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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Most WCHA teams very hot or very cold going into break

Posted by: Roman Augustoviz under Gophers, Men's hockey Updated: December 18, 2012 - 11:35 AM

Who is hot going into the holiday break in the WCHA?

Here's a list -- not for Santa, for WCHA followers:


Minnesota State Mankato  7-1-0 in last eight games. ... Purple Mavericks are the surprise team of the WCHA so far under first-year coach Mike Hastings. After a 1-5-0 dip, MSU swept Wisconsin, Bemidji State and Alaska Anchorage and split with Nebraska Omaha. The Mavericks scored at least three goals in each game of their seven-game winning streak. ... The Mavericks play a home and home series with the Gophers on Jan. 25-26. They split a home and home with the U in early November.

North Dakota 4-0-1 in December. UND beat Colorado College 3-2 in overtime on Dec. 1, scoring in the last minute to tie. Next came a tie and win with Denver and a sweep of Michigan Tech. ... UND plays the Gophers at Mariucci on Jan. 18-19.


Gophers    6-1-3, nice record on paper. But the Gophers started the season tied for No. 1 in one national poll and have not been able to put any kind of winning streak together except for one of three games. Also have not swept a WCHA series in easier part of schedule. ... Still they are not losing often. In last 10 games, got three points against Alaska Anchorage and Wisconsin, swept Vermont, split with Nebraska Omaha and went back to a three-point weekend against Colorado College. The Tigers rallied from a 4-1 deficit to tie second game. ... Competition gets a couple notches higher with Boston College, Notre Dame and North Dakota -- all teams in the top seven or eight in the nation -- coming up soon.

Minnesota Duluth   4-1-1. In the past six games, the Bulldogs have a win and a tie with Michigan Tech, a split with Bemidji State and a sweep at Alaska Anchorage. Before that they were 1-6-2; they scored two goals or fewer in six of those games. ... UMD plays the Gophers at Mariucci on Feb. 22-23.

Wisconsin    3-0-3, the Badgers are showing signs of life after horrible start. In last six games have a tie and win against Denver, two ties with Michigan Tech and a sweep of Alabama Huntsville. Much better than a 0-5-2 stretch just before that. ... The Gophers took three of a possible four points when the Badgers visited Mariucci in mid-November. The two Big Ten-bound teams meet again at the Kohl Center on Feb. 17 and then outdoors in Chicago on Feb. 17.

St. Cloud State    3-0-0, the Huskies have moved into first place in the WCHA, one point ahead of Denver and North Dakota with three consecutive conference wins. Beat Nebraska Omaha in second game of their series and swept Colorado College. Huskies are 5-2-0 in last seven games. ... Huskies host the Gophers on Feb. 8-9.

Warming up

Bemidji St.    2-0-1 ... After three losses in a row, two to Minnesota State Mankato and one to Minnesota Duluth, have held opponent to one goal in last three games, beat UMD 2-1, tied Denver 1-1 and beat Pioneers 5-1 ... Play Gophers first time at home on last weekend of regular season, March 8-9


Nebraska Omaha  2-3-0 ... The red Mavericks had a seven-game winning streak going into December before the Gophers ended it with a 3-2 win. After that UNO has split with St. Cloud State and Minnesota State. ... Done with Gophers after recent split at Mariucci.

Icy cold

Alaska Anchorage  1-8-3, with four losses in row ... Got one point for a tie in three consecutive series with North Dakota, the Gophers and Bemidji State ... Split with St. Cloud State ... Then swept by Minnesota State Mankato and Minnesota Duluth ... Play Gophers second time Jan. 11-12 at Mariucci

Denver    0-5-3 ... Pioneers have scored only one goal in five of past eight games. ... DU was 9-1-0 and near top of national polls when it fell off the cliff. Started with home losses to Yale and New Hampshire. After that DU has lost and tied in three consecutive WCHA series with Wisconsin, North Dakota and Bemidji State. ... Pioneers play Gophers at Mariucci on March 1-2.

Michigan Tech   0-4-3 ... Michigan Tech's Mel Pearson was the WCHA coach of the last season, his first with the Huskies, but this season is not going as well. Slide started Nov. 30-Dec. 1 weekend, with loss and tie with Minnesota Duluth, then lost to Northern Michigan, tied twice with Wisconsin, got swept by North Dakota. ... Done with Gophers after split at Mariucci in first conference series in mid-October.

Colorado College    1-7-2 ... Tailspin began with being swept by Denver. Then tie with New Hampshire -- after rally from being down 4-0 -- loss to Yale, split with North Dakota, one-point from Gophers -- a tie after trailing 4-1 into third -- swept by St. Cloud State ... Opponents are averaging 4.4 goals in last 10 games and none have scored fewer than three . ... 0-4-1 in last five. ... Done with Gophers in regular season.


