Category Archives: Wild Prospects

2014 Hockey City Classic Notes – Minnesota Gophers vs Ohio State Buckeyes – January 17th, 2014

The 2014 Hockey City Classic once again includes Minnesota Gopher Hockey but this time the outdoor college hockey event has the Minnesota Gophers on home ice or, at least, ice at their home. Of course, being outdoors, I’m not sure if there is a home ice advantage as both the Gophers and their opponent, the Ohio State Buckeyes, probably received the same amount of ice time on the outdoor ice at TCF Bank stadium. There should be more Gopher Hockey fans there though so hopefully that will give the Gophers some “home ice” advantage.

I heard earlier this week that this is the first time in 80 years (1922) that the Minnesota Gophers have had a hockey game at home in the fabulous outdoor weather of a Minnesota winter. Now, it seems there’s outdoor hockey games once a week during the season of Winter. The Winter Classic didn’t start it all but it certainly brought the idea of the outdoor hockey game back to the forefront and got people enthusiastic about outdoor hockey again. I just hope they haven’t overdone it with the Stadium Series but I guess we’ll find out soon enough.

So, heading into the Hockey City Classic, Gopher hockey is still ranked #1 with an overall record of  15-2-3 with losses at Notre Dame and vs Minnesota-Duluth. Their Big Ten record is 5-0-1 with a tie (shootout loss) to Michigan State back on December 6th.

Ohio State comes in with an overall record of 11-6-1 and a conference record of 1-2-1 but their losses have both been by one goal losing in overtime to Michigan 4-3 and losing in a shootout to Michigan State in a 1-1 game. So they look like a team that should not be overlooked.

Here’s your line charts:

Line Chart – Minnesota Golden Gophers

Left Wing – Center – Right Wing
Taylor Cammarata – 13 – Kyle Rau-7 – Hudson Fasching-24
Sam Warning-11 – Nate Condon-16 – Justin Kloos-25
Tom Serratore-14 – Travis Boyd-22 – Seth Ambroz-17
Connor Reilly-21 – Vinni Lettieri-19 – Christian Isackson-26
Left Defenseman – Right Defenseman
Brady Skjei-2 – Justin Holl-12
Mike Reilly-5 – Michael Brodzinski-20
Jake Bischoff-28 – Ben Marshall-10
Goalie
Adam Wilcox-32
Mike Shibrowski-1

Scratches: G-Ryan Coyne-31, D-Jake Parenteau-6, F-Ryan Reilly-9, F-AJ Michaelson-15, F-Christian Horn-18, F-Gabe Guertler-27
Injured:

Line Chart – Ohio State Buckeyes

Left Wing – Center – Right Wing
Anthony Greco-14 – Tanner Fritz-16 – Alex Szczechura-28
Ryan Dzingel-18 – Nick Oddo-15 – Nick Schilkey-37
Max McCormick-17 – Tyler Lundey-23 – Darik Angeli-10
Alex Lippincott-11 – Chad Niddery-19 – Matt Johnson-26
Left Defenseman – Right Defenseman
Curtis Gedig-8 – Josh Healey-47
Sam Jardine-21 – Craig Dalrymple-24
Justin Dasilva-25 – Drew Brevig-4
Goalie
Matt Tomkins-31
Christian Frey-30

Scratches/Injured: G-Logan Davis-1, G-Aaron Kahn-34, D-Clark Cristifoli-6, D-Al McLean-7, D-Blake Doerring-27, F-David Gust-9, F-Travis Statchuk-12

Alright, let’s DROP THE CLUTTERPUCK and get to the game!!!

1st Period

  • I really like those Gopher Hockey jerseys. They look “Classic!” I wonder if the Gophers will wear them again any time soon OR add them to their other options of jersey to wear at home games from now on.
  • The weather to start the game is at a temperature of 6 degrees with humidity at 60%, winds coming from the southwest at 5 miles per hour with a forecast of mostly clear and brisk wind gusts!
    • That sounds like outdoor hockey weather to me! Let’s do this, boys!
  • LET’S PLAY….HOCKEY!!!!
  • The starters are:
    • Gopher Hockey – #14 Tom Serratore at Left Wing, #22 Travis Boyd at Center, #17 Seth Ambroz at Right Wing, #2 Brady Skjei at Left Defense, #12 Justin Holl at Right Defense AND starting in goal, #32 Adam Wilcox!
    • Ohio State Buckeyes – #18 Ryan Dzingel at Left Wing, #15 Nick Oddo at Center, #37 Nick Schilkey at Right Wing, #47 Josh Healey at Left Defense, #8 Curtis Gedig at Right Defense and #31 Matt Tomkins starting in the cage.
      • Do you think the coaches struggle with who to start in these outdoor games or just do it like any other game?
      • It looks like both coaches went with the senior lineup to me, getting those guys something they can look back on as starters in the Hockey City Classic.
  • Travis Boyd wins the opening face-off back to Justin Holl who gets to the red line and dumps the puck in and we are underway!
  • Nice toe save by Mike Tomkins on a chance by Hudson Fasching at 10:05 of the 1st period!
  • PENALTY – Justin Kloos for Cross-Checking Max McCormick at 15:04 of the 1st period -  Justin Kloos takes a dumb penalty in the offensive zone by cross-checking Max McCormick instead of trying to get in a better position to defend and/or steal the puck.
  • PENALTY – Darek Angeli for Tripping Ben Marshall at 17:05 of the 1st period - As Ben Marshall clears the zone on the penalty kill, Darik Angeli tries to poke check the puck away from him and ends up tripping him and NOW, he’ll get some time alone in the penalty box to think about what he’s done!
  • BIG SAVE by Adam Wilcox on Ryan Dzingel at 18:40 of the 1st period - A bouncing puck gets through about 3 players as the Gophers try to enter the Buckeye zone and a clearing attempt gets through Michael Brodzinski giving Ryan Dzingel a breakaway on the PK. Coming in to Adam Wilcox’s right, Dzingel makes a few stick fakes and shoots low blocker but Wilcox is up to the task and keeps the game scoreless!
    • Tough to fault much on that play as a bouncing puck could go either way.
      • Should Michael Brodzinski or Ben Marshall get back a little more since Dzingel is playing so high near the blue line in between them?
        • I would say probably and especially on a loose puck. Brodzinski was on the strong side so the weak side player should get back in my opinion.
  • The first period ends with no goals being scored but both teams getting a few solid chances.
    • Probably takes a period to get used to the ice and the elements and the opponent since they haven’t faced each other since 2007!

2nd Period

  • Sam Warning gets a scoring chance on a great pass by Mike Reilly and he does a turnaround shot to his backhand. You don’t see that very often!
    • You see the turnaround shot to the forehand all the time because players love their snap or wrist shots.
      • I really think it shows a weakness of a bad backhand shot.
      • A turnaround shot to a forehand is rarely going to fool anyone and it gives the defense and goalie time to prepare for the shot but if you learn how to shoot a quick backhand shot and get something on it, it will change your game AND help you get more space to shoot on your forehand because they opponent has to look for either shot!
  • GOAL – Taylor Cammarata from Kyle Rau and Justin Holl at 4:20 of the 2nd period - A simple little pass up the right boards by Justin Holl gets Kyle Rau the puck coming in the right side of the Buckeye zone with Taylor Cammarata coming up the middle. Hudson Fasching actually goes for a change so it’s really just a 2-on-2 with no back pressure from Ohio State. Rau has some space so brings the puck to his forehand for a shot through Ohio State d-man Josh Healey but Healey gets his stick in front of the shot deflecting the puck through his legs where Taylor Cammarata just tries to deflect it towards the net. Those quick deflections makes the puck barely get through the legs of goalie Mike Tomkins and the puck trickles towards the goal line. Rau cuts behind the net, sees the puck lying there and quickly gets around the net to poke it in so the goal will probably change to Kyle Rau from Taylor Cammarata and Justin Holl! 1-0 GOPHERS!!!
    • Defenseman Curtis Gedig gave way too much space to Taylor Cammarata coming down the middle.
      • Hudson Fasching changed on the play so there’s no reason and no Gopher to cover in any other part of the zone.
      • Tanner Fritz didn’t apply any back pressure on the play either and that would’ve changed that play.
        • Players should be aware of what’s going on and when they can take advantage of situations offensively AND defensively.
          • Everybody on the ice and the bench can help with that by talking to each other and yelling when to go to the player with the puck and countless other things going on during the game.
    • Kyle Rau makes that play with his compete level! He sees the loose puck on the goal line and dives around the net lunging at it with his stick!

3rd Period

  • Rough start to the 3rd period as the Gophers are having some trouble getting out of their zone and making passes through the neutral zone.
  • PENALTY – Nick Schilkey for Tripping Same Warning at 2:18 of the 3rd period - Sam Warning gets to a loose puck in the Buckeye zone and Nick Schilkey tries to reach Warning’s stick with his stick coming down over the top but he misses and hit’s Warning’s feet tripping him and gets a free ticket to the penalty box!
  • PENALTIES – Coincidental Minors – Derek Angeli for Tripping Kyle Rau and Kyle Rau for Unsportsmanlike Conduct Embellishment at 6:07 of the 3rd period - Behind the Gopher net, Kyle Rau, Jake Bischoff, Derek Angeli & Max McCormick battle for a loose puck. The puck comes off the wall and Kyle Rau is the first to go to it but Derek Angeli hooks Rau by his left glove. Kyle Rau falls but apparently appears to the official that he tried to embellish being tripped to get the call.
    • I disagree with the call on Kyle Rau and here’s why. He’s getting hooked on the glove and my guess is that, from the way we see Kyle Rau battle, he not assuming the official is calling the hook (or trip since that’s what the official called) so he’s trying to battle out of it and once his hand comes loose, he loses his balance.
      • I’m sure people would see that as me being a biased Gopher fan. That’s not it at all. That’s how I see that play.
    • Many people get annoyed when an official will call a trip and a dive on the same play thinking it can’t be both. Their argument is, if the player was tripped then how can it be a dive/embellishment? Or if the player dove/embellished then how can it be a trip?
      • Why would you try to fool the official? As if you have some idea when they are going to or not going to call a penalty!
    • I like when the official calls a penalty but calls the wrong penalty. Like this case for instance. That should a hooking penalty because Derek Angeli hooked Kyle Rau. He didn’t trip him.
      • Should we be happy the official at least knew there was a penalty and not care that he got the call right?
        • “Hey, he knew something didn’t look right there so he just figured he’d call it a trip and be done with it.”
          • “#10 for breaking the rules! I don’t know what specific rule but it was one of them. It was an illegal play! Yeah, that’s it! 2 minutes for Illegal Play!”…”What’s the signal for that?”…”Uhhh….the shame on you sign!”
    • I will say this. I respect what linesman and officials do. It’s not an easy job and not something I want to do.
    • I do love how announcers or color analysts always say how they “understand trying to draw penalties” because I don’t understand it.
      • Battle through everything because you don’t know what the official will or won’t call and it’s stupid to give up a chance to score on the off-chance that the official will call the penalty!
      • Plus…You’re a hockey player, not an actor!!!
    • Sorry! I rambled a little there!
  • The Buckeyes pulled their goalie but never really got a real good chance to tie the game as this one ends at 1-0 in favor of the home team Minnesota Golden Gopher Hockey team!
  • Adam Wilcox gets the shutout stopping all 21 Ohio State Buckeye shots for his second shutout of the season!

