SCSU HOCKEY: LATEST UPDATES AND NOTES
St. Cloud, MN – A mere two weeks ago, the SCSU Huskies were preparing to face the Western Michigan Broncos in the first round of the NCHC playoffs in Kalamazoo, MI. Since then, our world has changed in unprecedented ways – in a way we’ve never experienced in our lifetime. MORE HERE
NCAA DIVISION I ICE HOCKEY CHAMPIONSHIPS CANCELLED
NCHC TOURNAMENT PLAY IS CANCELLED EFFECTIVE IMMEDIATELY
NCHC QUARTERFINALS: WIN OR DONE FOR SCSU VS WMU
St. Cloud, MN – At no. 24 in the Pairwise rankings and with a current probability of making the NCAA tournament without winning the NCHC Frozen Faceoff at about 3 percent, there is no margin for error in this weekends NCHC quarterfinal series vs Western Michigan. In past years, this would have been a favorable matchup as the Huskies had never lost a game at WMU’s Lawson Arena. However, in January, the Huskies were schooled quite decisively, getting swept by the current no.16 ranked Broncos who are also 18th in the Pairwise. With both teams above the Pairwise cutoff line, two losses by either team would be lights out for the 2019-20 season. MORE HERE
HUSKIES FINISH FLAT WITH 6-1 LOSS TO #5 BULLDOGS
Duluth, MN – The Huskies finished the NCHC regular season on a flat note surrendering six goals to the #5 ranked UMD Bulldogs getting rolled 6-1 and swept in the weekend series at Amsoil Arena in Duluth. Granted, the Bulldogs had more on the line with the possibility of a league co-championship pending the outcome of the North Dakota vs Omaha game (UND won 5-0). The Huskies on the other hand, were at the mercy of Denver and Western Michigan to determine their opponent for next weekend. A 5-1 win by Denver over Colorado College sealed the playoff seeding with the Huskies heading to Kalamazoo, MI for their first road playoff series since the 2016-17 season.
BULLDOGS CAPITALIZE ON SCSU MISCUES IN 4-1 WIN
Duluth, MN – The Huskies needed a win badly on Friday vs the UMD Bulldogs at Amsoil Arena in Duluth, MN. The formula to win was to score first, ride some good goaltending from David Hrenak and grind out a win like they did against the Bulldogs in a January sweep. The game plan was working perfectly for the first 37:38 of the contest until the Huskies fell on the sword and yielded a 4-1 win for the #5 ranked Bulldogs in the first game of the final regular season series of 2019-20. The loss eliminated any possibility for the Huskies to earn home ice for the NCHC quarterfinals and steered their destiny to either Denver or Western Michigan next weekend. MORE HERE
HUSKIES FACE #5 BULLDOGS IN CRUCIAL YEAR-END BATTLE
St. Cloud, MN – The Huskies conclude the regular season with a trip to Duluth in a crucial battle with the #5 ranked UMD Bulldogs. Obviously, there is more on the line for St. Cloud State as the Bulldogs are securely in second place with home-ice for the first round of the NCHC playoffs locked in at Amsoil Arena next weekend. The Huskies, on the other hand, still have hope for a third-place finish, albeit a long-shot and a fair opportunity to finish in fourth place as they trail Western Michigan by two points heading into the weekend. The tie breaker gets complicated but at a minimum, the Huskies need to capture at least one win this weekend to have a chance at a fourth place finish. The Bulldogs on the other hand, look to face either Omaha or Miami in the first round of the playoffs. They will also look for some payback vs the Huskies after being swept by SCSU in a January series in St. Cloud.
DENVER PIONEERS RALLY FOR 5-2 WEEKEND SPLIT
St. Cloud, MN – After being tagged with a 5-1 loss on Friday you knew the #6 ranked Pioneers would be in desperation mode in the series finale on Saturday. Entering the game with a 2-5-0 record in the last seven games, the #6 Pairwise Pioneers needed to begin to create some momentum nearing the playoffs and perhaps grease the teams ego after a gut punch the night before. With a one-point lead over the Huskies in the league standings entering Saturday’s game, the Pioneers needed a better outcome or they’d be looking at the possibility of hitting the road for the NCHC playoffs. They got it with a dominant effort and 5-2 win to increase their lead over the Huskies by four points with two regular season games remaining. The win also put a damper on the senior celebration for five players – Jack Ahcan, Jack Poehling, Nick Poehling, Jake Wahlin and Clark Kuster who may have seen their last game at the Herb Brooks National Hockey Center. MORE HERE
HUSKIES TOPPLE #6 PIONEERS 5-1
St. Cloud, MN – The red-hot SCSU Huskies stretched their unbeaten streak to seven games as they toppled the #6 ranked Denver Pioneers by a 5-1 score at the HBNHC on Friday, February 28. Entering the weekend four points behind Denver for the final home playoff position, they closed the margin to just one point with the win. In a show of offense seldom seen this season, the Huskies ambushed the Pioneers with three goals in the second period and rolled to the four goal win. Kevin Fitzgerald had a big night with two goals and an assist and the Huskies had success on 2 of 6 power play opportunities. David Hrenak had another outstanding game in goal stopping 31 of 32 shots on goal (96.8%) to earn his 12th win of the season. The Huskies look towards a possible sweep in the series finale on Saturday. MORE HERE
WOMENS HOCKEY: HUSKIES ENTER POSTSEASON VS #3 GOPHERS
St. Cloud, MN – The unranked SCSU Huskies attempt to extend their season this weekend as they face the #3 ranked and #2 seed Gophers in the first round of the WCHA playoffs. The Huskies enter the playoffs as the #7 seed and will be severe underdogs against a team that carries an all-time record of 91-3-3 vs St. Cloud State. The Huskies head to Minneapolis for a practice session on Thursday and begin the best-of-three series on Friday at 6:37 PM CT at Ridder Arena on the campus of the University of Minnesota. MORE HERE
TOUGH SCHEDULE CONTINUES AS SCSU HOSTS #6 DENVER PIONEERS
St. Cloud, MN – The grind continues for the unranked SCSU Huskies as they host #6 ranked Denver University at the Herb Brooks National Hockey Center this weekend. After a yeoman’s effort last weekend vs then #1 North Dakota garnering 5 of 6 league points, the Huskies will attempt to gain more league points as they face fourth place Denver. With four points separating the squads in the NCHC standings, this weekends results could determine whether they host a first-round NCHC quarterfinal series or (likely) hit the road (at Denver) in a couple of weeks. The surging Huskies are 6-2-2 in the last ten games including earning 11 of 12 points vs top-ranked UMD and North Dakota. It won’t be an easy task facing a Denver team that had their way with the Huskies sweeping them on the road in January. This weekend’s series will once again give the evolving Huskies an indication if they are a genuine post-season contender. A successful weekend could theoretically place them within striking distance of the Pairwise “cutoff” line with another important series pending next week vs the UMD Bulldogs. MORE HERE
HUSKIES OUTLAST #1 NORTH DAKOTA 2-1 IN INTENSE NCHC BATTLE