* The Gophers are No. 12 in the latest PairWise ratings. They are 3-2-1 against other TUCs, or teams under consideration. Their strength of schedule is 39th out of 59 Division I teams. ... North Dakota is No. 8 in the PairWise ranking and is only WCHA team above the Gophers.

* Home teams hold a slight edge in WCHA games this season, 33-31-14.

* WCHA teams are 28-20-4 in nonconference games, but that edge is entirely based on beating up on the independents, they are 7-0-1 against Alabama-Huntsville and Penn State, and on Atlantic Hockey, 5-0-1. WCHA teams are 8-11-0 vs. the CCHA, 3-4-1 vs. the ECAC and 5-5-1 against Hockey East.

* I went 6-1/2 (right), 3-1/2 (wrong) on my WCHA picks last week. There were three sweeps by UMD, UND and SCSU, Bemidji State's three-point weekend against Denver, and a split between UNO and MSU Mankato. Only series I got exactly right was the last one. Gotta do better than that. The Gophers were idle.






Baltimore 2 FINAL
Detroit 15
NY Yankees 5 FINAL
Philadelphia 5
Northeastern 1 FINAL
Boston 2
Miami-Fla 1 FINAL
Miami 7
Pittsburgh 8 FINAL
Toronto 7
San Francisco 4 FINAL
Oakland 9
Cleveland 0 FINAL
Cincinnati 10
Boston College 0 FINAL
Boston 1
Arizona State 0 FINAL
Arizona 4
Boston 79 FINAL
Cleveland 110
LA Lakers 103 FINAL
Charlotte 104
Sacramento 124 FINAL
New York 86
Houston 96 FINAL
Atlanta 104
Utah 93 FINAL
Memphis 82
Washington 92 FINAL
Chicago 97
Milwaukee 95 FINAL
Denver 106
Nashville 1 FINAL
New Jersey 3
Calgary 3 FINAL(OT)
Philadelphia 2
Washington 5 FINAL
Columbus 3
Buffalo 0 FINAL
Tampa Bay 3
Toronto 3 FINAL
Florida 2
Ottawa 2 FINAL(SO)
Minnesota 3
NY Islanders 2 FINAL(OT)
Dallas 3
Anaheim 4 FINAL
Arizona 1
Los Angeles 5 FINAL
Edmonton 2
San Jose 6 FINAL
Vancouver 2
Ole Miss 82 FINAL
Alabama 74
Eastern Mich 67 FINAL
Ball State 60
Kent State 81 FINAL
Bowling Green 80
Ohio 66 FINAL
Buffalo 93
Georgetown 60 FINAL
Butler 54
Toledo 77 FINAL
Central Mich 85
Rhode Island 59 FINAL
Dayton 75
Youngstown St 67 FINAL
Detroit 77
North Carolina 81 FINAL
Georgia Tech 49
Loyola-Maryland 45 FINAL
Holy Cross 62
Iowa 77 FINAL
Indiana 63
Akron 63 FINAL
Miami-Ohio 70
Army 52 FINAL
Navy 56
Maryland 60 FINAL
Rutgers 50
Kennesaw St 54 FINAL
USC Upstate 90
Jacksonville 63 FINAL
Fla Gulf Coast 81
Lipscomb 76 FINAL
Northern Ky 73
Stetson 67 FINAL
North Florida 81
Wright State 57 FINAL
Ill-Chicago 60
Western Mich 63 FINAL
Northern Ill 65
Nebraska Omaha 80 FINAL
North Dakota 78
Houston Baptist 71 FINAL
Abilene Christian 83
NC State 66 FINAL
Clemson 61
Texas A&M 62 FINAL
Florida 66
Kentucky 72 FINAL
Georgia 64
West Virginia 69 FINAL
Kansas 76
Auburn 61 FINAL
Missouri 63
Michigan 78 FINAL
Northwestern 82
Villanova 76 FINAL
Creighton 72
Longwood 55 FINAL
Gardner-Webb 63
Charleston Southern 39 FINAL
Presbyterian 47
Coastal Carolina 54 FINAL
UNC-Asheville 68
UMass Lowell 60
West Virginia 55 FINAL
Kansas State 59
Texas 79
Fresno State 61 FINAL
Air Force 41
San Jose St 76 FINAL
Boise State 91
Nevada 61 FINAL
Colorado State 68
San Diego State 76
Wyoming 61 FINAL
Utah State 57
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