Final Score
Minnesota Gophers 1, Ohio State Buckeyes 0

It was an interesting game. Outdoor games often are more spectacle than excitement as it takes the teams involved a while to figure out the ice and if the weather will cause the game to change. So teams play a more defensive style until they’ve gotten used to the ice and/or the opponent. They’re definitely still fun for the players and the fans but it’ll be interesting if the outdoor hockey phenomenon stays as big as it has been.

Well, same two teams tomorrow night at Mariucci for Hockey Day Minnesota 2014!

Links to the Box Score, Recaps from both schools and a Photo Gallery of the 2014 Hockey City Classic
Gopher Hockey Box Score from GopherSports.comHockey City Classic Box Score
Gopher Hockey Recap from GopherSports.comGophers Blank OSU in Hockey City Classic
Gopher Hockey Recap from OhioStateBuckeyes.comBuckeyes Drop 1-0 Game to No. 1 Minnesota in Hockey City Classic
Photo Gallery from GopherSports.comGopher Hockey vs Ohio State – 1/17/2014

In other B1G TEN College Hockey action tonight,
Home=”vs”, Away=”@”
Michigan State won vs Penn State 3-0

In other College Hockey action,
Home=”vs”, Away=”@”
Boston College won vs Boston University 6-4 – 2012 Minnesota Wild 4th round pick Adam Gilmour had a goal and an assist for Boston College in this game.
Notre Dame won vs Lake Superior 6-3 – 2011 Minnesota Wild 2nd-round pick Mario Lucia had a goal and an assist for Notre Dame in this game.

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Gopher Hockey Notes vs Minnesota State Mavericks – 11-15-2013

Gopher Hockey is still ranked #1 after splitting a road series against the Fighting Irish of Notre Dame AND the Son of Don! Notre Dame came out on Friday and took it to the Gophers physically, winning 4-1, but the Minnesota Gophers rebounded well on Saturday night getting a 5-4 win where all the goals were scored by freshmen, two for Hudson Fasching and one each for Justin Kloos, Taylor Cammarata and Jake Bischoff with the game winner! Mario “Son of Don” Lucia had two goals for the Irish.

Now the Minnesota Gopher hockey team gets back to a more familiar opponent as they take on former WCHA foe, the Minnesota State Mavericks. The Mavericks are still a part of the WCHA but they are probably anxious to play a #1 ranked team especially if it’s the Minnesota Gophers they’ve built a little rivalry against. The Gophers can’t look past or underestimate the Mavericks so hopefully they will come out with the same energy and aggressiveness that got them that #1 ranking.

Here’s your line charts for tonight’s game:

Line Chart – Minnesota Golden Gophers
Left Wing – Center – Right Wing
F-Sam Warning-11 – Kyle Rau-7 – Hudson Fasching-24
Nate Condon-16 – Justin Kloos-25 – Taylor Cammarata – 13
Connor Reilly-21 – Travis Boyd-22 – Vinni Lettieri-19
Tom Serratore-14 – Gabe Guertler-27 – Seth Ambroz-17
Left Defenseman – Right Defenseman
Brady Skjei-2 – Jake Bischoff-28
Mike Reilly-5 – Jake Parenteau-6
Ben Marshall-10 – Michael Brodzinski-20
Goalie
Adam Wilcox-32
Mike Shibrowski-1

Scratches: G-Ryan Coyne-31, D-Justin Holl-12, F-Ryan Reilly-9, FAJ Michaelson-15, F-Christian Horn-18, F-Christian Isackson-26

Line Chart – Minnesota State Mavericks

Left Wing – Center – Right Wing
Dylan Margonari-26 – Matt Leitner-18 – Bryce Gervais-9
Chase Grant-21 – Teddy Blueger-23 – Johnny McInnis-22
Brett Knowles-24 – Jean-Paul Lafontaine-12 – Max Gaede-8
Taylor Herndon-14 – Jordan Nelson-16 – Mat Knoll-10
Left Defenseman – Right Defenseman
Brett Stern-27 – Zach Palmquist-7
Jon Jutzi-28 – Casey Nelson-6
Nick Buchanon-4 – Sean Flanagan-11
Goalie
Cole Huggins-34

Alright, it’s time to DROP THE CLUTTERPUCK!!!

1st Period

  • About 3 and a half minutes in, Hudson Fasching throws a big hit at the right half wall of the Mavericks zone followed by a big hit by Michael Brodzinski in the left corner of the Gopher zone!
    • That got the Gophers going and a line rush gets the puck into the blue paint with Hudson Fasching and Kyle Rau battling for the loose puck and Fasching gets tripped up giving the Gophers their first power play of the game.
  • GOAL – Justin Kloos from Nate Condon & Brady Skjei at 10:31 of the 1st period - A face-off at the left face-off dot (or to Adam Wilcox’s right) is won by Travis Boyd back to the left corner. Jake Bischoff wins a battle for the puck, with a little help from Boyd, and passes it to Brady Skjei behind the net. Skjei comes around the net and quickly passes it to Nate Condon giving him the whole left side to skate up the boards. Condon brings the puck into the zone with speed and stops/slows down at the left half-wall. He was just trying to buy some time as the rest of his line came on the ice from the bench so he slowed down and then turned towards the boards and goes back towards the blue line and sees Justin Kloos coming up the middle of the zone. Condon puts a little backhand into the middle of the zone so Kloos can skate into it and take a quick shot that beats Cole Huggins to the right side for a 1-0 GOPHER LEAD!!!
    • The shot may have been tipped by Brett Knowles as he swiped at it with his stick to attempt to block the shot.
      • You don’t have to take a big swing to get your stick in the way of the shot. Just put your stick in front of the puck!
    • Max Gaede while on the forecheck goes in for the hit on Brady Skjei and doesn’t even try to get his stick on the puck.
      • He didn’t give up an odd man rush by doing that but he may have disrupted the play by getting his stick on the puck.
        • He then doesn’t pick up his man on the back check in Justin Kloos, who scored the goal.
          • He does that familiar reaching motion once he sees the puck going to Kloos. That’s usually followed by a head hanging in disappointment.
        • Pick up the man before he gets the puck! Read the play and react to what you read because if you react to what you see, it’s too late!
    • Minnesota State defensemen Brett Stern & Nick Buchanon gave Nate Condon way too much space, especially since he was all alone with no help from any Gopher players in the offensive zone.
      • Someone has to go to the puck when you outnumber the offense!
      • They gave too much of a gap too. Part of that is because of Nate Condon’s speed but it’s 1 against 3! You should be able to get the puck from him!
      • Brett Stern also bites on Condon’s move to buy time!
        • This is why you take the body instead of the puck! You should be able to get a piece of a player that’s carrying the puck! It’s also a lot easier than trying to get a piece of the puck.
        • Separate the man for the puck or the puck from the man…OR BOTH!!! Make a Choice!!!
      • Nate Condon did a good job buying time and showed good vision to find Kloos for a shot on net!
      • Justin Kloos does a good job driving to the net to get a chance to score.
        • AND a good job to shoot the puck knowing that was his only play there.
      • Now half of the Gophers goals have been scored by freshmen! That’s 18 of 36 if you’re keeping track at home (or on your computer where you are reading this!)

“We were merely freshmen!”

I loved this song when it came out in 1996! I may have just aged myself but so what!

  • GOAL – Mike Reilly from Nate Condon and Justin Kloos at 18:33 of the 1st period – Justin Kloos wins a puck battle along the right wall in the Gopher zone, breaks out of the zone and flips the puck into space over the head of Nate Condon. Condon dives for it, trying to get a pass over to Taylor Cammarata, but he didn’t get enough of it and it’s played into the right corner by Sean Flanagan. Max Gaede, just off the bench from a line change, gets to the puck in the corner after Condon but wins the puck and heads up the boards. He loses control of the puck and then panics and tries to just get the puck out of the zone but fails, turning the puck over on the blue line for Justin Kloos to keep the puck in the zone. Kloos just turns and throws it at the net but it hits the Maverick defenseman so Nate Condon can reach the puck as he goes for a line change. Condon sees Mike Reilly coming and just let’s him have it for a quick shot that beats Cole Huggins to his left. Taylor Cammarata went to the net and screened the goaltender on the goal. GOPHERS LEAD 2-0!!!
    • Max Gaede isn’t having a great night so far! He’s a minus 2 so far and he probably could’ve prevented both goals from happening had he finished on the play!
      • He needs to get the puck out of the zone on that play and he had time to just skate it out as Kloos was giving him space to do just that.
        • But he panicked and didn’t execute the chip off the boards well!
      • The Mavericks have to get in front of those shots too!