St. Cloud, MN – From the drop of the puck on Saturday in the series finale you knew this was going to be an intense game. The fifth place Huskies were looking to mastermind a five-point weekend and the top-ranked North Dakota Fighting Hawks had no intentions of yielding any more league points to the squad from the Granite City. What you ended up with was a highly charged classic NCHC battle between two teams that have dominated the Penrose Cup since the formation of the NCHC. With crushing hits, 77 minutes of penalties and strong goaltending on both ends of the ice, the announced crowd of 5775 was treated to another classic outing between these two teams. In the end, the underdog Huskies found a way to withstand lengthy stretches of pressure by the Fighting Hawks to snare a one-goal win and a badly needed five-point weekend. For North Dakota, they’ll leave St. Cloud simmering a bit and placing on hold a Penrose Cup celebration for perhaps next weekend when they face Western Michigan on home ice. MORE HERE
HUSKIES RALLY FOR OVERTIME TIE, SHOOTOUT WIN OVER #1 UND
St. Cloud, MN – This was a typical SCSU vs UND dogfight. With 8 of the last 13 games between these two squads going to overtime, why would you have expected anything different on Friday at the Herb Brooks National Hockey Center. With an announced crowd of close to 5000 and a playoff like atmosphere, the fans were treated to a high intensity, entertaining late-season conference battle with a team that the Huskies have faced more often than any other in their Division I era. For the Huskies, it was a bit of validation that they can indeed skate with one of the top teams in the country and that perhaps they will be a factor in the playoffs. However, before we get to far ahead of ourselves, they’ll go at it again on Saturday with SCSU looking to construct another successful weekend against a top-ranked team. MORE HERE
HUSKIES TO HOST TOP-RANKED NORTH DAKOTA IN KEY SERIES
St. Cloud, MN – What a difference a year makes. When the Huskies faced North Dakota in late January of 2019, the Fighting Hawks were reeling from being swept on home ice by #52 Pairwise Canisius College. Sitting 21st in the Pairwise, 5th in the league standings and with an offense 40th in the country without a top twenty scorer, the prospects were not favorable for an NCAA bid. On the other hand, the Huskies were comfortably ranked #1 in both the Pairwise and national polls and had the second best offense in college hockey. Fast forward to this weekend and things couldn’t be more different. The Fighting Hawks fans are giddy about the teams turnaround in the last 12 months with North Dakota the top-ranked team in both the national polls and the Pairwise. Ranked #1 in offense they also have the second-leading scorer in college hockey in Jordan Kawaguchi. The Huskies are in 5th place in the NCHC with a brutally tough schedule to finish the regular season and are fighting for their life for a berth in post-season play. This weekend will give an indication as to whether the unranked Huskies are up to the challenge to compete with the best. MORE HERE
AROUND THE WORLD AND EVEN SOME SCSU HOCKEY
St. Cloud, MN – Having followed St. Cloud State University hockey since it’s inception at the Division I level and considering all the road games I’ve been to, I can confidently make the statement that I’ve been to more Husky hockey games than anyone on the planet. So, for me to depart during the heat of the last 10 conference games of the season it’s probably looked at by those that know me as a bit unusual. But, with an opportunity to float around on a cruise ship in the South China Sea on an extended vacation it wasn’t something to pass up. Naturally, extended vacations such as this have to be planned out way in advance but one still needs to be prepared for a few logistical issues and some disruptions in the itinerary. MORE HERE
NCHC BATTLES CONTINUE AS HUSKIES HOST MIAMI
St. Cloud, MN – After a disappointing weekend on the road vs Western Michigan, the Huskies return home to host the Miami RedHawks in another key league series. With ten games remaining in the conference season, the team will attempt to create some momentum and some wins as they try to secure home ice for the NCHC playoffs. That quest was severely derailed last weekend being swept and outscored 12-4 by the Broncos. Eight points separate fifth place from the league cellar and in what is starting to look insurmountable, fourth place is a distant ten points. For St. Cloud State, they can only look ahead – not behind, to see what can be salvaged out of the balance of the schedule. Currently 34th in the Pairwise, it’s a long shot to make their 7th appearance in eight seasons in the NCAA tourney unless they can perform well in the NCHC playoffs.
BRONCOS COMPLETE SWEEP WITH 6-2 WIN OVER SCSU
Kalamazoo, MI – When your penalty kill is ranked 57th out of 60 in the country, you have no margin for error. The Huskies found that out early in period one in the Saturday, January 25 rematch as the Broncos scored three first period power play goals and shut the lights out early on SCSU in a 6-2 win and convincing weekend sweep. The Huskies entered the series four points behind the Broncos with visions of capturing fourth place in the conference standings. They return home to St. Cloud ten points behind the Broncos and drop one position to sixth place. They’ll have little time to mope around as they host Miami at home next weekend and will be facing a team that is a mere three points behind them in the very tight league standings. For the Huskies, it was certainly a disappointing weekend as they surrendered the ground they made up last weekend after a sweep of the UMD Bulldogs.
BIG FIRST PERIOD LIFTS BRONCOS TO 6-2 WIN OVER SCSU
Kalamazoo, MI – After an exemplary effort by the Huskies last weekend vs the UMD Bulldogs, the Huskies had little go right in a 6-2 loss to the Western Michigan Broncos on Friday, January 24. In a dominant first period, the Broncos scored three times in the first fifteen minutes, outshot the Huskies 15-4 and never looked back in capturing this key league contest. With the win, the Broncos surged to a seven point lead over SCSU in the standings for fourth place and a possible home ice berth for the NCHC playoffs. The Huskies had never lost a game at Lawson Arena in the all-time series and are now 18-5-4 overall vs the Broncos and 7-1-3 in Kalamazoo. MORE HERE
PLAYOFF POSITIONING BEGINS AS SCSU VISITS WMU
St. Cloud, MN – It’s hard to believe but NCHC playoff hockey will be here in no time. St. Cloud State has twelve games remaining in their conference schedule split evenly between three road series and three home series. They begin their push to the playoffs with a road trip to Kalamazoo, MI and a crucial league series with the Western Michigan Broncos, currently four points above the Huskies in the NCHC standings. Following a home sweep of #12 ranked Minnesota-Duluth, the Huskies have climbed out of eighth place to fifth and have their sights on a top-four finish in the league. After an awful stretch of games going 0-5-2, the Broncos have reloaded their lineup with previously injured players and have won two in a row. Never easy in this tightly competitive conference it’ll be an intense battle in Kalamazoo. MORE HERE
UNRANKED HUSKIES THE "RODNEY DANGERFIELD " OF HOCKEY
