Thursday reading: WCHA column, Winkler, Heil, Rothstein, Enga, Slavvin

I started new irregular features in the weekly WCHA column on USCHO, one focusing on an “unsung hero” for Bemidji State who has a young daughter and wife and still manages to find time to be a league academic honoree and log a lot of quality ice time for the Beavers. The Series Spotlight segment, naturally, deals with CC and Denver this weekend starting the annual battle for the Gold Pan Trophy, pictured.

CC senior Scott Winkler has the best numbers of any NCAA prospect for the Stars, especially in plus/minus.

Chicago Steel forward and CC commit Christian Heil scored two goals in 34 seconds during the third period of Sunday’s 5-2 loss to Indiana.  It gives the 18-year-old five goals over his last four games and pushed him into a tie for third in the USHL with 10 goals this season.

Future Tiger Sam Rothstein scored two goals for the Sioux Falls Stampede Saturday in the team’s USHL-leading eighth home win.

Former Tiger RJ Enga and CC commit Jaccob Slavin played key roles in Team USA’s World Junior A challenge championship. Enga served at an assistant coach while Slavin was an assistant captain.

Former Penn State club coach Joe Battista penned this column praising Air Force coach Frank Serratore and hockey people in general.

Tuesday reading: Engelstad, CC seniors, Kerdiles, commits, web poll

As part of its NCAA deal, the Ralph Engelstad Arena removed some Sioux references (though certainly not all). Courtesy GOON’S WORLD.

The seven CC seniors have stepped forward into the leadership roles nicely through the first two weeks of the season.

Badgers freshman Nic Kerdiles will serve his suspension and stay at Wisconsin, easing fears he would bolt for the WHL.

Bemidji State adds a commit while Minnesota added two. Here is the weekly WCHA web media poll:

Team Pts Previous Record High Low
1) Minnesota (9) 141 1 3-1-0 1 2
2) Denver (3) 131 3 2-0-0 1 3
3) North Dakota 123 2 1-1-0 2 4
4) Minnesota Duluth 96 4 2-2-0 4 8
5) Michigan Tech 87 8 2-2-0 3 9
6) Colorado College 80 5 3-1-0 4 10
7) St. Cloud State 72 7 2-2-0 4 9
8) Nebraska Omaha 67 6 2-2-0 4 10
9) Minnesota State 52 10 2-0-2 5 11
10) Wisconsin 46 9 0-2-0 6 12
11) Bemidji State 24 11 1-1-0 9 12
12) Alaska Anchorage 17 12 2-1-1 10 12
Representing Name Publication Twitter
Alaska-Anchorage, Taylor Hall College Hockey News @thall907
Bemidji State, Troy Mills The Beaver Pond
Colorado College, Joe Paisley, Paisley Hockey @Paisleyhockey
Denver, Mike Chambers, Denver Post @MChambersDP
Michigan Tech, Tim Braun, Tech Hockey Guide @TBraunTHG
Minnesota, Dan Myers, Minnesota Hockey Magazine @1DanMyers
Minnesota Duluth, Bruce Ciskie, The Ciskie Blog @BruceCiskie
Minnesota State, Chris Dilks, Western College Hockey @ChrisDilks
Nebraska-Omaha, Matt Semisch, Radio Free Omaha @matthewsemisch
North Dakota, Eric Burton The Hockey Writers Combine and Goon’s World @goon48
St. Cloud State, Jeremy Larson, Husky Hockey Time @jclarson02
Wisconsin, Andy Johnson, Bucky’s 5th Quarter @andyjohnsonB5Q

More Thursday reading: Enga, WCHA notebook, NHL family links, CC-UMass Lowell connections, Denver, Air Force preview video

Former Tiger R.J. Enga, an assistant with the USHL’s Chicago Steel where CC commits Christian Heil, Jaccob Slavin and Alex Roos play, will serve as an assistant for the U.S. team at the World Junior A Challenge next month.

Here is my first USCHO notebook on the WCHA. I wrote the portions dealing with Alabama-Huntsville, the arrested ref, senior Joe Howe, Denver and part of the Omaha arena blurb.

Three Tigers’ fathers all played in the NHL. The Gazette looks into how that affected the sons, Cody Bradley, Alexander Krushelnyski and Charlie Taft.

Here are the weekly CC preview notes.

Former Pikes Peak Miner and Colorado Springs native Josh Holmstrom said he is excited to get to play in Colorado for the first time in his college career at No. 10 UMass Lowell. I plan to write a feature on him and his older brother Ben Holmstrom, now in the Flyers organization with Jeff Dimmen and Mike Testwuide, for next week’s Woodmen Edition.

Lowell head coach Norm Bazin and associate head coach Jason Lammers both served as assistants under CC coach Scott Owens, which is partly why this series became possible.