2nd Period

  • Mike Guentzel told Marney Gellner that he wanted the Gophers to get the puck to the paint and get more shots and the Gophers have been doing just that in the first 5 minutes of the 2nd period.
  • Taylor Cammarata just got a semi-breakaway and did something I’ve been curious to see would work or not. He stopped to get himself some time and space and then passed it off to a teammate for a shot on goal.
    • It worked beautifully because the defender was chasing him and the last thing they think you’re going to do is stop so I wonder when I’ll see that again.
  • PENALTY – Teddy Blueger for Tripping Justin Kloos at 8:01 of the 2nd period - The above play continued and as Justin Kloos tried to go to the front of the net from behind the net, he was tripped by Teddy Blueger!
    • That means we get a Gopher Power Play!!!
  • GOAL (POWER PLAY) – Connor Reilly from Sam Warning & Mike Reilly at 8:40 of the 2nd period - A Connor Reilly one-timer misses the net and wraps around the left boards back to Mike Reilly. Bryce Gervais over pursues Mike Reilly and lets the pass get through him to Sam Warning coming off the left half-wall creating a 4-on-3. Matt Leitner is too much in the middle of the ice to cover Connor Reilly at the right face-off circle and Casey Nelson may have screened his goaltender as Reilly’s one-timer goes in the right part of the net for a 3-0 GOPHER LEAD!!!
    • Bryce Gervais saw an opportunity to be aggressive and maybe get to Mike Reilly as he tries to handle a bouncing puck but he needs to go in with more of a defensive play in mind and just get in front of Mike Reilly and the puck.
    • Matt Leitner was too busy watching the puck than keeping track of where Connor Reilly was on the ice.
      • Casey Nelson was doing the same thing as he tried to move over to block the one-timer but screens his goaltender instead.
        • Would Cole Huggins have been able to make the save if he wasn’t screened? We’ll never know but as a defenseman, you have to be aware of when you’re taking away the eyes of your goaltender!
  • Teddy Blueger is hurt when Seth Ambroz hits him with a body check after he clears the zone.
    • The hit was maybe a tad late and maybe a little from behind but Blueger wasn’t prepared to take a hit. He was watching the puck clear the zone on the penalty kill.
    • You have to be aware of who’s on the ice and who’s coming whenever you’re on the ice. You should just assume someone’s coming to hit you at all times and have the proverbial “head on a swivel!”
  • Jordan Nelson throws an elbow into the head of Ben Marshall in the offensive zone.
    • He may not have meant to throw the elbow but players love throwing the chicken wing by following through high with the elbow.
    • Keep your arms down when you make a hit or push through the chest of the player and not up into the head area!

3rd Period

  • A puck just hit the official and gave Minnesota State a scoring chance.
    • I wonder if any league has ever thought a good way to get rid of that kind of thing changing a game might be to just blow the whistle when it happens?
    • Would both teams be OK with that? I would think they would.
    • Or maybe it could be left up to the discretion of the official to blow the whistle or not?
      • Although I’m not really a fan of making the official wonder if he should blow the whistle or not. Officials trying to think is usually a bad thing if you ask me.
  • Jordan Nelson just got another elbowing penalty. This time it’s on Kyle Rau! I’d keep my head up if I was him. Gophers may be coming or at least they all know what number he is.
  • GOAL – Zach Palmquist from Jean-Paul LaFontaine & Max Gaede at 12:48 of the 3rd period - A turnover in the left corner gets Jean-Paul LaFontaine the puck behind the goal line to Adam Wilcox’ right and he centers the puck out to Zach Palmquist for a one-timer that goes over a sprawling Adam Wilcox and the Mavericks make it 3-1!!!
    • The Gophers had too many players below the goal line on that play.
    • Mike Reilly goes below the goal line when Ben Marshall gets the puck but Marshall lost control of it and that’s when LaFontaine created a chance by going to the net.
    • Jean-Paul LaFontaine made a great play as he was being tripped by diving and getting his stick on the puck to push it out to Zach Palmquist for the one-time shot.
    • That’s one of those transition mistakes as Mike Reilly thought Marshall had the puck so he’s going on offense and is in good position for offense but then, all of a sudden, it’s turned over and he’s out of position from a defensive standpoint.
      • Not as big a problem with a  3-0 lead but you still don’t want to give up point blank shots in front of your own net.
  • GOAL (EMPTY NET) – Seth Ambroz – Unassisted at 19:33 of the 3rd period - Seth Ambroz picked off a breakout pass in the Maverick zone, corralled the puck and shot it into the empty net making it 4-1!

Final Score
Minnesota Golden Gophers 4, Minnesota State Mavericks 1

The Gophers got out to a 3-goal lead and then kind of took their foot off the gas pedal and almost let the Mavericks back into the game. Adam Wilcox had to make some great saves late in the third period to keep this game from becoming a big learning lesson for the Gophers. Now it’s just some film study for the boys to clean up some of the little stuff at the end of games.

Gopher Hockey Recap from GopherSports.comGophers Take Down Mavericks, 4-1
Gopher Hockey Box Score from GopherSports.comMinnesota-Minnesota State Box Score
Gopher Hockey Recap from MSUMavericks.com - Minnesota State Falls at #1 Minnesota Friday, 4-1

In other B1G TEN College Hockey action tonight,
Home=”vs”, Away=”@”
Wisconsin lost @ Miami 2-0,
Ohio State won vs Canisius 3-0,
Penn State lost vs UMass-Lowell 3-2,
and
Michigan lost @ Nebraska-Omaha 3-2

In other College Hockey action,
Home=”vs”, Away=”@”
Notre Dame won vs Merrimack 4-0 – Mario Lucia scored the 3rd goal of the game and now has 5 goals and 2 assists in 11 games this season.
North Dakota won vs Minnesota-Duluth 4-2,
Maine won vs Boston University 7-0,
Denver won vs Western Michigan 5-3
and
St. Cloud State won vs Alabama-Huntsville 10-0

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Gopher Hockey Notes vs Boston College Eagles – 10-25-2013

Gopher Hockey is ranked #1 four games into the season and have to face the #5 ranked Boston College Eagles, a team that beat Wisconsin 9-2  in their first 3 games. Also, the Gophers ran over a Boston College team last season beating them 8 to 1. You can bank on Jerry York having his players ready for this game.

There’s a couple Minnesota boys on the BC roster and one with ties to Minnesota. Ian McCoshen, a freshman defenseman from Faribault, played with Shattuck St. Mary’s in his hometown before spending 3 seasons in the USHL with the Waterloo Blackhawks. In 2010-2011, as a 15-year-old, he went to the highest tier of Junior Hockey. In those three seasons, he went from 6 points (all assists) and a minus 9 in 42 games his first year to 20 points (8 goals, 12 assists) and a plus 4 in 55 games his second year to putting up 44 points (11 goals, 33 assists) and a whopping plus 35 in 53 games his third season. I’d say he’s ready to take his game to division I as an 18-year-old and probably why he’s on the top pair and chosen early in the 2nd round of the 2013 NHL Draft by the Florida Panthers.

Boston College also has Michael Sit, an Edina native and a junior playing as a forward, centering the 4th line. Being a 4th liner, he hasn’t lit up the stat sheet so far but you don’t just look at stats with those 3rd & 4th lines because a lot of what they do is just plain hard work and getting in on the forecheck and shutting down the other team’s top lines. As a junior though, Michael Sit scored his first collegiate in the most recent game against Wisconsin. Both Sit and McCoshen played with current freshman Gopher Hockey players Justin Kloos and Taylor Cammarata with Waterloo the last two seasons, Kloos sparingly for all 3 and Cammarata for basically all of the last two seasons.

The final player with ties to Minnesota would be 2012 4th round pick (98th overall) of the Minnesota Wild, freshman Adam Gilmour. He’s a big kid at 6’3” and 194 pounds and was picked out the Massachusetts high school ranks and last season, he played for the Muskegon Lumberjacks of the USHL and had 47 points (19 goals, 28 assists) and was a plus 17 in 64 games. He’s playing on a line with Johnny Gaudreau and Bill Arnold so he should put up some points playing with those two! Always nice to be able to see the future of the Minnesota Wild and see what they have coming down the line.

Here’s your line charts:

Line Chart – Minnesota Golden Gophers

Left Wing – Center – Right Wing
F-Sam Warning-11 – Kyle Rau-7 – Hudson Fasching-24
Nate Condon-16 – Justin Kloos-25 – Taylor Cammarata – 13
Connor Reilly-21 – Travis Boyd-22 – Vinni Lettieri-19
Tom Serratore-14 – AJ Michaelson-15 – Seth Ambroz-17
Left Defenseman – Right Defenseman
Brady Skjei-2 – Justin Holl-12
Mike Reilly-5 – Jake Parenteau-6
Ben Marshall-10 – Michael Brodzinski-20
Goalie
Adam Wilcox-32
Mike Shibrowski-1

Scratches: G-Ryan Coyne-31, D-Jake Bischoff-28, F-Ryan Reilly-9, F-Christian Horn-18, F-Christian Isackson-26, F-Gabe Guertler-27
Injured:

Line Chart – Boston College Eagles

Left Wing – Center – Right Wing
Ryan Fitzgerald-19 – Kevin Hayes-12 – Austin Cangelosi-26
Johnny Gaudreau-13 – Bill Arnold-24 – Adam Gilmour-14
Quinn Smith-27 – Patrick Brown-23 – Chris Calnan-11
Destry Straight-17 – Michael Sit-18 – Brendan Silk-9
Left Defenseman – Right Defenseman
Ian McCoshen-3 – Michael Matheson-5
Isaac MacLeod-7 – Danny Linell-10
Scott Savage-28 – Steve Santini-6
Goalie
Thatcher Demko-30

Scratches/Injured: G-Brian Billett-1, G-Brad Barone-29, D-Teddy Doherty-4, D-Travis Jeke-8, F-Cam Spiro-15, F-Peter McMullen-20, F-Matthew Gaudreau-21, F-Evan Richardson-22

This is one of those match-ups you kind of drool over with two top-5 ranked schools known for being Division I contenders every season. It should be a classic.

Alright, it’s time to DROP THE CLUTTERPUCK!!!