St. Cloud MN – The US College Hockey Online rankings surfaced at noon on Monday, January 20th and the St. Cloud State University Huskies received one vote in the poll. Maybe a little surprising after the Huskies limited the defending national champion and 11th ranked UMD Bulldogs to one goal on the weekend in earning a hard fought sweep and six league points. Currently ranked 34th in the all-important Pairwise, the Huskies have been trying to dig themselves out of a hole after struggling through a 2-6-4 start through the first two months of the season. Since that time, they’ve gone 6-4-0 including an overtime loss to Omaha three weekends ago. MORE HERE
HUSKIES GET DEFENSIVE IN 2-0 WIN AND SWEEP OF #8 UMD
St. Cloud, MN – Entering the weekend series with 8th ranked UMD the matchup didn’t look favorable for the Huskies. With the 57th ranked penalty kill facing the 4th ranked power play and the 53rd ranked defense facing the 15th ranked offense they had their work cut out for them. Limiting the Bulldogs to a single goal on Friday in the 2-1 win was a degree of redemption for the Huskies defense and penalty kill. But, the million dollar question was how they would respond in the Saturday rematch knowing full well they’d be facing an ornery Bulldog squad bent on evening things up. They did one better on Saturday limiting the Bulldogs two power play opportunities to four shots on goal and shutting down the Bulldogs even strength in a 2-0 shutout for David Hrenak. MORE HERE
HUSKIES HANG TOUGH IN 2-1 WIN OVER #8 UMD
St. Cloud, MN – One would figure if you gifted the fourth- ranked power play in college hockey five opportunities, the odds of winning would be against you. Two penalties in period two and two more in period three had the maligned SCSU penalty kill, ranked 57th in college hockey on the hot seat. But, they hung tight despite facing 29 shot attempts in the final period to edge the defending National Champions 2-1 and capture the first game of the weekend series. David Hrenak, in particular, had a big night turning aside 32 of 33 shots on goal to pick up his sixth win of the season. MORE HERE
#8 BULLDOGS PRESENT CHALLENGE FOR ST. CLOUD STATE
St. Cloud, MN – The Huskies return home to face the second-place UMD Bulldogs in another key National Collegiate Hockey Conference series. Always entertaining, the Huskies are looking to get back on track after suffering losses in three straight NCHC games. The standings are very tight between position four and eight and the Huskies will need a strong weekend against the defending national champions in order to stay in reach of an ultimate home playoff position. MORE HERE
ST. CLOUD STATE HOCKEY PLAYERS OF THE DECADE
St. Cloud, MN – Recently, on my Twitter page, I did a photo narrative of some of the top moments of the past decade. Having followed this program since its transition to the Division I level in 1987-88 I’ve had an opportunity to witness many great Husky hockey players over the years. This past decade was no different. Rather than choosing an all-decade team which would allow me to choose from close to two dozen players, I made it much more difficult on myself and decided to limit this list to ten players, one for each year of the decade. However, I found it to be an extremely difficult task. I ultimately settled on ten players plus one goaltender. To be eligible, the player was required to have played the majority of his games in the last decade. My list also has a bias towards those players that completed four seasons with the Huskies. With that said, here’s my selections of players that made the biggest impact in my opinion. Players are listed in random order: MORE HERE
HUSKIES RALLY FALLS SHORT AS DENVER SWEEPS 5-3
Denver, CO – For the fans, a rebuilding process can be difficult. Inconsistent play, failed comebacks and frustrating losses are all part of the deal. The Huskies third league road trip of the season is a case in point. Four consecutive goals in the first 13:20 of period two was too much to overcome for the Huskies despite a valiant effort in a 5-3 loss at Magness Arena in front of an announced crowd of close to 6,000. The “Gold” line of Will Hammer, Jake Wahlin and Kyler Kupka deviated from their job description and were on the ice for all three Husky goals in an impressive outing. Nevertheless, in a big boy league like the NCHC moral victories mean nothing as the Huskies fell into the cellar of the National Collegiate Hockey Conference standings. The pressure continues as they return home to face defending national champions UMD at the Herb Brooks National Hockey Center next weekend.
#5 DENVER EARNS CONVINCING 6-3 WIN OVER SCSU
Denver, CO – With an opportunity to slide into third place in the league standings, the Huskies put forth a clunker on the road vs 5th ranked Denver University getting outshot 48-26 and getting rolled 6-3. When all was said and done, with Omaha defeating North Dakota and Miami defeating Colorado College, the Huskies dropped to seventh in the standings two points ahead of Colorado College. Denver outscored the Huskies 3-1 in the final period and that was the difference in the first of two games this weekend.
HUSKIES START NEW DECADE ON THE ROAD AT #5 DENVER PIONEERS
St. Cloud, MN – As one of the most successful collegiate teams of the last decade, the SCSU Huskies enter the new year and decade with a road trip to Denver to face the #5 Pioneers. In the second half of the season it’ll be nothing but conference games the rest of the way as the Huskies attempt to secure their seventh NCAA berth in the last eight seasons. On the other hand, the Pioneers who have qualified for the NCAA tournament twelve straight seasons will be a stiff challenge. Loaded with experience and talent, the Pioneers are trying to create some separation between themselves and the five teams below them in the league standings. With only a five point spread between third place and the bottom of the conference, the league battles will be intense the rest of the way. With one conference win separating the Huskies and Pioneers this should be a competitive weekend of hockey with a lot on the line.
SHOULD COLLEGE HOCKEY FOLLOW THE LEAD OF ELLEN DEGENERES?
Wait, what? Ellen DeGeneres and hockey? Read on and you’ll get my connection. There’s a lot of talk these days about college hockey attendance. If you go to as many rinks as I do it’s obvious there’s a drop off in “in seat” attendance at most of the venues around the country. However, don’t confuse that with a drop in interest in the sport. According to College Hockey News, average attendance per game this season ranges from 327 on the low end to 11,228 on the high end and average attendance is down. These statistics come from box scores so they may or may not be totally reliable. College hockey remains a niche sport and of those that follow college sports, about 4-5% of those surveyed follow college hockey according to Statistica. As a comparison, close to 40% of those follow college football. MORE HERE
GOPHERS UPEND THE HUSKIES IN MARIUCCI CLASSIC FINALE
Minneapolis, MN – It’s funny how things go. On Saturday, the Huskies torched college hockey’s top defense and top-rated goaltender in a 7-2 win. On Sunday, in the championship game of the Mariucci Classic, the Huskies struggled to score against the 50th ranked defense and 43rd ranked goaltender. It was almost as if the uniforms of the Mavericks and Gophers were switched for the weekend. The Gophers exploded for three second period goals and the Huskies offense went dormant as the host Gophers captured the championship game of the Mariucci Classic by a 4-1 (EN) score.