Denver’s Nolan Zajac chose DU despite his older brothers going to North Dakota. Their father Tom was a Pioneer in the 1970s.

Air Force coach Frank Serratore talks about last weekend and the upcoming CC and Denver games in this video:

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Saturday reading: Alabama-Huntsville, North Dakota, Miami, All-American Prospects Game, schedule, Denver, Irish, ECAC

Here is a short profile on the new Alabama-Huntsville coach.

The North Dakota season preview supplement can be viewed here.

Miami senior defenseman Steven Spinell is also featured.

Remember – you can watch the CCM/USA Hockey All-American Prospects Game tonight at 7 p.m. ET live, for free, on http://FastHockey.com

The College Hockey News recaps the offseason.

Three nonconference games open the season on Oct. 6 with most programs playing exhibition games. The first exhibition contest is Friday with Regina at Alaska-Fairbanks.

Due to Wednesday’s first presidential debate, the Pioneers will practice off campus until Oct. 8.

Notre Dame adds a commit from a goalie.

Here are both ECAC preseason polls. New Hampshire signed a 6-foot-5 goalie.

Thursday reading: UNO, CC, UND, Duluth, Hockey East, Mankato

Incoming Nebraska Omaha freshman goalie Anthony Stolarz, a 2012 second round draft pick of the Flyers, pictured, may be the key to the Mavericks’ success this coming season. Here is some more background on how far the NAHL standout has come.

NHL Central Scouting announced its preliminary 2013 draft watch list and CC 2013/14 defenseman commit Gustav Oloffson of the Colorado Thunderbirds and 2014 defenseman Teemu Kivilhalme were both rated. Kivilhalme is considered as a C-level prospect while Oloffson is  B-level.

Peter Stoykewych’s younger brother Paul was rated as was Jake Guentzel.

Former Merrimack commit and BCHL standout Wade Murphy visited North Dakota on Monday and soon committed.

The Karson Kuhlman commit continues a trend of northern Minnesota talent heading to Minnesota-Duluth.

As usual, there are plenty of impact freshmen joining Hockey East this coming season.

Former MSU-Mankato captain David Backes and North Dakota standout Jonathan Toews are featured in the NHLPA video concerning the lockout.

Ticket sales have been slow for Penn State’s first season of Division I hockey so far. A few wins will change that quickly.

Union received their 2011-12 ECAC championship rings.

Thursday reading: Red and purple Mavs updates, UND, WCHA scholarships

MSU Mankato coach Mike Hastings garnered his first commits.

Nebraska Omaha announced its six-member freshman class, including three forwards, two defensemen and a goalie.

Brad Berry, pictured, was officially hired as an assistant at North Dakota. He spent two years coaching the Columbus defensemen.

WCHA announced its post-graduate scholarships which includes goalie Brad Eidsness.

As expected, it looks like the WCHA will alternate with the Big 10 though league officials refuse to confirm.

Seven sign on with Tigers; four coming this fall

Here is the CC press release ….

Colorado College has received signed letters of intent from seven hockey players who will enroll at and play for CC in the future, head coach Scott Owens announced today.

The list of Tigers-to-be includes five forwards and two defensemen. Four will join the team later this year as freshmen on the 2012-13 roster, while three more will arrive in time for the 2013-14 season.
Additions for the ’12-13 campaign are center Cody Bradley of Tampa, Fla., left wing Hunter Fejes of Anchorage, Alaska, and right wing Jared Hanson of Palmer, Alaska, along with defenseman Michael King of Prince George, British Columbia.

“We are very pleased with the talent, skill and character of this group,” said Owens. “Joe and Eric (assistant coaches Joe Bonnett and Eric Rud) have done a great job of bringing this class together. We’re bringing in an excellent mix of hockey ability, size and players who come from winning programs. I’m very excited to see them on the ice in the fall and to watch their development while at Colorado College.”

Bradley, 5-10 and 166 pounds, has played in 15 games for the Dubuque Fighting Saints of the United States Hockey League this season, scoring six goals and adding four assists. In time split between Dubuque and the USHL’s Indiana Ice, he’s collected 18 points (9g,9a) in 31 games. His father, Brian Bradley, played 14 years in the National Hockey League before retiring with 503 career points (182g,321a) in 1998. The Fighting Saints wrap up their regular season this weekend before opening Clark Cup playoffs action as a No. 3 seed in the USHL East.

“Cody is a skilled, clever center iceman,” Owens said. “He has the ability to score goals and to distribute the puck as well. He gets around the sheet very well and is suited to our style of play here at CC.”