1st Period

  • GOAL – Hudson Fasching from Kyle Rau at the :30 of the 1st period - All it takes is 30 seconds for the Gophers to get on the board! WOW!!! A turnover (but not a bad one) let’s Brady Skjei pass to Hudson Fasching get the puck coming out of his own zone at the middle of the blue line and pass it up to Kyle Rau, who’s curling back from the forecheck, and Rau takes it in of BC defenseman, Ian McCoshen. Rau gets past the blue line and rips a snap shot in on Thatcher Demko, then gets to the rebound before McCoshen and, even though he misses it, the BC defenseman had to account for him and try to body him up, leaving the rebound for the oncoming Hudson Fasching to easily shoot the puck into the empty net and the GOPHERS LEAD 1-0!!!
    • On the replay you see that Boston College actually had two defenseman and a back checking forward to cover both Rau & Fasching so they should’ve been able to prevent that goal.
    • This is why you love a player like Kyle Rau. He has that off the charts compete level to get to the net and make something happen.
    • The problem that allowed the goal was Johnny Gaudreau coasting and watching while Hudson Fasching gets to the loose puck and scores the first goal!
      • As a back checking forward, you can’t just be within reach of the offensive player. You have to be even with him and have a stick on his stick preventing him from getting to the puck.
      • You also can’t assume it’s a harmless play. Get back EVERY TIME!!!
      • That is the beauty of video today, folks.
        • They talk of Johnny Gaudreau being the best player in college hockey and it’s all right there on video showing him making a big mistake.
      • Preventing a goal counts the same as scoring a goal! It’s now 1-0 and if the goal is prevented, that would be the same as making it 1-1!!! PLAY SOME DEFENSE!!!
  • GOAL (POWER PLAY) – Travis Boyd from Kyle Rau and Sam Warning at 4:30 of the 1st period - Sam Warning, on the right half-wall, passes the puck down to Kyle Rau at the right of the net on the goal line below the face-off dot and Rau quickly makes a move towards the net, sees the defenseman go down trying to poke check the puck away, moves the puck away from the poke check, sees Travis Boyd moving in for the backdoor pass and gets it to him for a one-timer into the upper part of the net for a 2-0 GOPHER Lead!!!
    • That’s just a great play by Kyle Rau to avoid the poke check and see Boyd moving in for the backdoor pass. He’s putting his stamp on this game early and often so far!!!
      • Maybe that’s why he is wearing The C!!! Captain, My Captain!!!
    • Do you fault the defenseman for being aggressive there? I don’t know. It’s kind of hard to fault him on that play because the aggressive PK was working for BC . Sure, he could’ve played it a little differently but I wouldn’t blame him for that goal.
      • Rau has a bad angle so I say just leave him there and take away the backdoor pass but I can see where you’d think he has a bad angle so force him, thinking his choices are limited.
      • That’s why it’s such a great play by Rau.
  • PENALTY – Patrick Brown for Interference with Jake Parenteau at 4:55 of the 1st period - Boston College gets a scoring chance and Patrick Brown coming in to the net, pushes Parenteau, knocking him down and he runs into his own net hitting his head on the post.
    • It doesn’t look like he hit the net that hard but he’s going off the ice to get looked at by the trainers.
  • PENALTY – Ben Marshall for Cross-Checking Michael Sit at 7:31 of the 1st period - Ben Marshall is his own zone in the corner and he hits Michael Sit a little from behind and the official calls him for cross-checking. It wasn’t cross-checking as Marshall only had one hand on his stick. It’s a questionable call but I can see it going either way.
  • GOAL (POWER PLAY) – Johnny Gaudreau from Michael Matheson at 8:31 of the 1st period - Johnny Gaudreau is skating the puck up the left side of the ice on the power play and sees Michael Matheson trailing the play at the right point. He passes him the puck and Matheson one-times it but misses the net wide to the right. The puck hits the boards behind the net and bounces right to Johnny Gaudreau, who kept skating in from the left side, and is now below the goal line on the left side of the net. He gets the puck off the back boards and shoots for the not and the puck ends up going off of Adam Wilcox’ skate into the net for a 1-2 Gopher Lead!!!
      • Great awareness by Gaudreau to get the puck and immediately aim for the net or for someone near the net to deflect it in.
        • I’m not sure if he tried to aim for Wilcox’ skate or just threw it in front of the net looking for a good bounce.
        • Was that a planned play? I’m not sure. It may have just been a shot that went wide and happened to bounce right to Gaudreau. We’ll probably never know.
  • GOAL – Michael Sit from Destry Straight and Scott Savage at 9:42 of the 1st period – WOW!!! THREE GOALS in a span of 71 seconds! - The ensuing face-off is won by Boston College back to the left D. A pass goes D-to-D and Seth Ambroz is standing at the red line. He lets Destry Straight go and focuses on Scott Savage coming at him but with no speed Savage easily passes it through him up to Straight. AJ Michaelson is covering Michael Sit but is trailing him as he enters the offensive zone. Straight passes the puck up to Sit giving him a mini-breakaway on Adam Wilcox and he shoots it 5-hole for a 3-2 EAGLES LEAD!!!
    • I’m not a goalie coach but one thing that drives me crazy is how goalies lift their stick opening up the 5-hole. If Adam Wilcox has his stick on the ice, he makes a save. He probably creates a rebound but he has defense to clear that rebound or so it appears.
    • AJ Michaelson does the familiar reaching instead of skating to defend the pass. SKATE!!! MOVE YOUR FEET!!!
    • Michael Brodzinski played too far inside and not enough gap giving Destry Straight a step on him and a lane to get the pass behind him to Michael Sit!
    • It’d be interesting to hear what the bench was yelling on these goals.
      • Were they trying to get Brodzinski to back up? Were they telling Ambroz to go to the puck? Were they telling Michaelson to stay with his man?
      • In the last Boston College game, and Michael Sit’s 80th collegiate game, he scored his first collegiate goal. He didn’t wait that long to tickle the twine again and NOW, he has scored two goals in 11 seconds! Have a game, Michael Sit! WOW!!! SIT UP!!!
      • Five goals in the first 10 minutes of the game! This could get crazy!!!
  • PENALTY – Sam Warning for Interference on Adam Gilmour at 13:18 of the 1st period - Off a face-off in the BC zone, Sam Warning gets in the way of Adam Gilmour, keeping him from getting to the puck and the official calls him for interference.
  • Nate Condon knows how to use his speed! Off a turnover near the Gopher blue line, Condon picks up the puck and only has one defenseman between him and the goalie so he chips the puck by the defenseman and uses his speed to skate past him and get a shot on goal!
  • As the penalty expires, Travis Boyd gets the puck to Sam Warning just behind the defense. He can’t catch the pass on his backhand and his shot is deflected wide left by Steve Santini. Warning picks up the puck again as he goes around the back of the net. As he gets to the right half-wall, he sees Ben Marshall coming up the center of the zone and gets him the puck for a big slapper that hits the post hard for a loud PING and a big reaction from the crowd! Metallurgy!!! So close!!!
    • Man, I hope Sam Warning can stay healthy all season! He makes things happen out there! Great Vision with and without the puck!
  • Adam Wilcox makes a great save moving to his left to stop a one-timer at the 18:00 mark of the 1st period!
  • GOAL – Michael Sit from Scott Savage and Isaac MacLeod at 9:31 of the 1st period - On a rush up ice, Taylor Cammarata has the puck and enters the Eagles zone on the right side. Justin Holl joins the rush trailing Cammarata, who makes a drop pass to him. Holl catches the pass and takes a look for a shot but that just gives the back checking forward time to get to him and get his stick on the puck and deflect it to the right corner where Scott Savage picks it up and goes up the boards. Savage sees Michael Sit open going up center ice and passes to him. Brendan Silk skates hard to make it a 2-on-1 forcing Ben Marshall to try to take away the pass and leaving Sit to shoot on Adam Wilcox. Sit shoots high blocker and the shot hits Adam Wilcox’ blocker or his stick and goes into the net and the game is TIED AT 2!!!
    • There’s a few things that make this play bad for the Gophers:
      • The Drop Pass!!!
        • I’ve never been a big fan of the drop pass!
        • Most of the time it’s a blind pass because  you don’t see it reach it’s intended target or, at least, the player who passed it doesn’t see the pass completed because they are going to the net or being hit or something.
        • It gives the goalie and the rest of the defense time to locate the puck and prepare for the shot. Consider it like a fastball a hitter can’t catch up to and the pitcher throwing a change-up giving the hitter a chance to hit the ball. Don’t help out the opponent by slowing down the play.
        • It rarely works.
      • Taylor Cammarata has speed so use that speed to get to the net and make a play, take a shot to score or a shot to create a rebound or just to create space to can see your options.
      • Justin Kloos should be driving the net forcing the weak side defenseman to account for him.
      • Hard to use the trailer if you don’t have an odd-man rush in your favor.
      • It was a 3-on-3 rush so really nobody was open meaning you have to take the play to the net and make something happen.
      • Since Justin Holl joined the rush, someone has to cover his defensive position.
      • I believe Nate Condon made the pass across the ice to Cammarata then changed and Tom Serratore came on the ice.
        • Serratore makes a hit on Scott Savage but doesn’t get his stick down to effect the breakout pass and his hit gives up the 2-on-1 and changes the whole play.
          • If he focuses on the play instead of making a hit, it may not end up in a 2-on-1 and then Michael Sit doesn’t get a free shot on net.
      • Ben Marshall played it ok but he should’ve forced Sit to do something earlier because it was an uneven 2-on-1 meaning Silk was behind Sit instead of even with him and he had to skate hard to create the 2-on-1.
        • He could’ve closed the gap between himself and Michael Sit more.
      • Of course, this is all easy to say after the play but that’s what coaching is, learning from mistakes and getting better from them or adjusting how you play a certain situation.

2nd Period

  • GREAT SAVE – Adam Wilcox on Bill Arnold 3o seconds into the 2nd period! - A turnover just over the Gophers blue line by Hudson Fasching results in an odd-man rush for BC with Johnny Gaudreau skating the puck up the left side with Bill Arnold skating up the middle. Gaudreau gets Arnold the puck for a 1-on-1 with Wilcox. He makes a move to his forehand but Wilcox gets over and makes a save with his outstretched right pad to keep the game within a goal for the Gophers.
  • PENALTY – Mike Reilly for Boarding on Quinn Smith at 11:27 of the 2nd period - Tough call for Mike Reilly as it appears he hit Quinn Smith more from the side than behind but it caused Smith to go into the boards hard and awkwardly and it “looked and sounded” like a penalty. I put that in quotes not because anyone said that but to show that it may have influenced a call rather than a no-call.
    • The official in the zone didn’t call it though which always intrigues me. The official in the neutral zone made the call.
    • I would say the only way to avoid making this hit is to skate and get even or ahead of the offensive player so you can change the angle of the hit and not hit him straight into the boards.
    • There’s not really a need to make that hit because Smith really has no place to go with the puck and now the Gophers are on the PK!
  • GOAL – Taylor Cammarata from Justin Kloos at 15:33 – Justin Kloos gets a loose puck in the Gopher zone at the right half-wall and uses his speed to pick it up and break out of the zone up the middle of the ice and create a 2-on-2 with Taylor Cammarata. BC defensman Steve Santini goes to Kloos but Kloos smartly keeps the puck away from him going to his right towards Cammarata. He ends up giving Cammarata the puck and goes to the net. Cammarata uses Ian McCoshen as a screen keeping Thatcher Demko from seeing the puck until it’s too late and he only gets a piece of it with his blocker and we are TIED AT 3!!!
    • That’s Taylor Cammarata’s first collegiate goal and, hopefully, the first of many!!! We want to see #ALottaCammarata!!!
    • So many times you see players try to go through a defenseman when on a rush. Keep the puck away from the defense.
    • Taylor Cammarata shoots a wrist shot not a snap shot. Usually a wrist shot will be more accurate than a snap shot. Snap shots are better for the quick release shot.
    • Steve Santini goes to Justin Kloos on the play but Ian McCoshen wasn’t on the same page as he didn’t close the gap on Cammarata allowing him to get the puck with time and space to shoot.
    • Ian McCoshen needs to get down and block that shot instead of blocking the view of his goaltender!
      • If you’re going to screen your goaltender, at least help him out by getting down to take away the low shot.
      • Another reason why he needs to gap up or shorten the gap between himself and the shooter Cammarata.

