Roman Augustoviz spends Minnesota's winters covering college hockey, specifically the Gophers, and other University of Minnesota sports. During the summer, he writes about the WNBA's Minnesota Lynx, with a dose of U sports sprinkled in. Follow him on Twitter @RomanStrib.

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Michigan, Denver lose to Canadian teams, but U.S. teams go 12-2-1

Posted by: Roman Augustoviz under College hockey Updated: October 7, 2013 - 9:55 AM

Day 2 of the college hockey season saw a few more surprises but otherwise it was pretty predictable.

At the Ralph, North Dakota topped Manitoba 3-0, getting goals 75 seconds apart in the first period from sophomore Drake Caggiula and junior Michael Parks. Freshman Luke Johnson scored early in the third period; his goal was shorthanded and unassisted.

Clarke Saunders and Zane Gothberg combined for the shutout. Saunders played the first half of the game and had seven saves, including one on a penalty shot. Gothberg had 10 saves.

North Dakota was 0x8 on the power play against the Bisons.

U.S. teams went 12-2-1 against Canadian schools.

The two losers were Michigan which lost 2-1 to Waterloo and Denver which fell to New Brunswick 2-1. Lake Superior State also lost, but they fell 3-2 to the under-18 U.S. national team.

HIGHLIGHTS

* Minnesota State Mankato routed Lethbridge 7-1. The Pronghorns had lost 5-1 to the Gophers the night before. ... With the score tied 1-1, Matt Leitner scored the winner in the opening period and Teddy Blueger made it 3-1 Mavericks  with 2:55 left in the period. Blueger also had three assists.

Three MSU goalies rotated in net and stopped 11 shots. MSU fired 52 shots at the other netminder.

* There were two regular-season games. Colgate beat Ferris State 1-0. Kyle Baun got the goal midway through the middle period on a power play. Eric Mihalk made 25 saves for the shutout. ...Clarkson beat Niagara 2-0. Steve Perry made 30 saves for the shutout. Kyle Baun made 25 saves for the shutout.

* Denver outshot New Brunswick 38-21 but the Pioneers were 0x9 on the power play. N.B. took a 2-0 lead in the first period on goals on junior Sam Brittain at 12:13 and, on a power play, at 15:40. He stopped 15 shots in two periods. Freshman Evan Cowley had four saves in the third. Junior Daniel Doremus had a shorthanded goal for DU at 10:32 of the second period. ... Freshman center Matt Marcinew of Edina won  13x23 draws for the Pios.

* The University of Waterloo, in Waterloo, Ontario, edged Michigan 2-1 despite being outshot 35-22 at the Yost. Andrew Copp, an alternate captain, had the only goal for the Wolverines 25 seconds into the second period. The Warriors scored twice on rebounds on sophomore Steve Racine who played the first half of the game in the Michigan nets; freshman Zach Nagelvoort replaced him after the second goal.Coach Red Berenson played nine freshmen, including five forwards and three defensemen. Michigan opens its season at home on Thursday vs. Boston College, a traditonal Hockey East power.

Said Berenson, according to Michigan's web site, "Well, it's a little scary. Typically, a team like Boston College will come in with some of the best players in the country. We've got to play better without the puck, and I thought the Waterloo team played well without it and made it tough for us to get second shots. So once they got the lead, it made it tough for us, but Boston College will certainly be a whole new challenge."

* St. Cloud State coach Bob Motzko will debut his coach's show at 6 tonight on KSNI 1450-AM and 103.3-FM. It can also be heard on knsiradio.com.

U.S. college teams go 15-1-1 vs. Canada's teams in exhibitions

Posted by: Roman Augustoviz under College hockey Updated: October 6, 2013 - 2:06 AM

UMass-Lowell was the No. 1-rated team in preseason college polls, but the River Hawks, playing in their own rink, could manage no better than a 3-3 overtime tie against McGill.

Scott Wilson scored on a power-play with under 5 minutes left for UMass-Lowell to tie the score at 3 and the overtime was scorelss. The River Hawks did have a goal by Josh Holmstrom waived off because of goalie interference.

Doubt that tie will have any influence on the next polls -- nor should it.

The other U.S. teams went 15-1 against teams from Up North.