OKABE AND HUSKIES THROTTLE #2 MINNESOTA STATE 7-2
Minneapolis, MN – With as much skill as first-year forward Zach Okabe has it was bound to happen. The first-year forward who racked up 53 goals and 115 points in two seasons in the Alberta Junior Hockey League had zero points entering Friday’s contest with #2 ranked MSU Mankato. He ended the game tied for fourth in team scoring after a stupendous performance against college hockey’s top goaltender, Dryden McKay who entered the game with a ridiculous .955 SV% and 1.09 GAA. Okabe, the youngest player on the ice at just 18, beat McKay four times ending his night just 7:17 into the second period. It was a tough night overall for the Mavericks who yielded seven goals after entering the contest as college hockey’s #1 defense allowing just 1.28 goals per game. The 7-2 win lifted the Huskies to the championship game of the Mariucci Classic against former SCSU coach Bob Motzko and his Golden Gophers who defeated Bemidji State 5-2 (2 EN goals). MORE HERE
HUSKIES FACE MSU IN MARIUCCI CLASSIC
St. Cloud, MN – When the Beavers, Huskies, Gophers and Mavericks meet in the Mariucci Classic this weekend, you might not be aware of all the coaching connections to St. Cloud State University hockey at play. It gets rather convoluted, so let’s see if we can lay out some of the SCSU Hockey ancestry. MORE HERE
MARIUCCI CLASSIC COULD FEATURE BRODZINSKI VS BRODZINSKI
Blaine, MN – Round one featured Michael and Jonny. Round two could shape up to be Easton and Bryce. At least that’s what Mike and Kathy Brodzinski, parents of the four aforementioned siblings are hoping for, as the Gopher and Husky men’s hockey teams prepare for next weekend’s Mariucci Classic Dec. 28-29 in Minneapolis. For round two’s matchup to happen, the Gophers would have to defeat Bemidji State, while the Huskies would have to knock off Minnesota State-Mankato in Friday’s opening round of this year’s Classic. They could also face each other in the third-place game, if both teams lose their opening-round game. MORE HERE
HUSKIES RALLY THEN FALL IN OVERTIME 4-3 TO OMAHA
St. Cloud, MN – In the waning moments of a tie game on Saturday, the Huskies had a sweep clearly within their grasp. Kevin Fitzgerald was poised to bury a wraparound with Omaha goaltender Isaiah Saville seemingly out of position by about two and a half feet. But, as Saville did all weekend, he found a way to make a big save by kicking his pad towards the post and thwarting the game-winning goal by Fitzgerald. Ironic, as Saville, who was recently named to the preliminary roster for the USA World Junior Team was in an odd way auditioning for Brett Larson, an assistant coach for that same team. Saville made the save, the game went to overtime and the Mavericks snapped a ten-game losing streak to the Huskies by scoring eleven seconds into the overtime session. MORE HERE
NOT PERFECT BUT CLOSE AS HUSKIES TOP OMAHA 4-1
St. Cloud, MN – After a highly successful road trip last weekend, the big question was whether the Huskies could carry that momentum back home vs the Omaha Mavericks. It may not have been a perfect game but darn close as the Huskies battled to a 4-1 win at the Herb Brooks National Hockey Center on Friday, December 13. A cast of usual suspects scored three of the four goals, Micah Miller added his first and David Hrenak was 20 seconds shy of a shutout as the Huskies won their third consecutive conference game. The team will try to close out the 2019 conference schedule with a win and sweep of the series in the rematch on Saturday. MORE HERE
HUSKIES VS REDHAWKS PART THREE
St. Cloud, MN – It’s been a work in progress. The early season has been full of frustration for sure. There’s been six overtime games including yielding a two-goal third period in Bemidji to settle for a 2-2 overtime tie on October 13. An unimaginable game in Marquette, MI with two consecutive third period major penalties culminating in the disintegration of a three-goal lead in less than eight minutes in a 3-3 overtime tie. Two one-goal losses (EN) on the road in Grand Forks to #2 ranked North Dakota including a Saturday overtime loss. Yet, the ever positive Brett Larson insists on improvement each week, injecting first-year players into the lineup at key moments and preaching patience. After all, with a few breaks here and there, his team which consists of ten first-year players and six of them logging regular ice time could just as well be 9-5-0 vs 4-6-4 overall. MORE HERE
SCSU SWEEPS MIAMI 5-3 WITH THIRD PERIOD OUTBURST
Oxford, OH – Senior Nick Poehling had a big night with a goal and two assists and the Huskies matched their highest offensive output of the season in a 5-3 win and sweep of the Miami RedHawks at Goggin Ice Arena in Oxford, OH on Saturday, December 7th. A three goal outburst in the third period broke open a one goal SCSU lead as they improved their overall record to 4-6-4 and conference record to 2-4-0. It was scoring by committee as the Huskies had five different players hit the scoreboard in a hard-earned and well-deserved win. MORE HERE
LATE GOAL NETS 2-1 WIN FOR HUSKIES OVER MIAMI
Oxford, OH – Luke Jaycox scored the game-winning goal with 25 seconds remaining in regulation to lift the Huskies to a 2-1 win over the Miami RedHawks at the Goggin Ice Center in Oxford, OH on Friday, December 6. The win was their first conference victory of the season and rewarded the team for a solid effort on the road. It wasn’t an easy result with the Huskies having to fend off four Miami power play opportunities including two in the final period. The Huskies now look to the rematch on Saturday as they attempt to earn their first sweep of the season. MORE HERE
SCSU FACES MIAMI IN KEY ROAD CONFERENCE SERIES
St. Cloud, MN – After a one-week respite, the unranked Huskies hit the road for a conference series with the Miami RedHawks on December 15/16. After this series, the Huskies will have played 6 of their last 8 games on the road including a trip to Northern Michigan and a very competitive series in Grand Forks against the UND Fighting Hawks. The Huskies will have one remaining conference series with Omaha on home ice before the Mariucci Classic in Minneapolis on December 28/29. Then they will be on break until until January 10th when they face Denver on the road. Winless in the conference thus far, they will have four games to get in the win column before they enter the second half of the season. However, it won’t be easy as the Huskies have had difficulty in Oxford with a 4-7-2 record vs the RedHawks at the Goggin Ice Center. MORE HERE
HUSKIES FALL 2-1 IN OVERTIME TO NORTH DAKOTA
Grand Forks, ND – The Huskies have had six of their twelve games go to overtime thus far this season. On Saturday, in the rematch with #5 ranked North Dakota they entered the extra session again only to fall 2-1 to the league leading Fighting Hawks. UND leading scorer Jordan Kawaguchi scored the game-winner with 1:19 left in the session to capture a weekend sweep of the Huskies. The win stretched their unbeaten sreak to nine games and improved their conference record to 5-0-1 and 17 points ahead of the winless Huskies in the standings. It was in fact a good outing for the Huskies who probably shouldn’t have been in this position after getting into serious penalty trouble in the second period. David Hrenak had an excellent outing as did Jack Ahcan who logged lots of ice time and scored the lone SCSU goal. But, in the end, it was another frustrating result for a team going through some growing pains. MORE HERE
HUSKIES EDGED BY #5 NORTH DAKOTA 4-2
Grand Forks, ND – The 5th ranked University of North Dakota salted away this NCHC battle with an empty net goal with 1:02 remaining on Friday. Until that time, despite being outshot badly, the last-place Huskies had every reason to believe they could upend the Fighting Hawks. Down by a goal entering the final session, they hung in there despite being outshot 15 to 4 in the period but simply couldn’t generate enough offense to steal the Friday night contest from UND. The end result was the Huskies third straight conference loss and three games into the conference season, already find themselves 14 points behind league leader North Dakota. MORE HERE
HUSKIES FACE STRONG CHALLENGE IN ROAD TRIP TO GRAND FORKS
St. Cloud, MN – Two games into the conference season, there’s no need to panic for the Huskies. But, after getting swept on home ice by the Colorado College Tigers last weekend, the Huskies would sure like to right the ship on their road trip to Grand Forks to face current conference leader University of North Dakota. Selected team statistics for the Huskies are downright ugly compared to the Fighting Hawks who are top-ten in nearly every team category. With an 8-1-2 start and coming off a five-point road weekend vs one of the league favorites in Denver, the UND faithful are pretty sky-high about a team that has missed the NCAA playoffs for two straight years. Compound that with the typically raucous environment at Ralph Engelstad Arena and the last place Huskies have a huge challenge ahead of them. MORE HERE
COLORADO COLLEGE COMPLETES SWEEP OF HUSKIES 5-2
St. Cloud, MN – Fans of St. Cloud State University Hockey have been treated to a lot of success the last several seasons at the Herb Brooks National Hockey Center. Not so in the early going this season as the Huskies have now lost 4 of 6 games after the Colorado College Tigers completed a weekend sweep with a 5-2 win on Saturday, November 16. They fell behind early and never closed the lead to closer than two goals while being swept for the first time at home by the Tigers in close to a decade. Despite cleaning up their act on the penalty kill, defensive play continued to be sketchy at best as they fell to 0-2-0 in conference play. MORE HERE
CC TIGERS POWER PAST SCSU 4-2
St. Cloud, MN – To say the Huskies penalty kill needs resuscitation might be an understatement. Nine games into the season they are 19 for 30 for a penalty kill success ratio of 63.33% placing them nearly dead last in the country. On Friday, their opponents power play did them in again, as the Colorado College Tigers scored three times on the man-advantage in a 4-2 win at the Herb Brooks National Hockey Center. Last Friday, they yielded three third period power play goals to Northern Michigan in a 3-3 overtime tie. On this night, after rallying for two goals in the second period to tie the contest, they allowed their 11th power play goal of the year at 10:47 of period three to give the Tigers the one-goal advantage they never conceded in capturing game one of the weekend series. The loss gave the Huskies an 0-3-2 record on Friday and their third loss at home after nary losing a game at the HBNHC last season. MORE HERE
HUSKIES BEGIN CONFERENCE PLAY HOSTING CC TIGERS
St. Cloud, MN – The Huskies are one of the last two NCHC teams (Omaha the other) to finally begin conference play for the 2019-20 season as they host the Colorado College Tigers at the HBNHC this weekend. Both teams enter the series with records at or below .500 and in an unusual start for the Huskies they have tied 50% of the games they have played thus far. The Huskies begin a stretch of eight conference games before finishing off the first half of the season in the Mariucci Classic in Minneapolis on December 28/29. SCSU holds a huge all-time series advantage over the Tigers since joining the NCHC and they look to begin the conference season with a successful weekend.