3rd Period

  • We miss 40 seconds at the beginning of the 3rd period for some reason. Maybe BTN is getting tips from FSN? Geez!
    • “Hey, is this supposed to be plugged in?”
    • “How long should we keep playing commercials?”
  • FSN and/or BTN (or anyone broadcasting college hockey really) should really have a camera on Mike Reilly at all times when he’s on the ice. It’d be pretty sweet to watch his shifts isolated and see what he does on a given shift. Obviously when he scores but to see when he joins an offensive rush or how he uses his speed and vision to effect the game and how he plays with and without the puck!!!
    • They could select a player from each team for each game to watch OR someone should create an app that does that for every player on the ice at all times, be it by position or jersey number or whatever!
    • The technology has to be there to do this! Right?
      • Think of how this could teach the game to the players from the teams playing and the aspiring players watching the game!
      • What a teaching tool that could be!!!
  • With 20 seconds left in the 3rd period, Justin Holl sends a long pass from the left half-wall of his own zone to Sam Warning going up the middle of the BC blue line and Warning makes a move around Danny Linell to get a shot off while falling down. No goal but what a pass and what a move by Warning! #Warning #SamIsOnTheIce

OVERTIME

  • What’s the #1 rule in Overtime? SHOOT THE PUCK!!! From Anywhere! At Anytime!!! Anything can happen in OT!!!
  • With 2:06 left in Overtime, Johnny Gaudreau has the puck on a BC rush but it’s 3-on-4 and he makes a bad decision to pass the puck to the middle to Bill Arnold. The play is broken up and Kyle Rau picks up the loose puck and sees Taylor Cammarata behind the BC Defense hitting him for a breakaway. Cammarata makes a move to his backhand and tries to softly send it through Thatcher Demko’s 5-hole. Demko makes the save with his goalie stick but the puck bounces up into the air going over Demko and heading into the net but Ian McCoshen saves the day and the game by catching and throwing the puck back out at the same time.
    This causes a 2-on-1 the other way as play goes on. That is broken up by Brady Skjei.

    • WOW!!! What a crazy, awesome sequence that was!!!
    • Watching the replay, you wonder why the officials didn’t whistle down the play because of a hand pass but it doesn’t matter since the play was blown dead later.
    • It gave up a 2-on-1 and if Boston College scores on that, would it have been reviewed and reversed? THAT would’ve been interesting!
    • We get overtime with the Gophers having some momentum late in the 3rd period getting several scoring chances in the final couple minutes!
    • Would McCoshen have been able to stop that goal if he had his stick in his hands?
    • Possibly the craziest part of that play is Ian McCoshen trying to catch Cammarata, hitting him with his stick and losing his stick just before the puck bounces up in the air.

SHOOTOUT (Just for fun!)

  • The game officially ends in a tie as the shootout doesn’t count as part if the B1G -Hockey East Challenge!
  • Johnny Gaudreau on Adam Wilcox – NO GOAL!
  • Taylor Cammarata on Thatcher Demko – NO GOAL!
  • Bill Arnold on Adam Wilcox – GOAL! Nice move barely getting it past Wilcox! He actually lost control of the puck on the last move but the puck hit his stick then hits Wilcox’ skate and goes in.
  • Sam Warning on Thatcher Demko – NO GOAL!
  • Kevin Hayes on Adam Wilcox – NO GOAL! Keep the game alive for the Gophers!
  • Kyle Rau on Thatcher Demko – GOAL! Going 5-hole and giving the Gophers another chance to win!
  • Adam Gilmour on Adam Wilcox – NO GOAL!
  • Nate Condon on Thatcher Demko – NO GOAL!
  • Patrick Brown on Adam Wilcox – GOAL!!! Nice Move to quick snap shot to the upper right corner!
  • Hudson Fasching on Thatcher Demko – NO GOAL!!! BC Wins!

Final Score
Minnesota Gophers 3, Boston College Eagles 3

A game that had 5 goals in the first 10 minutes ends up in a 3-3 tie! You wouldn’t have guessed that but there were still plenty of chances. The Gophers almost won it in overtime save for a glove save from Faribault, Minnesota native Ian McCoshen! We’ll see what happens on Sunday afternoon as we get the rematch in this great match-up!

Gopher Hockey Recap from GopherSports.comNo. 1 Gophers, No. 5 Eagles Play to 3-3 Tie
Gopher Hockey Box Score from GopherSports.comMinnesota – Boston College Stats (Downloadable PDF)
Gopher Hockey Recap from BCEagles.comNo. 5 BC skates to 3-3 draw at No. 1 Minnesota

In other B1G TEN College Hockey action tonight,
Home=”vs”, Away=”@”

In other College Hockey action,
Home=”vs”, Away=”@”

Bring The CLUTTER in the comments, on Google+ on Twitter and on Facebook.

You’ve Been ClutterPUCKED!!!

Gopher Hockey Final Five Recap vs Colorado College Tigers – 3-22-2013

Gopher hockey begins their last WCHA Final Five and matches up against a Colorado College Tigers team that seems to have found the glass slipper since the playoffs started. They upset Denver in the first round taking the series to a decisive 3rd game and winning 4-3. Then they upset a North Dakota team that always plays their best hockey at this time of the season winning 4-3 in overtime! Can they keep it going tonight against a Gopher hockey team that struggled a bit to beat Bemidji State? Will the Gophers come out hard and get some Xcel Energy from the crowd? Will the Tigers be able to stay in the game like they did against UND? Tigers goalie Joe Howe will have to keep up his great play of late to steal another one to get to the championship game and keep the Tigers NCAA tournament hopes alive!

Previous Match-ups in the 2012-13 season:

Line Chart – Minnesota Golden Gophers

Left Wing – Center – Right Wing
Kyle Rau-7 – Nick Bjugstad-27 – Christian Isackson-26
Sam Warning-11 – Erik Haula-19 – Zach Budish-24
AJ Michaelson-15 – Nate Condon-16 – Justin Holl-12
Tom Serratore-14 – Travis Boyd-22 – Seth Ambroz-17
Left Defenseman – Right Defenseman
Jake Parenteau-6 – Nate Schmidt-29
Seth Helgeson-4 – Ben Marshall-10
Mike Reilly-5 – Mark Alt-20
Goalie
Adam Wilcox-32
Mike Shibrowski-1

Scratches: G-Matt LaPrade-30, D-Brady Skjei-2, F-Ryan Reilly-9, F-Christian Horn-18, F-Jared Larson-23
Injured: F-Connor Reilly-21, G-Ryan Coyne-31

Line Chart – Colorado College Tigers

Left Wing – Center – Right Wing
Alexander Krushelnyski-16 – Rylan Schwartz-13 – Charlie Taft-17
Archie Skalbeck-12 – Scott Winkler-25 – William Rapuzzi-27
Hunter Fejes-11 – F-Jordan Digiando – Andrew Hamburg-15
Peter Maric-22 – Jeff Collett-21 – Jared Hanson-24
Left Defenseman – Right Defenseman
Peter Stoykewych-6 – Mike Boivin-28
Aaron Harstad-5 – Eamonn McDermott-7
Ian Young-20 – Joe Marciano-4
Goalie
Joe Howe-31
Josh Thorimbert-39

Scratches/Injured: G-Courtney Lockwood-29, D-Russell Finch-2, D-Micheal King-3, F-Scott Wamsganz, F-Cody Bradley-10, F-Michael Morin-19

Some changes to the lineups for the Gophers and the Tigers since the last time these teams played each other. Sam Warning gets back in the lineup and Brady Skjei gets scratched as The Don goes with Jake Parenteau with Nate Schmidt in the #1 defensive pairing. That also moves Nate Condon back to centering the 3rd line between AJ Michaelson & Justin Holl making the 4th line Travis Boyd centering Tom Serratore & Seth Ambroz.

The Tigers have moved Alexander Krushelnyski and Charlie Taft up to the 1st line and Archie Skalbeck and William Rapuzzi down to the 2nd line since the Gophers played them way back in early December.

Let’s DROP THE CLUTTERPUCK!!!

1st Period

  • The Gophers have good energy to begin the game but it will take a lot to get this confident Colorado College team to break.
  • At 4:22 of the 1st period – A shot from the point from Mark Alt is stopped in front of the net by Tigers defenseman Mike Boivin. Charlie Taft was going out to defend Alt so he breaks through the neutral zone for a breakaway pass but Mike Reilly gets a piece of it and Alexander Krushelnyski picks up the loose puck, moves to the outside around Mark Alt and heads in the left center of the Gopher zone. Alt turns and is still in position to defend Krushelnyski  but he poke checks and lunges to the outside and Krushelnyski holds the puck back to avoid the poke check then puts the puck between Alt’s legs and takes a shot. Adam Wilcox makes the save but that’s a great move by Krushelnyski!
  • At 6:22 – Scott Winkler gets a pass in the neutral zone right as he’s entering the Gopher zone and takes a shot on goal. Jake Parenteau went down to one knee to block the shot. The shot gets through, Adam Wilcox makes the save but leaves a rebound and Winkler has the step on Parenteau to get to it first but Parenteau dives and knocks the puck away with his stick. Great play to get to that second shot and deflect it away!
  • At the 8:00 mark, Ben Marshall goes back to get a dumped in puck and Alexander Krushelnyski gets to him as he’s getting to the puck and Marshall hits the boards pretty hard. Seth Helgeson picks up the puck, goes around his own net and skates up the right side of the ice through the neutral zone, moves to the right around Mike Boivin and goes to the net. He has a bad angle going to the net but he makes a nice little backhand pass to AJ Michaelson for a one-time try. Joe Howe makes the save but that was a heck of a play from Helgeson.
    • That’s the most impressive play I’ve even seen Seth Helgeson make! WOW!
      • He went coast-to-coast and made a nice pass creating a scoring chance! What the…?
  • At 10:08 - Kyle Rau dumps the puck into the left corner and skates in with speed on the forecheck to throw a body check on Aaron Harstad. Harstad is able to play the puck around the left corner but Christian Isackson is the first one there. He cycles to Nick Bjugstad who goes beneath the goal line then passes to Kyle Rau for a one-timer to Isackson in the slot but Rylan Schwartz is there to block the shot!
  • Seth Ambroz just had a shift where he couldn’t complete a pass to save his life. He tried like 4 passes and all of them were off-target or hard to handle.
  • PENALTY – Peter Stoykewych for Hooking on Christian Isackson at 16:37 of the 1st period - Christian Isackson takes the puck in the left of the Tiger zone and carries it all the way around the boards with Peter Stoykewych trailing him the whole way. He’s leaning on him and sticking his stick in front of him and hooked him a couple times and finally makes Isackson go down and will sit for a couple minutes because of it!
    • He probably hooked him twice. The 1st time the official let it go but not the 2nd.
    • He also has his arm on him the whole way.
      • I don’t think that matters but I think officials do.
  • Not sure if its bad ice or how much its been used the last couple days but the puck is bouncing all over the place! It won’t settle down, bouncing over stick and having an affect on the game!

