Frozen Four players don't mind extra wait

  • Article by: JASON GONZALEZ , Star Tribune
  • Updated: April 2, 2014 - 5:55 AM

The NCAA semifinalists will endure a break of at least 11 days between games, but they plan to make the most of it.

hide

Gophers coach Don Lucia had to like what he saw on the scoreboard during his team’s 4-0 victory over St. Cloud State. Now comes the wait until April 10 for the Frozen Four.

Photo: Ann Heisenfelt • Associated Press,

CameraStar Tribune photo galleries

Cameraview larger

 

Extra time to prepare for the Frozen Four isn’t a bad thing — at least according to “Johnny Hockey.”

Boston College winger Johnny Gaudreau, the nation’s leading scorer and Hobey Baker Award favorite, said skipping a weekend between the NCAA hockey regionals and the Frozen Four will be just fine.

“It’s fun to be at practice and hanging out this time of year,” Gaudreau said Tuesday. “We’re just making sure we’re having good practices throughout the week. Right now we’re playing good hockey, and we have to make sure we stay energized.”

Both the Gophers and Boston College gained Frozen Four berths on Sunday, a day after North Dakota and Union advanced. But the Frozen Four semifinals — the Gophers face North Dakota and BC plays Union — aren’t until April 10 in Philadelphia.

The weekend off, to avoid conflict with the NCAA basketball Final Fours, might cause the teams to lose momentum. Several Gophers felt they played their best game of the season in Sunday’s 4-0 victory over St. Cloud State.

Nate Condon, however, greets the long break with the same enthusiasm as Gaudreau. The Gophers senior center says the team will gain motivation knowing rival North Dakota is waiting in the semifinals.

“North Dakota is one of our favorite games, especially for our upperclassmen, so just having it at a Frozen Four setting will help even more getting us motivated,” Condon said. “We might have more fun this week since we do have a long break before the games, but when it comes down to it, the guys will be ready to go.”

Gophers coach Don Lucia has been on both sides of Frozen Four scheduling. His 1997 Colorado College Frozen Four team played in a national semifinal four days after advancing through the regional. His four previous trips to the Frozen Four with the Gophers (2002, 2003, 2005, 2012) all included a week off. Lucia understands the reasoning for the week off but wouldn’t be against moving the tournament up a few days.

“It’s a quick turnaround when you play in your regional on Saturday or Sunday and you’re at the Frozen Four three or four days later,” Lucia said. “For a fan’s perspective and planning purposes, the extra days help. Maybe it’d be great if [the Frozen Four] was a few days earlier … but we all have to go through it. And we’ve been through it enough times to understand how you play in the following Thursday. So I don’t know how much of a bearing [the scheduling is] going to have with a few extra days off.’’

Time off could be an advantage for Boston College. The Eagles are heading into their third weekend of no hockey in the past month and have become comfortable with the extra time to prepare.

They earned a bye in the first round of the Hockey East tournament, then lost a best-of-three quarterfinal series, forcing the group into another week off before the NCAA tournament.

However, last weekend’s run through the Northeast Regional showed no signs of rust from the extra breaks. Gaudreau, a junior who played on BC’s 2012 title team, had eight points in two games and leads the nation in goals (35), assists (42) and points (77).

“We’re certainly getting used to [extra time off]. … It’s become par for the course,” BC coach Jerry York said. “But we all get here by different routes. … You start from scratch this weekend and have good practices and get ready to play.”

Union coach Rick Bennett likes the scheduling format. It gives players a chance to get back in the routine of school and enables the student body to rally around the programs, he said.

Union senior defenseman Mat Bodie said he is hopeful that any accumulated rust is gone five minutes into the game. Boston College already had scored two goals by that point in Saturday’s Northeast Regional opener in its first game in 13 days.