Fejes, a standout at Shattuck-St. Mary’s School in Faribault, Minn., is ranked 91st among North American skaters in the final 2012 draft rankings released earlier this week by the National Hockey League. At 6-1 and 191 pounds, he is expected to be selected within the top five rounds in June. Shattuck-St. Mary’s, a perennial powerhouse in the USA Hockey Tier I Under-18 ranks, recently claimed its fifth national championship in nine years with an overall record of 50-5-2. Fejes led the team with 38 goals and finished second with 78 points in 55 games.

“Hunter is a power left wing who also can score,” said Owens. “He has the ability to get to the net front and makes good things happen down low.”

The 6-0, 190-pound Hanson, currently in his second full season with the USHL West-leading Lincoln Stars, has compiled 51 points (26g,25a), four game-winning goals and a +29 plus-minus rating in 53 appearances so far in 2011-12. Lincoln currently leads the second-place Omaha Lancers by one point in the conference standings, with two games to play. The Stars finished fifth in the West Conference during Hanson’s rookie season in 2010-11.

“Jared has had an excellent season for Lincoln,” Owens said. “He’s continued to get better and better all year long. He’s a goal scorer, with 22 of his 26 tallies so far having come in 5-on-5 situations.”

King, 6-4 1/2 and 210 pounds, finished the 2011-12 season with the Lloydminster Bobcats of the Alberta Junior Hockey League. He collected 19 points (4g,15a) in 32 games with the Westside Warriors of the British Columbia Junior Hockey League before being traded, then added a power-play goal and two assists in five appearances, including a pair of playoff games, with Lloydminster. In 2010-11, he compiled 23 points (5g,18a) while playing in 48 outings for Westside.

“Michael has very good foot speed and stick skills for a young man his size,” said Owens. That range and mobility will enable him to improve and develop throughout the season as he adjusts to the tempo and rigor of the WCHA.”

Also signing letters of intent to join the Tiger Hockey family a year later, in time for the 2013-14 season and CC’s debut as a member of the of the National Collegiate Hockey Conference, were forwards Matt Hansen of St. Cloud, Minn., and Christian Heil of Westminster, Colo., as well as defenseman Jaccob Slavin of Erie, Colo., who all will play another year of junior hockey before launching their collegiate careers.

“Matt, Christian and Jaccob represent the beginning of a projected, very strong class in 2013,” said Owens, who has compiled a record of 299-185-43 (.608) in 13 years behind the bench. “All three are playing significant minutes for their respective junior teams at this time. Matt has tremendous speed and skill, Christian is a power forward with the ability to make plays and finish, and Jaccob plays both ends of the rink extremely well as an offensive ‘D-man’ who can defend as well. We are extremely pleased to have them as future Tigers and look forward to monitoring their progress next season.”

Hansen, who actually signed his letter of intent previously, currently plays for the Austin (Minn.) Bruins of the North American Hockey League, while Heil and Slavin are teammates with the Chicago Steel of the USHL.

Tigers To Be
Name                Pos.    Hgt.     Wgt.     Shoots        DOB            Hometown                              Arrival at CC

Cody Bradley       C      5-10     166            L           5/26/94          Tampa, Fla./Dubuque (USHL)          2012-13
Hunter Fejes      LW      6-1       191            L           5/31/94         Anchorage/Shattuck-St. Mary’s       2012-13
Christian Heil        F      6-1       178            L           3/25/95         Westminster/Chicago (USHL)         2013-14
Matt Hansen         F     5-10      163            R           5/11/93          St. Cloud, Minn./Austin (NAHL)       2013-14
Jared Hanson    RW     6-0       190            R           1/24/93        Palmer, Alaska/Lincoln(USHL)      2012-13
Michael King        D      6-4 1/2   210            R           1/22/93      Prince George, B.C./(AJHL)          2012-13
Jaccob Slavin      D       6-2       170            L            5/1/94           Erie, Colo./Chicago(USHL)            2013-14

Update: Bradley commits to CC this fall

Dubuque Fighting Saints forward Cody Bradley has committed to play for Colorado College. He will be the first Floridan to play for the Tigers.

The 5-foot-10, 166-pound forward from Tampa will join CC this fall after compiling 10 points (6g, 4a) with Dubuque. In time split between the Saints and Indiana Ice this season, he recorded 18 points (9g,9a) in 31 games.

He recorded 20 points (11g,9a) in 51 games with Indiana his rookie season.

“After taking a look at all my options and talking with the coaching staff, I felt like Colorado College would be the best fit for me,” Bradley said in a Dubuque press release. “I want to go to a school that will give me an opportunity to play right away. I know that I’ll be able to make an impact as a freshman at CC.”

He is the son of 14-year NHL veteran Brian Bradley, who recorded 86 points in 80 games with Tampa Bay during the 1992-93 season.

The signing period starts on Wednesday and lasts until August.