2nd Period

  • Doug McLeod says, “If you’re not familiar Minnesota’s style…Kyle Rau has a cannon from long range and he’s not afraid to use it. He’s going to maybe tone it down a little in the playoffs, I don’t know, but he loves to unload that thing and it creates the problem that even when he gets ready and looks like he’s going slap it, will he or won’t he, you gotta be ready both ways if you’re the defending team!” What?
    • The man is losing it! I will assume he means Nate Schmidt but I don’t want to try to understand what he’s thinking! That seems dangerous!
  • GOAL! – Rylan Schwartz from Peter Stoykewych & Eamonn McDermott at 0:59 of the 2nd period - Peter Stoykewych gets a d-to-d pass from Eamonn McDermott at the right of the Tiger zone to get around Nick Bjugstad and he skates it up the right boards. Christian Isackson comes to him near the red line so he passes to his left to Rylan Schwartz coming up the right center of the neutral zone. Schwartz skates into the Gopher zone and in on Jake Parenteau. Parenteau gives a little too much gap so he’s able to pull the puck back into a good shooting position and fire a shot into the upper left corner of the net past Adam Wilcox. TIGERS 1-0!!!
    • Parenteau gave him too much space and went down to block the shot.
      • That also blocks his goalie’s view of the shot.
      • Gap control is huge for defense!
        • Forwards need time and space to be effective! Take that away from them by closing in on them.
          • You should be able to reach them with your stick at the blue line!
            • Use the blue line as another defender!
        • A lot of defenseman worry about getting beat and that’s why they give such a big gap! That doesn’t work!
          • You should still be able to get in his way or at least angle him off so his shooting/passing angle is tough
    • Schwartz doesn’t even follow through all the way with his shot and it hits the upper left corner!
      • Also, when Parenteau goes down, Schwartz pulls the puck back using him as a screen and changing the angle of the shot!
      • That was a Snipe!
  • GOAL! – Charlie Taft from Alexander Krushelnyski & Eamonn McDermott at 4:24 of the 2nd period - A forecheck in the left corner of the Gopher zone results in Alexander Krushelnyski passing the puck back near the middle of the blue line. Eamonn McDermott has to skate in to get the puck and quickly turn around to his right on his backhand to avoid Kyle Rau. Christian Isackson is right there when he turns around so McDermott just makes a backhand pass up the middle to Krushelnyski, who has to turn to catch the pass and then turn a little more to shoot the puck. The shot is blocked by Mark Alt, drops to the ice and Alt picks it up and starts to skate up ice out of the zone but the puck is bouncing the whole way and gets away from Alt so Krushelnyski taps the puck away and up to Charlie Taft at the top of the slot. Taft gets it on his forehand as he’s turning around, makes a quick little move to the backhand and back to his forehand and skates to the outside of Mike Reilly, takes a shot from just to the inside of the right face-off dot and it goes through the five-hole of Adam Wilcox! TIGERS 2-0!!!
    • A turnover in your own zone is a killer!
      • Your team is breaking out and all heading one way and then a bouncing puck gets away from you and now everyone’s going the wrong way!
    • Mike Reilly played the puck when he should’ve played the body!
      • This caused him to be in a bad position to stop the play.
        • Taft was turning around and was on his backhand so you have to figure that most players are going to favor their forehand in that situation.
        • Plus, Taft had no speed as he was in the process of turning around because he had just gotten a loose puck so Reilly could very easily have just taken the body or used his body to get between Taft and the puck, taken the puck and cleared the zone.
  • PENALTY – Seth Helgeson for Cross-Checking on Hunter Fejes at 5:00 of the 2nd period - Just Seth Helgeson being physical and going overboard by continually pushing.
    • It wasn’t a cross-check as his stick wasn’t in both hands but it was easily a roughing call!
  • GREAT SAVE! – Joe Howe on Nick Bjugstad at 5:15 of the 2nd period - Off a face-off to the right of Adam Wilcox, Nick Bjugstad wins the face-off back to Nate Schmidt coming off the half wall and Schmidt sends it around the boards. Kyle Rau is the first to the puck as it comes around the corner and he chips it up the middle as Bjugstad is breaking and with Bjugstad’s speed, he’s able to break away from Mike Boivin to come in on Joe Howe all alone. He makes a quick move and shoots low glove side buy Howe is there to make the save.
    • The never really settled down again.
      • I don’t know how much that played into Bjugstad’s shot though.
      • Boivin got back and made it so Bjugstad had to make a quick decision and shot!
  • GREAT SAVE! – Adam Wilcox on William Rapuzzi at 6:15 of the 2nd period - After a puck bounces over Mike Boivin’s stick to clear the zone, Tom Serratore forechecks him back into his own zone making him turn back then goes for a change. Problem is Jake Parenteau also went for a change and being its the 2nd period, it’s the far change so that leaves William Rapuzzi open for a blue line to blue line pass and he gets a mini-breakaway. Rapuzzi goes in and takes a shot basically into the chest of Adam Wilcox so he makes the save but leaves a rebound and Rapuzzi gets a 2nd chance but Wilcox makes that save and freezes the puck.
    • Bad change on a penalty kill but I’m sure Parenteau didn’t know Serratore would peel off and change there.
  • PENALTY – Eamonn McDermott for Interference on Sam Warning at 9:43 of the 2nd period - Sam Warning dumps the puck in and tries to get around Eamonn McDermott and McDermott gets in his way AND knocks him down and now he gets to sit in the Bin of Sin for a couple minutes and think about it!
  • GREAT SAVE! – Adam Wilcox on Archie Skalbeck at 14:18 of the 2nd period - Off a face-off to Joe Howe’s left, Scott Winkler wins it back to Aaron Harstad in front of the net and he chips ‘er deep off the glass getting past Nate Schmidt at the right point. William Rapuzzi gets on his horse and beats out an icing call. Seth Helgeson was playing left defenseman and the puck went down Schmidt’s side. Archie Skalbeck is barely trailing the play behind Nate Schmidt so Helgeson pursues Rapuzzi in the corner and he decides to take the body allowing to make a blind centering pass right in front of the net to Archie Skalbeck for a one-timer that he just redirects at the middle of the net. Adam Wilcox read the play and made the save!
    • Seth Helgeson makes the right read to go to the puck because he was going to get to Rapuzzi before Schmidt but he didn’t get his stick down towards the puck taking the body instead and the puck gets through.
      • I’m all for taking the body but if you can get your stick on the puck and at least knock it away, do it!
        • You can continue and still throw a body check after you’ve knocked the puck away!
        • Don’t have blinders on and just think about throwing a big hit!
    • Schmidt doesn’t stay with Archie Skalbeck and doesn’t get down to block the pass from coming through!
      • Get the puck or the man! One or the other! Neither doesn’t work very well!
    • Give William Rapuzzi credit for looking back to see where his teammate was and where he was going so he could throw the puck to the front of the net!
  • PENALTY – Christian Isackson for Interference on Rylan Schwartz at 19:00 of the 2nd period - The puck is chipped out to center ice and Seth Helgeson is there to catch it, drop it to the ice and dump it back in. He dumps the puck in but puts it on goal for some reason. Joe Howe saves it and it rebounds to Aaron Harstad and he chips it off the glass. The puck hits one of the stanchions holding the glass together and bounces out to center ice. Seth Helgeson stops, reacting to the deflected puck, but he’s too far away to get to it. This helps the Tigers break out and Rylan Schwartz sees the chance to go to the net on a 3-on-2. Christian Isackson follows him and as Schwartz gets to the net, he gets too much of him and knocks him down with the puck nowhere around them so he gets a 2-minute minor for Interference! Welcome to the Bin of Sin!!!
    • Why do you shoot the puck on goal from center ice if your Seth Helgeson?
      • Put it in the corner so your forwards a chance to get in on the forecheck and make something happen.
      • The idea of dumping the puck is to make the other team go get it so don’t “give” it to the goalie so he can start the break out, even if it is with a rebound.
    • Good job by Rylan Schwartz to go to the net hard!
      • Force the opponent to defend you even if you don’t have the puck!!!

3rd Period

  • GREAT SAVE – Adam Wilcox on Rylan Schwartz at 1:00 of the 3rd period - A one-timer on the power play from Rylan Schwartz at the top of the right face-off circle is tipped on the way to the net but Adam Wilcox makes a great reaction and gets the toe of his right leg on it! WOW!
  • MAJOR PENALTY! – Joe Marciano for Cross-Checking on Tom Serratore at 4:50 of the 3rd period - Tom Serratore gets the puck from Seth Ambroz behind the Tigers net and skates around the right corner (Joe Howe’s left). He’s being pursued/defended by Joe Marciano. Serratore gets around the corner and delays or starts to stop to turn around and gets pummeled and goes head first into the boards!
    • They call it a cross-check but again, he didn’t have both hands on his stick so it’s not a cross-check!
    • It’s definitely a penalty and I agree with it being a major with the force Tom Serratore was sent into the boards! WOW!
    • This could be the break* the Gophers need to get back into this game!
      • The Tigers penalty kill has been good during their winning streak though.
  • Nothing doing during the whole 5 minutes of the power play!
    • The Gopher only had one shot on goal on a major penalty! Ouch!
    • When a team doesn’t score on a 5-minute power play, they usually end up losing that game!
  • The Gophers pull the goalie with 3:12 remaining in hopes of getting something going!
    • One goal can change how a team plays so let’s see if they can get anything going here!
  • Nope! Nothing! Great game by the Tigers and they will take on the Wisconsin Badgers in tomorrow night’s WCHA Final Five Championship Game!