HUSKIES EARN KEY 5-4 OVERTIME WIN OVER NORTHERN MICHIGAN
Marquette, MI – Granted, there are some things not to like about the 2019-20 version of the Huskies this weekend. But, the bottom line is they went on the road to a tough venue and left Saturday night with an overtime tie and an overtime win. It’s a learning experience for many of the players in the early season and the Huskies coaching staff is willing to allow these youngsters to play through mistakes in order to improve. Coach Larson told me “the only way to gain poise under pressure is through experience.” On Saturday, they went from dominating the game with a 4-1 lead in period two to hanging on with the game tied at 4-4 in the final session. Ultimately, the team pulled together and found a way to win on the road in the overtime session by a 5-4 score over a strong Northern Michigan Wildcats team. MORE HERE
CRAZY ENDING SALVAGES 3-3 TIE FOR WILDCATS VS HUSKIES
Marquette, MI – It’s all a matter of perspective. On this night, a 3-3 overtime tie with the #16 Northern Michigan Wildcats felt like a loss. To the Wildcats it was a win. Down for the count and trailing 3-0 late in the third period, the Wildcats were gifted two five-minute major penalties with slightly over eight minutes remaining in regulation and rallied for three goals to salvage a 3-3 tie with the Huskies at the Berry Events Center on Friday, November 8. MORE HERE
HUSKIES RETURN TO UP FOR WEEKEND VS NMU WILDCATS
St. Cloud, MN – After a six-year hiatus, the Huskies and Wildcats renewed their competition last season in St. Cloud. SCSU returns the favor in their first return to Marquette, MI since October of 2011. This season, it’ll be the unranked Huskies that are underdogs in this non-conference series vs the #16 ranked Wildcats. The competition between these teams spans over 30 years going back to the days when the Huskies were competing as an independent and first played the Wildcats at Lakeview Arena in Marquette, MI in 1987. The Huskies welcomed the Wildcats to the newly opened National Hockey Center in 1989 and the teams competed for seven season in the WCHA until the Wildcats departed for the Central Collegiate Hockey Association in 1997. The teams have met 11 times since then with the most important game a 4-3 two-overtime win by SCSU in the NCAA West Regional at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul on 3/26/2010. It should be another intense weekend of college hockey. MORE HERE
SCSU AND PRINCETON BATTLE TO 5-5 TIE
St. Cloud, MN – Kudos to the folks doing the box score statistics for the rematch between the SCSU Huskies and the Princeton Tigers on Saturday, November 2. This game had everything – 16 penalties for 43 minutes, 14 total power play opportunities, a hat trick, a five minute major and game misconduct, 5 hooking penalties, 3 slashing penalties, a game lead that changed hands five times and an overtime session. And, it was all compressed into 2 hours and 33 minutes with an outcome that was anyone’s guess until the final horn sounded. When the dust finally settled, the Tigers and Huskies skated to a 5-5 overtime draw. The Princeton coaching staff obviously thrilled with a road win and tie at a normally tough venue for visitors and the Huskies staff finding relief in at least salvaging a tie on Saturday night. MORE HERE
FERLAND BACKSTOPS PRINCETON TO 5-3 WIN OVER SCSU
St. Cloud, MN – Princeton junior goaltender, Ryan Ferland probably wishes the St. Cloud State Huskies were on the Tigers schedule four times a year. The native of Franklin, Mass. has faced the Huskies three times in his career and is undefeated so far. In 2017, the then freshman stopped 80 of 85 shots in the series against the #1 ranked Huskies earning two overtime ties and was named “First Star of the Game” each night. On Friday in St. Cloud, Ferland did it again, turning aside 31 of 34 shots on goal backstopping the Princeton Tigers to a well-deserved 5-3 victory. For the Huskies, it was a second consecutive Friday miscue, looking at times like they were the team in it’s first game of the season. MORE HERE
PREVIEW: PRINCETON TIGERS OPEN SEASON AT ST. CLOUD STATE
St. Cloud, MN – The Huskies continue their stretch of non-conference play hosting the Princeton Tigers of the ECAC on Friday and Saturday. With the Ivy League schools beginning play three weeks after a number of their league members, the Tigers will take the ice for the first time in the 2019-20 season against the Huskies. After two non-conference games with the Huskies, the Tigers then dive right in to conference play with seven consecutive games against league members. This will be the second trip in team history to St. Cloud with the last visit almost exactly 16 years ago. MORE HERE
SCSU EARNS 2-1 BOUNCE-BACK WIN OVER NORTHEASTERN
St. Cloud, MN – After a frustrating loss to Hockey East’s Northeastern Huskies on Friday, SCSU needed a much better effort Saturday, October 26 to salvage a split and nail down their first win of the season. Maybe it was the unveiling of the Herb Brooks statue in the plaza outside the building in a pre-game ceremony that willed this team to a successful evening on the ice. Whatever it was, this was the polar opposite of the team that hit the ice on Friday. Dominating the NU Huskies in the first period, they set the tone with a gritty, blue collar effort that lasted the bulk of the sixty minutes and earned SCSU a hard-earned bounce-back 2-1 win in the rematch of this non-conference series. MORE HERE
NORTHEASTERN IMPRESSES IN 4-1 WIN OVER SCSU
St. Cloud, MN – After watching film of the Northeastern Huskies earlier this week head coach Brett Larson told me this weekends Hockey East opponent was fast and skilled and that sophomore forward Tyler Madden was an elite player. He felt one of the keys to success this weekend was to shut down the line centered by Madden. The NU Huskies were indeed skilled and fast and Madden was a dfference maker. Madden scored twice including the game-winning goal to lead the 11th ranked NU Huskies to a 4-1 non-conference win at the Herb Brooks National Hockey Center on Friday, October 25. The win improved Northeastern’s record to 4-0-1 and allowed them to hand SCSU their first loss at the Herb since a 3-2 overtime loss in the NCHC quarterfinals on March 10, 2018 to the Miami RedHawks. MORE HERE
