (9-3) continued his excellent play of late, making 38 saves for the victory. The teams resume the series at 4 p.m. Mountain live on FS North and tape-delayed to 6 p.m. on ROOT.

CC captain Nick Dineen opened the scoring five minutes into the second period, pouncing on a Minnesota turnover and sending a backhanded shot between Gophers goalie Kent Patterson‘s leg pads for a 1-0 lead that held up through a five-minute Gophers power play in the third.

No. 1 Minnesota-Duluth 2, Alabama-Huntsville 1

DULUTH — The Bulldogs improved to 15-1-3 of late despite 52 saves by future North Dakota goalie Clarke Saunders, who will transfer to Grand Forks this summer. Jack Connolly‘s assist on the game winner increased his points streak to 21 games in a row.

Wisconsin 4, Alaska Anchorage 0

MADISON — Freshman Joel Rumpel made 23 saves for his second career shutout in a row in a home win over the struggling Seawolves.

St. Cloud State 3, North Dakota 1

ST. CLOUD — Freshman goalie Ryan Faragher made 41 saves and Jarrod Rabey scored the game winner midway through the second period as the host Huskies rallied for the win.

Nebraska Omaha 2, Minnesota State 1

MANKATO — Bryce Aneloski scored a power-play goal 1:37 into overtime to lift Omaha past Minnesota State. Mankato’s Adam Mueller slashed Omaha goalie Ryan Massa (39 saves) 45 seconds into overtime. Dayn Belfour came in for Massa and recorded a single save for the win.

Around the WCHA: Duluth adds to school record unbeaten streak

No. 1 Minnesota-Duluth 5, No. 8/9 Western Michigan 2

KALAMAZOO, Mich. – Junior forward Mike Seidel had a goal and an assist as Minnesota Duluth swept its weekend series at Western Michigan with a 5-2 win on Saturday night at Lawson Ice Arena. The Bulldogs are on a school record 15-game unbeaten streak.

No. 10 Denver 5, Alabama-Huntsville 2

DENVER  – Junior forward Shawn Ostrow had a goal and an assist to help the Denver Pioneers capture a 5-2 victory against the Alabama-Huntsville Chargers on Saturday night at Magness Arena.

No. 3 Notre Dame 4, No. 5 Minnesota 3

MINNEAPOLIS  – Sophomore forward Nate Condon and freshman defenseman Ben Marshall each had two assists but Minnesota fell to Notre Dame, 4-3, in the US Hockey Hall of Fame game on Saturday night at Mariucci Arena.

North Dakota 3, Clarkson 1

WINNIPEG, Man. – Junior forward Carter Rowney scored two goals to lead North Dakota to a 3-1 win against Clarkson on Saturday night in the U.S. College Hockey Classic at the MTS Centre in Winnipeg, Manitoba.

Minnesota State 3, St. Lawrence 1

CANTON, N.Y. – Senior forward Justin Jokinen scored at 15:51 of the third period and the Mavericks would add an empty-netter as Minnesota State earned a 3-1 victory against St. Lawrence on Saturday night at Appleton Arena.

Wisconsin 2, RIT 1

MADISON, Wis. – Sophomore forward Mark Zengerle assisted on both Badger goals as Wisconsin earned a weekend sweep against RIT with a 2-1 win on Saturday night at Kohl Center