Final Score

Minnesota Gophers 0, Colorado College Tigers 2

The Gophers didn’t come out like a team that wanted to win tonight! They were outworked and just didn’t look ready for this game! Colorado College had nothing to lose knowing if they lose any game from here on out, they are done for the season! This is why the playoffs are hard! Nobody wants their season to end! or their career to end! Go out and play every game like it’s your last game because you never know what’s going to happen! The Gophers knew they were in the NCAA tournament already, being the #1 ranked team in the nation, but that means nothing if they don’t play like the #1 team in the nation! Disappointing effort from Gopher hockey!!! Hopefully they learn from it!

Gopher Hockey Recap from GopherSports.com – Minnesota Falls to Colorado College at WCHA Final Five
Gopher Hockey Box Score from GopherSports.com – Minnesota-Colorado College Stats
Gopher Hockey Recap from CCTigers.com – Broadmoor Trophy one win away!

In other WCHA College Hockey action tonight,

  • Wisconsin won vs St. Cloud State 4-1

Bring The CLUTTER in the comments, on Google+ on Twitter and on Facebook.

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Gopher Hockey Playoff Notes vs Bemidji State Beavers – 3-16-2013

The Minnesota Gopher Hockey team escaped with a win last night so how will they come out tonight? How will Bemidji State come out after playing a very solid game last night? Will either team make adjustments after such a close game? It’s always difficult to end a team’s season so expect a very competitive game!

Line Chart – Minnesota Golden Gophers

Left Wing – Center – Right Wing
Kyle Rau-7 – Nick Bjugstad-27 – Christian Isackson-26
Nate Condon-16 – Erik Haula-19 – Zach Budish-24
Tom Serratore-14 – Travis Boyd-22 – Seth Ambroz-17
Jake Parenteau-6 – AJ Michaelson-15 – Justin Holl-12
Left Defenseman – Right Defenseman
Brady Skjei-2 – Nate Schmidt-29
Seth Helgeson-4 – Ben Marshall-10
Mike Reilly-5 – Mark Alt-20
Goalie
Adam Wilcox-32
Mike Shibrowski-1

Scratches: G-Matt LaPrade-30, F-Ryan Reilly-9, F-Christian Horn-18, F-Jared Larson-23
Injured: F-Connor Reilly-21, G-Ryan Coyne-31, F-Sam Warning-11

Line Chart – Bemidji State Beavers

Left Wing – Center – Right Wing
Jordan George-28 – Aaron McLeod-14 – Ben Kinne-9
Brance Orban-7 – Jeff Jubinville-12 – Phil Brewer-29
Radoslav Illo-18 – Cory Ward-13 – Danny Mattson-16
Markus Gerbrandt-23 – Mitch Cain-27 – Brad Robbins-17
Left Defenseman – Right Defenseman
Jake Areshenko-8 – Brady Wacker-25
Matt Prapavessis-22 – Graeme McCormack-11
Sam Rendle-20 – Sam Windle-15
Goalie
Andrew Walsh-30
Mathieu Dugas-35

Scratches/Injured: G-Reid Mimmack-1, D-James Hansen-3, D-Matt Carlson-5, D-Kyle Brodie-26, F-David Boehm-4, F-Tyler Tosunian-19, F-Matt Hartmann-21

Looks like identical lineups for both teams. No reason for changes from a close game. Sam Warning is still out because of injury. Apparently he was injured in practice during the week and is week-to-week at this point. That’s a tough loss for the Gophers. Warning has been tremendous this season!

Let’s DROP THE CLUTTERPUCK!!!

1st Period

  • Nice job of putting the graphic up during the play blocking the majority of the bottom half of the screen. That’s brilliant, FSN! Brilliant!
  • Seem to be late on the graphics tonight! Did someone important show up late or something?
  • Nate Schmidt skates in and has an opportunity to shoot with Travis Boyd near and he decides to give it to Boyd for him to shoot!
    • Ummm…NO! I’ll pick the Schmidt slapper over pretty much anyone else on the Gophers. Knock the Schmidt out of it!
      • Maybe Bjugstad’s one-timer? Maybe!
  • “The Gophers, when Kyle Rau tallies at least a scoring point, are 22-1-1! He had two scoring points last night, a goal and an assist!” – FSN announcer Doug McLeod
    • What the hell is a scoring point, Doug McLeod?
    • Can you have a different kind of point in a hockey game?
      • There’s goals and assists! Ginos & Apples! What other points are there?
      • A point of +/-?
        • No! That would be a stat!
      • A hit, a takeaway, a blocked shot, a save, a win, a loss, a goal against, a goal for, a shot?
        • Let’s see…no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no and…uhhh….NO!
    • What the hell is he talking about?
  • PENALTY – Nick Bjugstad for Boarding on Phil Brewer at 16:18 of the 1st period - Phil Brewer has the puck at the left half-wall and Nick Bjugstad pushes him into the boards and the official calls him for boarding.
    • A borderline call, maybe. Not sure if it should be called in a playoff game or not? It’s debatable. I could go either way on it.
    • It was a somewhat dangerous spot to push a guy but he wasn’t facing the boards and he didn’t turn late so it appears Bjugstad is just a strong kid and able to push guys off the puck. That doesn’t necessarily mean it’s a penalty though.
  • GOAL! (POWER PLAY) – Jordan George from Ben Kinne & Radoslav Illo at 16:49 of the 1st period - The Beavers are working the puck around on the power play at the top of the zone trying to get Adam Wilcox moving by going cross-ice and setting up a one-timer. Matt Prapavessis fakes a slap shot at the center of the blue line and passes it back to Radoslav Illo at the top of the right face-off circle for a low one-timer slap shot. Wilcox makes the save but the puck drops right next to his right leg pad. Ben Kinne tries to jam it in (or through) Wilcox but its stopped and the puck comes right back out. Kinne tries again but this time the puck goes off the toe of his stick, goes through Nate Schmidt’s legs and Jordan George is there to pick up the loose puck and put it in the open net. BEAVERS 1-0!!!
    • Adam Wilcox has to control that rebound!
    • Travis Boyd and Tom Serratore were doing fine covering the point but then Boyd goes from Prapavessis to Illo forcing Serratore to switch but then Boyd gives Illo too much space by going back to the middle. That caused both Serratore and Boyd to be in the middle at the same time when Prapavessis faked the shot.
      • Not sure if Boyd called for a switch or is just trying to do too much.
      • From the replay, it looks like Boyd was just following the puck which is usually bad for the kill.
        • Need to have all four penalty killers working together to cover the whole area.