The one loss was by RIT, the Rochester Institute of Technology in New York lost 2-1 to Queen's University of Kingston, Ont. This was a case of as goalie standing on his head. Gaels' goalie Kevin Baile had 51 saves and RIT was 0-for-7 on the power play. The loss broke the Tigers' 19-game winning streak against Canadian schools. ... One highlight for RIT, the Tigers killed a five-minute major without allowing Queen's a shot on goal. Shots were 52-26.

For a story on the Gophers's exhibition vs. Lethbridge, go here.

Other notable exhibitions:

* New Hampshire, which plays in the Gophers' Ice Breaker next weekend, scored four goals in the second period, two of them in the final minute, to beat Acadia 6-3. ... Shots were 28 apiece, but the Wildcats had the big edge on special teams. Their power play was 3x7, Acadia's 0x5. .... Kyle Smith and Grayson Downing each scored twice for N.H.

* Ohio State, which will be in the Big Ten this season, routed Toronto 9-1. ... Junior Tanner Fritz led the Buckeyes with two goals and two assists. ... “Any time you can go out there and win that’s important, but it is how we played that was the biggest take away from this game,” said Steve Rohlik, the former UMD assistant who is in his first year as the Buckeyes’ head coach. “We played hard and unselfish; our guys executed well today.”

* Colorado College beat New Brunswick 5-0. Alexander Krushelnyski had a hat trick for the Tigers, who played three different goalies.

TWO REAL GAMES

In Niagara, there was a real game with some pomp and ceremony. But the home team, the Purple Knights lost 2-1 to the Clarkson Golden Knights. Clarkson is another team in the Ice Breaker.

Niagara raised two banners, one for winning the Atlantic Hockey regular-season title and another for their fourth NCAA appearance, but Clarkson was the better team.

Freshman Jackson Teichroeb made 39 saves for Niagare to keep the game close. Jarret Burton scored the game-winner at 14:17 of the third. ... Niagara had a 22-game home unbeaten streak.

In the other real game, Ferris State, a new member of the WCHA beat Colgate 7-4. The Raiders led 2-0 and 4-3 but the Bulldogs rallied each time. Garrett Thompson got the winner at 5:29 of the third on a power play.

* There was also a scrimmage worth mentioning. The Badgers played a Red vs. White scrimmage at Hobbs Ice Center in Eau Claire, Wis., on Saturday, with proceeds going to benefit the Blugolds hockey program. It packed the people in, 1,093. Mike Mersch, one of Wisconsin's talented veterans, scored with 1:04 left in the scrimmage to tie the score at 3-all.

College hockey drops the puck today

Posted by: Roman Augustoviz under College hockey Updated: October 5, 2013 - 3:07 AM

Today marks the official start of the college hockey season.

Teams can have full-length practices with their coaches and even schedule games.

There are two nonconference match-ups: Ferris State at Colgate (the Gophers women's team vs. Colagte is the early game at the Starr Rink in Hamilton, N.Y, 2 p.m.) and Clarkson at Niagara.

The other 18 college teams in action play teams from across the border, Canadian teams. So it's a U.S. vs. Canada day of exhibitions across the land.

The Big East and WCHA have four of their teams playing, the NCHA three, and the Big Ten, Atlantic and ECAC two apiece.

NCAA teams should win almost all these match-ups because the best Canadian hockey players are not at colleges. They have turned pro or are playing major juniors or are at American schools on scholarship. Figure U.S. teams should go 14-4, 15-3 something like that.

Alaska Anchorage, a WCHA holdover, got the jump on everyone Friday, beating British Columbia 2-1 in Anchorage on power play goals by junior D Austin Coldwell in the first and freshman F Dylan Hubbs in the 2. Freshman Michael Matyas was in the nets for first-year coach Matt Thomas.

What's interesting is some of the names of the Canadian schools: Wilfrid Laurier plays at Bowling Green, bet Wilfrid's players wear ties and carry their books ... Laurentian is at Michigan Tech. The Laurentian Divide determines which way water flows in northern Midwestern states; these guys must be geography majors eh? ...McGill is at UMass-Lowell, the No. 1 team in preseason NCAA polls. Sounds like the name of a school for lawyers.