He is expected to join newcomers Hunter Fejes, Jared Hanson, and Michael King this fall. With CC expected to go from 28 players to the usual 26 on the active roster, that leaves one or two spots open after six seniors graduated and sophomore Jaden Schwartz left the program early. Dakota Eveland will miss next season to recover from neck surgery.

Colorado College will spend one more season in the WCHA before joining the new National Collegiate Hockey Conference in 2013-14.

Two former Saints are already with the Tigers – both Jordan DiGiando and Scott Wamsganz moved on after helping the Saints to a Clark Cup championship last year.

“I’m really happy for Cody Bradley,” said Saints head coach Jim Montgomery. “He’s an exceptional player who is going to an exceptional college hockey program. Our fans got a glimpse of Cody’s ability to make plays this year, and we wish Cody the best of luck in his collegiate career.”

Monday reading: CC-UMD home dates, Jutting reassignment reaction, season reviews, Frozen 4, NHL draft prospects, commits news

Colorado College hosts Minnesota Duluth Jan. 18-19, 2013, according to UMD’s tentative 2012-13 schedule. Here are some of the incoming freshmen that may make that trip.

As posted earlier, CC will play North Dakota four times next season according to a tentative schedule compiled by the Grand Forks Herald. The dates are UND at CC Nov. 30 and Dec. 1 and the Tigers in Grand Forks Jan. 11-12, 2013.

UMD at home followed by a road trip to Grand Forks? There’s an early taste of the new National Collegiate Hockey Conference for Tiger fans.

Here is a review of North Dakota’s season and a look back at a special Minnesota Duluth senior class that vaulted the Bulldogs into elite status.

Here’s a reaction to Mankato reassigning head coach Troy Jutting, who is indeed one of the good guys in the WCHA in my experience. Here is the beat writer’s take with additional info and more reaction.

Inside College Hockey breaks down each Frozen Four semifinal: Boston College-Minnesota at 6 p.m. Mountain on Thursday (ESPN2) and Union-Ferris State at 2:30 Mountain (ESPNU).

Here is a Q&A with Union captain Nolan Julseth-White and one for Avs draft pick Paul Carey of BC.

College Hockey News named Colgate’s Austin Smith as its Player of the Year.

NHL Central Scouting announced its top 10 prospects in each junior/high school league in North America.

Minnesota Duluth brings in an NAHL goalie commit. UMD’s J.T. Brown made his NHL debut on Saturday and talked about an off-ice incident with Duluth police.

Former Bemidji State standout Drew Fisher has landed in the CHL.

The famed North Star J.P. Parise is profiled here. It is a good history piece hockey fans will enjoy.

Tuesday reading: Owens, Lowery, honors, MTU, commits

Tigers coach Scott Owens talked with Gazette columnist David Ramsey about this past season.

Former Tiger captain Ryan Lowery, pictured at left,was called up from ECHL Stockton to AHL Oklahoma City. Lowery had seven points in 22 games since being sent down to the Thunder from the Barons in February.

College Hockey News announced its national player honorees. No one from CC was honored.

Former CC assistant Norm Bazin was named as Coach of the Year by the New England Hockey Writers Association. He has already garnered the same honor from College Hockey News and Hockey East.

Michigan Tech is developing a good talent pipeline with the BCHL.

Here’s a copy of the latest list from Chris Heisenberg on CC’s commits. He does a good job of keeping track of every team.

COLORADO COLLEGE  Name  Commit date  Likely start at school  Previous team  Height, weight  Notes
. Jared Hanson-RW 3/12/12 Lincoln (USHL) 6′ 190 1-24-93
. Hunter Fejes-C 3/5/12 Shattuck St.Mary’s 6′ 165 5-31-94
. Alex Roos-RW 2/8/12 2013 or 2014 Team Illinois U18 5’8 150 12-5-94
. Daniel Labosky-LW 12/29/11 2013 or 2014 Benilde St.Margaret 5’6 150 5-24-95 2011 USA U17 Team
. Duggie Lagrone-RD 10/24/11 2013 Des Moines (USHL) 5’10 185 6-23-94
. Garrett Cecere-LD 8/18/11 2013 or 2014 Janesville (NAHL) 5’9 155 1-5-95 2011 USA U17 Team
. Gustav Olofsson-LD 3/11/11 2013 or 2014 Colorado Thunderbirds 6’1 170 12-1-94
. Jaccob Slavin-D 12/17/10 2013 Chicago (USHL) 6’2 167 5-1-94 2011 USA U18 Team
. Christian Heil-C 12/16/10 2013 Chicago (USHL) 5’11 150 3-25-94
. Michael King-D 12/7/10 Westside (BCHL) 6’4 200 1-22-93 48-5-18-23-22
. Matt Hansen-RW 10/5/10 Austin (NAHL) 5’10 163 5-11-93 44-5-5-10-4
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