2nd Period

  • FSN really bothers me with missing face-offs and live action by showing the bench and replays and not getting back to live quick enough.
    • A gopher shot hit the post and an icing happens somewhat soon after it but FSN shows Ben Marshall on the bench for like 15 seconds and then goes to a replay and you can here the puck being dropped while they are still showing the replay!
      • Why does it take that long to get to the replay?
  • Brady Skjei receives a pass from Nick Bjugstad at the right point. He has to catch it and then shoot so it gets blocked but he gets it back and skates in behind the goal line, around the goal and comes around the net on his backhand and just flicks it low!
    • That’s a great scoring chance but you have to try to get the puck high there.
      • Skjei didn’t come around the net with much speed so Andrew Walsh was already there blocking the low part of the net.
    • Work on those backhands so you can get it up high really quickly for those in close scoring chances!
      • Work on every part of your backhand if you ask me! UNLEASH THE BACKHAND!
        • Passing
        • Shooting
        • Handling the puck
        • Strength
        • Accuracy
  •  GOAL! – Corey Ward from Sam Rendle & Sam Windle at 9:27 of the 2nd period - Sam Windle floats the puck through the neutral trying to get it to Radoslav Illo but Christian Isackson gets his glove on it but not full possession. The puck lands near the Gopher bench. A bouncing puck eludes Isackson & Illo gets possession at the red line, turns up ice and passes to Danny Mattson at the left of the Gopher blue line. He gets by a Ben Marshall poke check, skates to the wall and turns toward the goal only to be met by Kyle Rau but he’s able to pull the puck back and pass it cross-ice to Sam Windle. Windle makes a one-time pass to Sam Rendle and he catches and takes a low snap shot. Corey Ward had driven the net as soon as the Beavers entered the zone but turned towards the left boards when Mattson was met by Rau. He got back to the net, fighting through the defense of Seth Helgeson to get his stick on the shot and deflecting it over Adam Wilcox’ left pad and it’s BEAVERS 2-0!!!
    • The Gopher defense wasn’t horrible on this play but there are a few things that could’ve helped.
      • The transition was ok but Nick Bjugstad and Christian Isackson get too low in their own zone and don’t cover the defense that are trailing the play.
        • Isackson chases Radoslav Illo when he should just hand him off to Ben Marshall and go defend the point. His guy was who shot the puck.
          • He gets out to him and goes down to block the shot which is good but it looks like he had time to get his stick in front of the puck and deflect it from ever hitting the net.
        • Bjugstad gets to his man but wasn’t close enough to him to make a play on the pass and because he wasn’t close enough to him, that allowed him to be open for a pass.
      • Seth Helgeson does an ok job of defending Corey Ward but he doesn’t get the most important part of him and that’s his stick.
        • Credit Ward for battling through the check to get his stick in the shooting lane!
  • PENALTY – Jordan George for Tripping on Mike Reilly at 15:26 of the 2nd period - Mark Alt pinched and is in the right corner and makes a centering pass but nobody is there except Jordan George. He turns and starts skating out of his zone and the Gophers only have Mike Reilly back on defense. Erik Haula quickly back checks and gets to George before he leaves the zone making him lose the puck. The puck goes far enough forward for Mike Reilly to pick it up and skate back into his own zone. He has George forechecking him now so Reilly fakes a move one way then goes the other way and George gets his stick in Reilly’s skates tripping him up and getting a visit to the penalty box for it.
  • GOAL (POWER PLAY) – Nick Bjugstad from Kyle Rau & Erik Haula at 15:33 of the 2nd period - Nick Bjugstad wins the face-off back to Erik Haula at the right point. Haula skates down the right boards taking a look at what his options are and passes to Kyle Rau below the goal line in the right corner. Rau takes the puck to the net as soon as he gets it then makes a move around the stick of Jake Areshenko and then passes it to Nick Bjugstad, who had skated around to the left face-off dot after winning the face-off at the right face-off dot, and he has nothing but an open net to shoot at and the Gophers get on the board! GOPHERS 1-2!!!
    • Hard to say the defense played that wrong.
      • Maybe Areshenko can get down to try to block Rau from getting to the net or blocking the passing lane but it’s easy to second-guess now.
    • Just a great aggressive play by Kyle Rau!
      • He sees Nick Bjugstad open and gets him the puck when the defense thought he was just going to go to the net with it!
  • GOAL! – Jeff Jubinville from Phil Brewer & Brance Orban at 15:47 of the 2nd period - It takes the Beavers all of 14 seconds to get their 2-goal lead back! The Gophers win the ensuing face-off and Nate Schmidt takes it down the right boards and tries to pass to Travis Boyd but the puck hits Sam Rendle in the skates and deflects back towards the boards. Brance Orban is the first to get there. Tom Serratore stayed back at the blue line when Nate Schmidt pinched so he forces Orban to make a play and Orban makes a cross-ice pass to Phil Brewer coming up the right of the neutral zone. Jake Parenteau reads the play and tries to intercept the pass but doesn’t get his stick on it. That send Brewer in all alone on Adam Wilcox. He tries to five-hole but Wilcox has it covered but the puck rebounds back out in the slot and Jeff Jubinville gets to it and flips it up into the right corner over the glove of Adam Wilcox and its BEAVERS 3-1!!!
    • Jeff Jubinville was one of the furthest guys back in the zone when the puck was turned over. He was at his own goal line and got on his horse and drove the net and got there for the rebound and a big goal for the Beavers!
      • He passed every Gopher except Nate Schmidt on the way to the net!
      • Schmidt was on his horse and got there to disrupt the shot of Brewer.
      • Tom Serratore had Jubinville but Jubinville battled through it to get to the puck!
    • I think a couple Gopher players hesitated when it looked like Jake Parenteau might intercept the pass.
    • Should Jake Parenteau try to intercept the pass as the last guy back?
      • It’s easy to say no after they give up a goal because of it but if he does intercept it than the Gophers might get a scoring chance so….that’s Hockey!!!
      • He probably doesn’t try that if the Gophers aren’t down by a goal!
  • GOAL! – Nate Condon from Erik Haula & Zach Budish at 18:54 of the 2nd period - The puck is  deep in the Gopher zone. Zach Budish gets it in the right corner but loses in on the rail. Danny Mattson gets to it and tries to pass it back to Radoslav Illo near the right point but since the puck is on the rail, his pass goes in the air and Illo has to knock it down. It gets past him a little bit so Erik Haula tries to get to it and go up ice but Illo reaches back and quickly tries to dump it back in the zone. Zach Budish has now moved up the boards so he’s there to stop the puck from going deep into the zone and passes to Erik Haula at center ice. Haula, skating across the red line, catches the pass and basically leaves it for Nate Condon who’s coming up the center of the ice. Haula then turns up ice and follows Condon into the zone. Condon gets over the blue line and drops the puck to Haula and drives the net. Haula gets the puck and is looking to take a shot. Sam Windle is playing back on defense so he stops to try to keep Haula from shooting but Haula pulls the puck in to change the angle of the shot and gets it to go through Windle’s legs. Condon driving the net makes defenseman Jake Areshenko go with him clogging the view of Andrew Walsh and the shooting lane and the puck ends up hitting Condon in the right leg deflecting through Walsh’s five-hole and slowly going over the goal line & its GOPHERS 2-3!!!
    • Danny Mattson should probably try to keep the puck deep rather than throw it back towards the blue line in the air. Keep the puck deep! You have a 2-goal lead!
      • Don’t help your opponent break out of their zone by sending the puck back towards your end!
    • The Beaver defense had a pretty big gap giving Erik Haula the time and space to get a shot off.
    • Simply getting the shot off with Nate Condon driving the net turned that play into a goal!
      • Don’t make the game too difficult! Do the little things like driving to the net, shooting the puck and keeping the puck deep!
    • Huge goal late in the 2nd period to get the Gophers within one goal!
      • Late Goals Are Money!!!
  • PENALTY – Matt Prapavessis for Interference on Kyle Rau at 19:44 of the 2nd period - With the Gophers feeling some momentum, they sustain some offense in the Beaver zone and Seth Helgeson dumps the puck to the right corner. Kyle Rau was in front of the net with Matt Prapvessis and he tries to get around him to get to the puck and Prapavessis gets his stick up high and ends up knocking Rau down getting an interference call with only 16 seconds left in the period.
    • Kyle Rau appears to go down pretty easy there but looking at the replay, he was in awkward place with Prapavessis arm and stick up around his head area.
      • I’m not saying he’s innocent, I’m just saying don’t be so quick to judge until you see the whole play.
      • He’s been moving his feet and making things happen in the playoffs.

3rd Period

  • The Gophers have come out with a lot of energy in the 3rd period playing with confidence and a sense of urgency and purpose to tie this game up!
  • Travis Boyd steals a pass from Matt Prapavessis, goes to the net and gets taken down by Prapavessis but no call is made by the “WCHA Officials.”
    • Clear trip as Prapavessis chopped down at Boyd’s stick then hits his skate and Boyd goes down! That is usually called tripping but….this is the playoffs? I don’t know!
  • GOAL! – AJ Michaelson from Erik Haula & Zach Budish at 7:38 of the 3rd period - Nate Schmidt skates the puck into the center of the Beaver zone with Zach Budish on the left boards and Erik Haula on his right. All five Beaver players go to Schmidt so he dumps it into the left corner. Budish gets to the puck just before Graeme McCormack but there’s a battle for it along the back boards. Erik Haula had come in on Schmidt’s right and skated around the net, past Budish & McCormack to the left half-wall. Budish comes out with the puck and passes it to Haula. The pass was in the air and off the boards so Haula has to control the pass and just takes a shot on goal. The puck was on edge so it kind of knuckles on Andrew Walsh and he leaves a juicy rebound that AJ Michaelson picks up, moves to his backhand and puts in the open net. The game is TIED AT 3!!!
    • More puck-watching by the Beavers on defense!
      • Both Phil Brewer and Radoslav Illo are in front of the net just standing there. They both see the shot from Erik Haula and neither of them move to get to a possible rebound until they see it. That’s too late, boys!
        • AJ Michaelson had just come off the bench on a line change for Nate Condon.
        • Brewer turned his head but just kept standing there like Michaelson was another teammates player to cover.
          • Confusion on who Brewer should be covering? He’s a wing, his center was on the left point and Illo isn’t usually on his line.
            • I have to believe that Brewer thinks he’s covering one of the d but he was still just watching the puck.
        • McCormack has to win a battle! Get better position on Budish because he’s a big, strong forward!
          • He had the inside line on the puck, probably could’ve gotten his stick on it before Budish and he had his skate right next to the puck but he focused on Budish, not the puck!
            • Hard to win a battle for the puck if you don’t know where it is!
        • Matt Prapavessis was covering Haula but slowed down to take a whack at Budish when he came out with the puck. That left Haula open and with enough time to control the pass and just get a shot off.
          • If you can’t get to the player you’re defending/covering, at the very least take an angle that will block the shot or get in the shooting lane or get your stick on the shot.
          • or….get back to the front of the net! Clear rebounds! Get a body on someone!
      • More talk on the defense would’ve helped so everyone knows who they have to cover.
      • Andrew Walsh would probably like that one back since he left a juicy rebound.
  • GOAL! – Ben Marshall UNASSISTED at 19:07 of the 3rd period - Nate Condon tries to skate the puck in the left of the Beaver zone and gets by Sam Windle and the puck is cleared to the neutral zone. It’s picked up by Ben Marshall by the Gopher bench and he sees the Beavers making a line change so he sees an opportunity to make a play. He has a step on Corey Ward and the defenseman don’t have enough speed going backwards so he goes in at the center of the blue line going to the right, gets around Jake Areshenko and heads in on Andrew Walsh on his backhand and fires for the five-hole and scores with 58 seconds left in regulation!!! GOPHERS 4-3!!!
    • That’s Ben Marshall being Ben Marshall!!! That is how you GOPHER IT!!!
    • I see Ben Marshall saying to himself, “Are they really changing right now? I’m Ben Marshall!!! THIS IS MY TIME!!!”
    • DONE!!!
    • Bad change? Maybe because it was 3 players at the same time but…
    • As a defenseman, if there’s only one player coming at you on offense and he has no help, you take the body and forget about the puck!
      • Could Jake Areshenko have taken the body on Ben Marshall there and stopped the scoring chance?
        • Bottom line is the odds are better for taking the body than the puck in that situation! Even if he gets only a piece of him, he disrupts the play and with teammates coming that’s all he has to do. His teammates can pick up the loose change!
  • Bemidji State tries to dump it in off a tip to get the puck deep and it goes to Nate Schmidt and he snaps it out of the zone but it goes for an icing! Face-off in the Gopher zone to Adam Wilcox’ left with 1.6 seconds left!
    • Corey Ward tries to slap the face-off at the net but it goes wide and this one is over!

FINAL SCORE
Minnesota Gophers 5, Bemidji State Beavers 1

The Gophers may have escaped this game as well since they were trailing 2-0 halfway through the game! Yes, it’s the playoffs and the Beavers had a good game plan but should they have trouble beating the Beavers? or is that just playoff hockey? Is it better for a team to have to battle to win a couple close games early in the playoffs or to easily win a couple games? or does it matter either way just as long as you get the win? Tell us what you think in the comments!

Gopher Hockey Recap from GopherSports.comMarshall’s Late Goal Sends Gophers to WCHA Final Five
Gopher Hockey Box Score from GopherSports.comMinnesota-BSU Stats
Gopher Hockey Recap from BSUBeavers.comBeavers fall, 4-3, to Minnesota to end season

In other WCHA College Hockey action tonight,
Home=”vs”, Away=”@”
* Colorado College won @ Denver 2-1
* Nebraska-Omaha won @ Minnesota State 2-1
* St. Cloud State won vs Alaska-Anchorage 5-1
* Michigan Tech won @ North Dakota 2-1
* Wisconsin won vs Minnesota-Duluth 4-1

In other College Hockey action,
Home=”vs”, Away=”@”
* Quinnipiac won vs Cornell 10-0
* After losing 3-2 in Game 1, the Bobcats took their anger out on Cornell in Game 2! WOW!

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