The Gophers, of course, play the Lethbridge Pronghorns at 7 p.m. Used to know what a Pronghorn was, but I forgot.

We'll check the results of all these games closes but they will mean very little. This is a time for teams to experiment, to hit somebody beside a teammate and to get the competive juices flowing a bit.

Nobody will remember what happened in any of these games for long.

ETC.

* Penn State, which is going from an independent to a member of the Big Ten, had a midnight practice and a public skate to get fans out. Think the Nittany Lions are excited to get going?

* St. Cloud State, coming off a Frozen Four, will have two practices Saturday. ... Did you know Huskies' freshman had 64 goals last season -- thanks Mick Hatten, Huskies beat writer for St. Cloud Times -- or almost half of SCSU's total last year? ... If those sophomores get just a little better, watch out for the Huskies.

* The Wisconsin Badgers have a scrimmage in Eau Claire today, with any money made going to the Blugolds hockey team which just happens to be the defending Division III champion.

* The Unites States of Hockey blog listed 25 players to watch in college hockey this season. To find the list, go  here. Only one Gopher made the list, Kyle Rau, junior forward, at No. 8. ... Wisconsin had four players on it: sophomore forward Nic Kerdiles at No. 5, junior defenseman Jake McCabe at No. 13, and senior forwards Mike Mersch and Mark Zengerle at Nos. 19 and 21. ... No doubt the Badgers have some talent. Mersch carried UW the first half of the season and he is only at No. 19?

Goalies to get own national award

Posted by: Roman Augustoviz under Men's hockey, St. Cloud State Updated: October 4, 2013 - 2:51 AM

In major league baseball, pitchers rarely win the MVP Award. But they have their own award, the Cy Young.

Now so do goalies in college hockey.

Like pitchers, netminders rarely win the Hobey Baker Memorial Award, which goes to the top hockey player in the nation. But now they have their own award.

Let’s Play Hockey and the Herb Brooks Foundation, two established Minnesota hockey entities, have announced the creation of the Mike Richter Award which will got annually honor the most outstanding goalie in NCAA men’s hockey. The inaugural award will be presented during the 2014 Frozen Four.

College coaches wil make nominatd and the finalists and winner will be selected by a committee of coaches, scouts and media.

Richter was a former Wisconsin goalie in the late 1980s and then an NHL goalie for 14 years with the New York Rangers. He also compete in three Winter Olympics on the U.S. team.

Criteria for the word will go beyond just hockey skills. It will inclue academics and community service.

HONOR FOR SCSU's DAHL

Former St. Cloud State men's hockey coach will be admitted to the SCSU Athletic Hall of Fame on Saturday, Oct. 12 at 10 a.m. at the Herb Brooks National Hockey Center.

He will be one of eight inductees, the others:

  • Arlynn Anderson, men's gymnastics coach, 1966-78
  • John Blomlie, basketball and football, 1960-64
  • Richie Douglas, wrestling, 1986-91
  • Jack Harrison, basketball, 1961-64
  • Sarah (Loquai) DeJarnett, swimming and diving, 1994-98
  • Tina (Schreiner) Pendergast, basketball, 1997-2002
  • Distinguished Service Award honoree Carol Smith (posthumous)

Dahl was the Huskies coach for 18 seasons and won 338 games from 1987-2005. He also was there when they moved into Division I in 1987-88.

His teams went to five NCAA tournaments and won the Broadmoor Trophy in 2001.

He coached five All-America players and one Hobey Baker Memorial Award top three finalist in Mark Hartigan, in 2002. Seventeen of his former players reached the National Hockey League including Bret Hedican, Mark Parrish, Matt Cullen, Tyler Arnason, Ryan Malone and Duvie Westcott.

Dahl and the other inductees will be honored during the Huskies' season opener on Friday, Oct. 11 against Bemidji State at the Brooks Center.

BSU REBUILDING

Hopefully, Bemdiji coach Tom Serratore is not too superstitious. This is his 13th season as the Beavers head coach.

He has 15 players back, and 11 newcomers. And to start the season, he draws St. Cloud State, coming off a Frozen Four trip.