NORTHEASTER(N) BLOWS IN FOR WEEKEND SERIES WITH SCSU
St. Cloud, MN – The Pairwise doesn’t discriminate. The ranking model which is deadly accurate in predicting teams for the NCAA tournament places just as much weight on an early season win as a late season win. This weekend, two teams whose Pairwise should benefit from a successful performance on the ice face-off in a return engagement at the Herb Brooks National Hockey Center on Friday and Saturday, October 25 and 26. MORE HERE
THIRD PERIOD RALLY BY BEMIDJI NETS A 2-2 TIE WITH THE HUSKIES
Bemidji, MN – On Friday, the BSU Beavers suffered through what was described by coach Serratore as a “self-inflicted” breakdown in the third period leading to an unlikely four-goal comeback by SCSU in a eventual 4-4 overtime tie. In the rematch on Saturday, the Beavers got a bit of redemption as they forged a third period two-goal rally to earn a 2-2 overtime tie. The bottom line was two very entertaining games and depending on the viewpoint a symbolic win each night after the comebacks by each teams fan base. For an early season non-conference contest, both teams coaches surely felt they gained some valuable game experience and completed the weekend without a loss on their record. MORE HERE
EPIC COMEBACK BY HUSKIES EARNS 4-4 TIE WITH BEMIDJI STATE
Bemidji, MN – This was a tale of three periods at the Sanford Center in Bemidji on Friday, October 11. In-state rivals with an abundance of new faces battled for 65 minutes to a 4-4 draw in front of an announced crowd of 3500. A tactical first period saw a total of 14 shots on goal – 9 by the Huskies and 5 by the Beavers in a period with a lot of north/south hockey and relatively few whistles. The Beavers survived two first period penalties after the midway point of the period as the Huskies found it difficult to get any traction on the man-advantage and the period ended in a 0-0 scoreless tie. MORE HERE
HUSKIES FACE BEMIDJI STATE IN NORTH COUNTRY BATTLE
St. Cloud, MN – The two-time regular season NCHC champion St. Cloud State University Huskies make the short trip to Bemidji to face the BSU Beavers in a non-conference matchup on Friday and Saturday. This begins a string of eight games of the non-conference variety before the Huskies start NCHC league action on November 15th vs Colorado College at home. The Beavers were pegged to finish third in their conference in the preseason coaches poll while the Huskies were voted by the media to finish fifth in their league. Both teams have yet to play a regular season contest in the 2019-20 season. MORE HERE
TEVOR ZINS BRINGS MORE LOCAL FLAVOR TO SCSU HOCKEY
Story by Robert LaPlante
St. Cloud, MN – Trevor Zins is one of 10 freshmen that made their college hockey debut for St. Cloud State in a 4-2 home win Oct. 6 over the University of Alberta. Among this year’s rookies, Zins is one of only four that played high school hockey in Minnesota. A 2016 graduate of St. Michael-Albertville High School, he played two varsity seasons with the Knights, where he accumulated 10 goals and 29 assists in 52 games between his sophomore and junior seasons. MORE HERE
HUSKIES POWER PAST ALBERTA IN SEASON OPENING EXHIBITION
St. Cloud, MN – Season opening exhibition games are generally meant to shake off the rust and do a little experimenting with the lineup. Facing a team that was already into it’s 10th game of the season, the Huskies scored four power play goals – two by junior Easton Brodzinski and dispatched the University of Alberta Golden Bears by a 4-2 score at the Herb Brooks National Hockey Center.
AHCAN ANNOUNCES COMMITMENT TO ST CLOUD STATE UNIVERSITY
St. Cloud, MN – Grant Ahcan, the brother of current SCSU captain Jack Ahcan announced his commitment to the Huskies via Twitter on October 5. Ahcan announced “excited to announce my commitment to play college hockey at St. Cloud State university! Couldn’t have done it without the support of my family, friends, and coaches. Can’t wait to be a Husky.” Ahcan, an ’02 birth date is a 5’9″ 150 pound forward who will be a senior at Burnsville, MN High School this season. He’s been a varsity player since the 2017-18 season but really came into his own as a junior during the most recent season. Ahcan netted 17 goals and added 22 assists in 26 games (including playoffs). MORE HERE
SCSU HUSKIES BEGIN 2019-20 SEASON WITH EXHIBITION VS ALBERTA
St. Cloud, MN - The Huskies begin the season with an exhibition vs the University of Alberta Golden Bears on Sunday, October 6. MORE HERE
FORMER HUSKIES IMPACT OPENING NIGHT NHL ROSTERS
St. Cloud, MN – The National Hockey League’s 4 p.m. CT deadline on Tuesday has passed for teams to submit its 23-man roster for the opening of the 2019-20 season and seven former Huskies have made opening night rosters. The following is a run-down of those former Huskies, their team and the years they suited up for SCSU MORE HERE
SCSU HUSKIES CARRY NCHC SUCCESS INTO 2019-20 SEASON
St. Cloud, MN- When the National Collegiate Hockey Conference was formed on July 9, 2011 St. Cloud State University was not one of the six founding members. It was not until late September of that year that SCSU along with Western Michigan University accepted invitations to become the 7th and 8th members of the league. To say that St.Cloud State has been a key member of the conference would be a gross understatement. After winning the MacNaughton Cup in their final year in the Western Collegiate Hockey Association, the Huskies nary missed a beat winning the Penrose Cup in the inaugural season of the NCHC. Heading into the 2019-20 season they’ve won the Penrose three of the six years and have racked up more league wins (88) than any other league member. Denver and North Dakota (81) and reigning National Champion UMD (76) follow next in line. MORE HERE
HUSKY PUCK DROP BREAKFAST INTRODUCES 2019-20 SEASON TO FANS
St. Cloud, MN – The weather may have been dreary outside the Herb Brooks National Hockey Center but the enthusiasm and excitement in the packed Husky Den was obvious as SCSU Athletics hosted their second annual Husky Puck Drop Breakfast on Saturday, September 21st. With SCSU President Robbyn Wacker and SCSU Athletic Director Heather Weems in attendance to greet the fans, the SCSU Hockey coaches, staff and captains welcomed the fans and led the introduction to the 2019-20 season.
