Nebraska Omaha lost a key player on Thursday after Alex Hudson was dismissed from the team.
Hudson, a senior center, was named co-captain of the Mavericks before the season began. But he lost title when he was suspended for the first four games for an unspecified rules violation.
Now, after a second rules violation, he is no longer on the team.
Hudson was the Mavericks' top returning scorer this season. As a junior, he had 13 goals and 18 assists for 31 points and was a plus-14.
But this season he had only four goals and six assists for 10 points in 16 games even though he was playing on the Mavericks' top line until recently. His wings on that line were Matt White (9-16--24) an Terry Broadhurst (14-9--23).
Without Hudson, the only senior regular in the Mavericks lineup, UNO coach Dean Blais is quoted as saying in the Omaha World Herald that he will probably play only three lines instead of four. Only two true centers remain on the roster.
The Mavericks are 9-8-3 overall and 7-4-3 in the WCHA which gives them 17 points, good enough for third place behind co-leaders Minnesota Duluth and the Gophers.
UNO plays at Nebraska Omaha on Jan . 13-14 and the Gophers play there Feb. 24-25.
Hudson's name is no longer on the Mavericks' roster on their web site. He is 6-0, 209 from Corona, Calif. He had four game-winning goals last season and one this season.
It's hard to imagine Blais' Mavericks making a run at the WCHA title playing only three lines. Hudson being booted seems like a big loss.
Hudson had two goals, including the game-winner with 1:36 to play, as Nebraska Omaha beat the Gophers 5-4 at Mariucci in its first WCHA game ever on Oct. 15 of last season. The next night, the Mavericks won again, this time 4-2, and Hudson had an assist on the Mavericks' key third goal late in the second period.
swept the Gophers 5-4 and 4-2 to open WCHA play last season,