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

ADVERTISEMENT

Cincinnati - M. Latos 6:05 PM
Baltimore - B. Norris
Boston - J. Kelly 6:05 PM
NY Yankees - S. Greene
Detroit - K. Lobstein 6:05 PM
Cleveland - C. Carrasco
NY Mets - J. Niese 6:10 PM
Miami - B. Penny
Philadelphia - K. Kendrick 6:10 PM
Atlanta - M. Minor
Toronto - R. Dickey 6:10 PM
Tampa Bay - J. Hellickson
Milwaukee - Y. Gallardo 7:05 PM
Chicago Cubs - J. Arrieta
LA Angels - C. Wilson 7:10 PM
Houston - B. Peacock
Chicago WSox - H. Noesi 7:10 PM
Minnesota - T. Milone
Texas - D. Holland 7:10 PM
Kansas City - J. Guthrie
Pittsburgh - J. Locke 7:15 PM
St. Louis - A. Wainwright
San Francisco - Y. Petit 7:40 PM
Colorado - J. Lyles
Seattle - J. Paxton 9:05 PM
Oakland - S. Gray
Washington - D. Fister 9:10 PM
Los Angeles - C. Kershaw
Arizona - W. Miley 9:10 PM
San Diego - O. Despaigne
Green Bay 9/4/14 7:30 PM
Seattle
Buffalo 9/7/14 12:00 PM
Chicago
New Orleans 9/7/14 12:00 PM
Atlanta
Minnesota 9/7/14 12:00 PM
St. Louis
Cleveland 9/7/14 12:00 PM
Pittsburgh
Jacksonville 9/7/14 12:00 PM
Philadelphia
Oakland 9/7/14 12:00 PM
NY Jets
Cincinnati 9/7/14 12:00 PM
Baltimore
Washington 9/7/14 12:00 PM
Houston
Tennessee 9/7/14 12:00 PM
Kansas City
New England 9/7/14 12:00 PM
Miami
Carolina 9/7/14 3:25 PM
Tampa Bay
San Francisco 9/7/14 3:25 PM
Dallas
Indianapolis 9/7/14 7:30 PM
Denver
NY Giants 9/8/14 6:10 PM
Detroit
San Diego 9/8/14 9:20 PM
Arizona
Miami-Florida 13 FINAL
(25) Louisville 31
Arizona 9/4/14 7:00 PM
TX-San Antonio
Pittsburgh 9/5/14 6:00 PM
Boston College
Washington St 9/5/14 9:30 PM
Nevada
SMU 9/6/14 11:00 AM
North Texas
Fla Atlantic 9/6/14 11:00 AM
(2) Alabama
Buffalo 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Army
(24) Missouri 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Toledo
Arkansas State 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Tennessee
(7) McNeese State 9/6/14 11:00 AM
(19) Nebraska
Central Mich 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Purdue
Akron 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Penn State
Western Ill 9/6/14 11:00 AM
(18) Wisconsin
(20) Kansas State 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Iowa State
(4) Oklahoma 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Tulsa
Western Ky 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Illinois
SC State 9/6/14 11:30 AM
(23) Clemson
Navy 9/6/14 12:00 PM
Temple
UAB 9/6/14 1:00 PM
Miss State
South Alabama 9/6/14 1:00 PM
Kent State
New Mexico St 9/6/14 1:00 PM
Georgia State
Colorado 9/6/14 2:00 PM
Massachusetts
Fresno State 9/6/14 2:00 PM
Utah
(2) Eastern Wash 9/6/14 2:00 PM
Washington
(14) USC 9/6/14 2:30 PM
(13) Stanford
Ohio U 9/6/14 2:30 PM
Kentucky
Middle Tennessee 9/6/14 2:30 PM
Minnesota
Northern Ill 9/6/14 2:30 PM
Northwestern
Missouri State 9/6/14 2:30 PM
Oklahoma State
Ball State 9/6/14 2:30 PM
Iowa
Maryland 9/6/14 2:30 PM
So Florida
Eastern Mich 9/6/14 3:00 PM
Florida
Georgia Tech 9/6/14 3:00 PM
Tulane
(15) Ole Miss 9/6/14 3:30 PM
Vanderbilt
Old Dominion 9/6/14 5:00 PM
NC State
(7) Michigan State 9/6/14 5:30 PM
(3) Oregon
(17) Arizona State 9/6/14 6:00 PM
New Mexico
Louisiana Tech 9/6/14 6:00 PM
Louisiana
San Jose St 9/6/14 6:00 PM
(5) Auburn
East Carolina 9/6/14 6:00 PM
(21) So Carolina
Duke 9/6/14 6:00 PM
Troy
Idaho 9/6/14 6:00 PM
ULM
(15) Sam Houston St 9/6/14 6:30 PM
(12) LSU
Michigan 9/6/14 6:30 PM
(16) Notre Dame
Lamar 9/6/14 6:30 PM
(9) Texas A&M
Northwestern St 9/6/14 6:30 PM
(10) Baylor
BYU 9/6/14 6:30 PM
Texas
Citadel 9/6/14 6:30 PM
(1) Florida State
San Diego St 9/6/14 7:00 PM
(21) North Carolina
Virginia Tech 9/6/14 7:00 PM
(8) Ohio State
Memphis 9/6/14 9:00 PM
(11) UCLA
Colorado State 9/6/14 9:15 PM
Boise State
Air Force 9/6/14 9:15 PM
Wyoming
Oregon State 9/6/14 9:30 PM
Hawaii
Texas Tech 9/6/14 10:00 PM
Texas-El Paso
Brt Columbia 9/5/14 6:30 PM
Ottawa
Calgary 9/6/14 6:00 PM
Edmonton
Hamilton 9/7/14 12:00 PM
Montreal
Saskatchewan 9/7/14 3:00 PM
Winnipeg
Minnesota 9:00 PM
Phoenix
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

Date/Opponent Time W L Score
2014 season     
Aug 28 - vs. E. Illinois 6 pmX42-20
Sep 6 - vs. M. Tennessee St. 2:30 pm
Sep 13 - at TCU 3 pm
Sep 20 - vs. San Jose St. TBA
Sep 27 - at Michigan TBA
Oct 11 - vs. Northwestern TBA
Oct 18 - vs. Purdue 11 am
Oct 25 - at Illinois 11 am
Nov 8 - vs. Iowa TBA
Nov 15 - vs. Ohio State TBA
Nov 22 - at Nebraska TBA
Nov 29 - at Wisconsin TBA

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: Grade the Gophers in their season opener

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close