TALENTED SCSU ROOKIE CLASS TO SEIZE OPPORTUNITY IN 2019-20
St. Cloud, MN – Let’s face it, regardless of the infusion of talent in 2019-20 for the St. Cloud State University Men’s Hockey team it’s still going be a rebuild on offense. A combination of graduating seniors and early departures took a toll on one of college hockey’s top offenses. They lose their top five scorers ( Patrick Newell, Blake Lizotte, Robby Jackson, Ryan Poehling and Jimmy Schuldt) and a total of 213 points including 77 goals and 136 assists. The team mopped up on NCHC post-season awards with four first team selections in the now departed Newell, Poehling, Lizotte and Schuldt and individual awards to Schuldt as NCHC Player of the Year/ Defensive Defenseman of the Year and Patrick Newell named NCHC Forward of the Year. These two were also named first team All-American and were finalists for the Hobey Baker Award. Sophomore Blake Lizotte was named second team All-American. MORE HERE
TOP FINNISH PLAYER MIETTINEN COMMITS TO HUSKIES
St. Cloud, MN – Since the 2012-13 hockey season, the St. Cloud State University Huskies have had a Finnish player on their roster each season. That trend will continue into the immediate future with the recent verbal commitment of speedy, left-shooting forward Veeti Miettinen and incoming SCSU freshman forward Jami Krannila. The 5’9″ 160 native of Espoo, Finland recently skated with the U20 Blues in the Jr. A SM-Liiga League where it appears he’ll log another season before joining the Huskies. He’s also built quite a resume in International play for Finland since 2016 having participated on the U16 to U20 teams including the World Junior Championships in 2019 and the World Under 17 Championships in 2017. In all, in international play, Miettinen has compiled 15 goals and 21 assists for 36 points in 56 games. Last season in the SM-Liiga U20 league, he produced 27 goals and 34 assists for 61 points in 48 games – impressive as he was one of the younger players in the league. Miettinen will turn 18 in September. MORE HERE
HOCKEY PERFORMANCE CENTER FINISHES ON BUDGET AND ON TIME
St. Cloud, MN – In this age of rampant and lavish spending on athletic facilities it’s not unusual to see typical spending in the $50 to $100 million or more range. So, in the whole scheme of things, a project for $600,000 is a tiny construction project. But, you don’t measure the worth of a project by its cost but rather the utility and worth of the project to the user. For St. Cloud State University men’s and women’s hockey, the completion of the Huskies Hockey Performance Center (also referred to as the Strength and Conditioning Center) ranks right up there on the list of priorities. The project which has been bandied about in one form or another for the past decade finally came to fruition with it’s completion this past week. MORE HERE
WALKER AND TEAMMATES GETTING IT DONE IN THE CLASSROOM
St. Cloud, MN – It was quite a year for first-year forward Nolan Walker, the oft-traveled 20 year-old Anchorage, Alaska native. After three seasons at the prestigious Culver Military Academy in Indiana and a season of USHL hockey in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, he attacked his next challenge of Division I hockey at St. Cloud State. And, excel he did, playing for the #1 ranked Huskies who occupied that lofty position for most of the season. Walker finished the season with 8 goals and 19 assists for 27 points. The numbers placed him 8th on the team scoring chart and 16th in NCHC scoring and 2nd in the conference for a rookie only two points behind Taylor Ward of Omaha. His reward was being named to the 2018-19 NCHC All-Rookie team. MORE HERE
UPDATE: FORMER SCSU HUSKIES AND THEIR NHL AGREEMENTS
St. Cloud, MN – Here’s a quick update on some of the movement by former St. Cloud State University players in the National Hockey League. Jonny Brodzinski (2012-15) – as reported here, Brodzinski recently signed a one-year deal with the San Jose Sharks of the NHL. His new deal will take him through 2 July 2, 2020. This transaction reunites him with his brother Michael who was drafted by the Sharks in 2013 and remains in the organization. MORE HERE
SCSU NAMES MACDONALD HEAD WOMENS HOCKEY COACH
St. Cloud, MN – St. Cloud State University Athletics named Steve Macdonald as it’s new Head Coach for women’s hockey at a formal announcement at the Herb Brooks National Hockey Center on Friday, June 21. Macdonald, a current SCSU assistant coach, replaces Eric Rud who announced his resignation from the position on May 13 to accept an assistant coaching job at Miami University.
ROBERTSON CUP CHAMP ROCCO COMMITS TO SCSU
St. Cloud, MN – The Aberdeen Wings recently concluded their 2018-19 season winning the Robertson Cup, signifying the championship of the North American Hockey League. One of the key players for the Wings was forward Thomas Rocco, a 19 year-old forward who lists Midlothian, VA as his home town. On June 1, the 5’9″ 170 pound left-shooting forward announced via twitter that he has committed to play hockey at St. Cloud State University. Rocco announced “Extremely proud to announce my commitment to play hockey and further my education at St. Cloud State University! I want to thank my family, coaches, and teammates for supporting me throughout this journey. Looking forward to the next four years!” MORE HERE
SCSU BOLSTERS DEFENSE WITH ADDITION OF DEFENSEMAN TREJBAL
St. Cloud, MN – We’re doing a little catch up on this late commitment for 2019 that was originally announced in late March. However, I thought the Husky faithful might want a little more information on defenseman, Ondrej Trejbal. The 20 year-old 6’3″ 192 pound left shooting defenseman committed to the Huskies in late March with the expectation that he will arrive on campus in St. Cloud for the 2019-20 season. On announcing the commitment of Trejbal to the Huskies, coach Dave Boitz noted “Ondrej is an incredibly talented offensive defenseman and has been a driving, positive force on our team. Off the ice, Ondrej is an outstanding human being and the Wilderness family is beyond excited to see him continue his journey at the top-notch program St. Cloud has to offer. ” MORE HERE
CENTERICEVIEW 2019-20 SCSU ROAD TRIP RANKING
I’ve been a St. Cloud State University hockey road warrior since 1986 and have been to nearly every hockey venue the team has visited since. As such, it probably gives me a bit of credibility to compile a list of the top destinations for SCSU hockey fans to attend during the 2019-20 season. Keeping in mind that fans have different travel budgets and tastes my list won’t be suited to every fan. The 2018-19 season would have required the road tripper to dig into the piggy bank as the schedule was loaded with flying trips to such locales as Boston, Pittsburgh and Colorado. The 2019-20 schedule might not dig into the travel budget as much but will require you to load up some miles on your vehicle. There are nine road trips this season and six of them can be done by vehicle. That leaves Denver, Colorado College and Miami the only trips requiring an airline ticket. So with that said, let’s dig into this years top road trip destinations: MORE HERE
CHASE BRAND COMMITS TO ST. CLOUD STATE UNIVERSITY
St.Cloud, MN- The St. Cloud State Huskies added some needed depth at the forward position with the commitment of forward Chase Brand. The 20 year old native of Nevis, MN announced via Twitter on May 8 “Excited to announce I will now be attending St. Cloud State University to play DI college hockey and further my education! Can’t wait to get started!” The 5’10” 160 pound left-shooting forward had previously committed to Miami of the NCHC in February of 2019. MORE HERE
NOTEBOOK: CATCHING UP WITH A BEVY OF FORMER HUSKIES
St. Cloud, MN – One of the top festivals of 15-18 year-old players took place at the Plymouth Ice Center in Plymouth, MN this past week. Due to an aggregation of a number of age groups it’s a top venue for Division I and Division III coaches and scouts to get another gander at players prior to the collegiate coaches departing for league, NCAA and AHCA meeting taking place in Naples, Florida this week. I spent this past Saturday at the event with one of the Division III coaches and had the opportunity to catch up with an impressive number of coaches and former players with connections to St. Cloud State University. It was great to see how well these former Huskies are doing. Here’s a quick run down for those interested. MORE HERE
ROBBER BARONS, WANDERLUST, CRESTFALLEN FANS AND SLOPPY ICE