Last season Bemidji State was 6-22-8, 5-16-7, its lowest win total in 13 years. There's that number again. And BSU played top 25 teams 13 times, and averaged just over two goals per game.

“We only have 35 goals returning. That’s not a lot,” Serratore said in a BSU news release. “We are going to have to have some veterans take a step forward and I think we will, but we will also need to insert some freshmen into some roles that will be fun for them. It will be baptism by fire for some of those freshmen, but it’s also going to be exciting.”

“This is the youngest team I’ve ever coached. You wonder who is going to score and who is going to immerge, but I think you also need to look at things in a positive way. It’s going to be great to work with such young kids. There is nothing like youthful energy and enthusiasm.”

The captain of the Beavers is junior defenseman Matt Prapavessis of Oakville, Ontario.

The alternate captains are senior forward Matt Hartmann of White Bear Lake and senior forward Jeff Jubinville of Edmonton, Alberta.

Etc.

* Denver is cominf off its 12th 20-win season in a row -- the longest such streak in the nation. First-year coach Jim Montgomery will lead the Pioneers vs. New Brunswick in a home exhibition game at Magness Arena.

N.B. has some talent, it is the defending Canada Inter-university Sport champion after going 31-7 a year ago and 4-1 in exhibitions so far this season.

Montgomery coached the Dubuque Figthing Saints to two Clark Cups in the past three USHL seasons. He has 16 lettermen and 10 freshmen at DU. New Brunswick plays at Colorado College on Friday.

North Dakota hits the ice on Sunday

Posted by: Roman Augustoviz under College hockey, North Dakota Updated: October 3, 2013 - 1:51 AM

North Dakota will play a familiar exhibition patsy in Manitoba at 7 p.m. Sunday at the Ralph.

UND is 8-0 under coach Dave Hakstol against the Bisons, winning those games by a combined score of 51-17.

Of course, most U.S. Division I teams should beat the Canada's universities. That country's best college-age hockey players aren't going to school but playing juniors or on pro teams.

It seems UND is trying to help those programs, too. North Dakota has three exhibition games against  schools in Canada. The other two are Jan. 3-4 when UND travels to British Columbia and Simon Fraser, respectively. Maybe Hakstol is trying to recruit a few players up there, too.

UND also as a fourth exhibition game against the U18 U.S. national team on Oct. 26 at home. So plenty of opportunity to try new lineups or play the end of the bench.

North Dakota is ranked No. 6 in the USCHO web poll and No. 7 in the USA Today poll and picked to finish second in the new National Collegiate Hockey Conference.

Hakstol has 18 returning lettermen, including an NCAA-high of 15, according to UND media relations, who have been taken in the NHL draft. (The Gophers have 13 NHL draft picks on their roster.) Five of those UND draftees are incoming freshmen.

UND also has four Minnesotans on its roster: two juniors, defenseman Nick Mattson of Chanhassen and forward Connor Gaarder of Edina, sophomore goalie Zane Gothberg of Thief River Falls and freshman defensman Gage Ausmus of East Grand Forks.

Hakstol has had nine winning seasons in a row, and UND has appeared in the NCAA tournament 11 years in a row -- the longest current streak. His overall record is 235-119-37 for a .648 winning percentage. His WCHA mark was 143-82-27, a .621 winning pace.

2013 NCAA champion Yale, after vanquishing the Gophers last March, beat UND 4-1 in a regional final in the NCAA tournament.

UND finished 23-13-7 overall, 14-7-7 WCHA. Its top returning scorer is Rocco Grimaldi (13-23-36), He was a plus-14 player.

TWO FROM U GOING TO ITALY

Two University of Minnesota students, junior Ellie Gleason and sophomore Molly Sparks, have been named to the U.S. women's team that will compete in the 2013 Winter World University Games from Dec. 10-21 in Trentino, Italy.

Not heard those names before? Well, neither of them play for the Gophers. Instead, both are on the U of M women's club team which finished second in the Division I ACHA national tournament in Wooster, Ohio last season. The U lost to Northeastern 3-1 in the title game.

Gleason is a defenseman from Edina, Sparks a forward from Eagan.

The U of M women's club team practices at Mariucci Arena just like the Gophers men's team does.

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