St. Cloud, MN – It’s been about a month since the 2019 West Regional in Fargo and it’s still a head shaker. After a season lasting 173 days, it took the champions of the Atlantic Conference, American International College sixty minutes to end the season of college hockey’s top-ranked team. Improbable? In the minds of the Husky faithful who saw this team glide through the season undefeated on home ice and lose only five games – absolutely. Even the Vegas odds makers anointed the Huskies a 2-1 favorite to win the national championship as opposed to eventual winner, University of Minnesota-Duluth at 4-1 odds. So, you can’t blame the fans, at least those with short memories, who had already booked flights, lodging and purchased tickets for the Frozen Four in Buffalo. In fact, there were many that saw Friday’s game vs the sixteen-seeded Yellow Jackets not worth blowing a day of vacation or incurring the additional expense of another night in Fargo. “We’ll be there Saturday for the championship game” was the logic. Sure, the number one ranked Huskies were dethroned by sixteen-seed Air Force in 2018 in Sioux Falls and fifteen-seed Ferris State in 2016 at the Xcel Energy Center but logically that couldn’t happen to this team. So, what did happen in Fargo? MORE HERE
2019-20 ST. CLOUD STATE UNIVERSITY MEN'S HOCKEY SCHEDULE
The 2019-20 complete hockey schedule has been released MORE HERE
SCSU FOURSOME NAMED TO 2018-19 AHCA ALL-AMERICAN TEAM
Buffalo, NY – The American Hockey Coaches Association (AHCA) announced it’s 2019 CCM/AHCA All-American teams and it contained four players from St. Cloud State University. The Huskies led the way in the number of players named with two on the West First-Team and two on the West Second-Team. A total of 25 players were selected as All-Americans. Selected from St. Cloud State University were seniors Jimmy Schuldt on defense and Patrick Newell at forward on the West First-Team and sophomore forward Blake Lizotte and junior defense Jack Ahcan were named to the West Second-Team. MORE HERE
ST. CLOUD STATE'S SCHULDT, LIZOTTE MAKE NHL DEBUT IN LA
Los Angeles, CA – Shortly after the end of the magnificant NHL debut of former Husky Ryan Poehling, two more former SCSU players got their taste of the NHL . Only a week removed from the NCAA West Regional hockey tournament in Fargo, ND, it couldn’t have been a greater departure from that venue. Jimmy Schuldt, the three time SCSU captain, NCHC Player of the Year and Hobey Baker Hat Trick Finalist and Blake Lizotte, NCHC All-First Team laced up the skates for the first time at the 18,000 seat Staples Center in downtown LA. MORE HERE
MAGNIFIQUE NHL DEBUT BY ST. CLOUD STATE'S RYAN POEHLING
Montreal, Quebec – You couldn’t have scripted this any better for the NHL debut of former SCSU center Ryan Poehling. A week removed from the NCAA West Regional tournament Poehling dazzled the Montreal faithful at the Bell Centre with a hat trick and shootout goal as the Canadiens earned a 6-5 shootout win over the Toronto Maple Leafs on Saturday, April 6. Despite being eliminated from the playoffs on Friday, the Canadiens gave their fans a glimpse of the future with the successful debut of the 2017 first round choice. Although a rarity to net a hat trick in your first rookie game it’s been done before as Alex Smart accomplished the feat in January of 1943 for Montreal. Most recently, Auston Matthews scored four goals in an October 2016 game for the Toronto Maple Leafs vs the Ottawa Senators. MORE HERE
SCSU'S SCHULDT NAMED HOBEY BAKER HAT TRICK FINALIST
St. Cloud, MN – It’s been quite a week for SCSU’s three-time captain, Jimmy Schuldt who on April 3rd signed an entry-level contract with the Las Vegas Knights of the National Hockey League. On Thursday, April 4th, the Hobey Baker Award Committee announced that Schuldt is a Hobey Baker Hat Trick finalist. Schuldt joins Adam Fox of Harvard University and Cale Makar of the University of Massachusetts as the three finalists for this prestigious award. The winner will be announced on Friday, April 12th at Key Bank Rink in Buffalo, NY. This will coincide with the festivities surrounding the Frozen Four that weekend. The most coveted award in collegiate hockey, the Hobey Baker Award is given to the top NCAA men’s ice hockey player in the nation. Candidates must exhibit strength and character, both on and off the ice, contribute to the integrity of the team, display outstanding skills in all phases of the game and show scholastic achievement and sportsmanship. Candidates must also comply with all NCAA rules, be full-time students in an accredited NCAA college or university, and complete 50% or more of the season. MORE HERE
#16 AIC SCRIPTS 2-1 WIN OVER #1 ST. CLOUD STATE
Fargo, ND – American International head coach Eric Lang was diligent in his preparation to face #1 ranked St. Cloud State University in the NCAA West Regional at Scheels Arena in Fargo, ND. In preparation for Friday’s game he commented “We deserve to be right where we are. It’ll be nice to hunt vs. being the hunted. … The longer this thing goes and the score stays tight, the pressure then shifts. We’ll have to weather some storms. We know that. We want our guys playing free and easy. We want our guys playing confident. This isn’t the time of year to change our tactics. There’s a way the game has to go for us to have success,” Lang said.
Coach Lang was prophetic. The game did go the way he scripted it. In his post-game press conference he commented “We had a script the game had to go a certain way. We had to block 20 shots and give up no more than two odd-man rushes – we had to limit the turnovers and win the neutral zone battles. We did what we had to do to advance. I’m excited for our guys.”
The end result was one of the biggest upsets in NCAA college hockey history. Despite being outshot 34-13 and totally dominated in period three the #31 Pairwise Yellow Jackets from Springfield, MA scored early, followed the “script” and hung on and defeated the top-ranked Huskies by a 2-1 score. The third period shot chart was a clinic in puck possession and domination. A desperate SCSU squad cranked up the pressure with 29 shot attempts, 15 shots on goal including one off the post, another shot landing behind Skog on top of the net and Ryan Poehling fanning on a point-blank opportunity. But, they could only squeeze out one third period goal in suffering only their 6th loss of the season. They conclude 2018-19 with a record of 30-6-3 – one win shy of the school record 31 and fell short of what seemed to be a season of redemption for two earlier losses by this senior class in the first round of the NCAA playoffs.
A sluggish first period of hockey accentuated by what appeared to be less than optimum ice conditions saw the Yellow Jackets take an early lead on a goal by Joel Kocur 6:01 into period one. Kocur drew the puck from the back wall and beat Hrenak with a diligent effort short side between his glove and the post. It was a flat period of hockey for SCSU for the first ten minutes of the period but they began to exert some control over the game as the period progressed. However, shots on goal at period end were dead even at 6-6 and AIC nearly added to their lead at the buzzer on a shot from the point by Luka Maver that got by Hrenak but was clearly after time had expired.
With a 1-0 lead entering period two, the Yellow Jackets continued adhering to their script – clogging the neutral zone, dumping the puck out of the AIC defensive zone at every opportunity and relying on goaltender Skog to ring the puck out along the wall to limit any SCSU puck posession in the AIC zone. But, it was the Yellow Jackets that extended their lead to two on a goal by Brendan Kapcheck with 12:28 remaining in the period. Kapcheck took a shot from the right dot that trickled through the pads and beat Hrenak for a 2-0 lead. SCSU outshot AIC 13-4 for the period but were 0-2 on the man-advantage.
The Third period had the Huskies throwing a lot of rubber at American International goaltender, Zackarious Skog and they finally broke the shutout with a goal by Easton Brodzinski 9:27 into the period. Brodzinski tossed the puck into the front of the net from behind the goal line and it deflected off the Yellow Jackets Shawn McBride for the Huskies first goal of the game. It certainly lit a fire under the Huskies for the balance of the period as they applied intense pressure in the AIC zone outshooting AIC in the period by a 15-3 margin but were unable to get the puck past Skog for the equalizer. Final shots on goal were 34 to 13 SCSU.
“The hardest thing (about this loss) is that this is one of the best group of young men I’ve ever been around and their hearts are ripped out right now and I feel for them.” said coach Larson. “They left it all out at the end and they don’t have anything to hang their heads about. They worked hard all year and we thought we were prepared. We just couldn’t get that second one. We had a lot of belief and trust in each other until the end.
Clearly disappointed Jack Ahcan commented ” We played our hearts out. We were confident something was going to happen. They played a solid game, were well prepared and they moved the puck well and skated well. We were well prepared but it just wasn’t our night.”
David Hrenak stopped 11 of 13 shots on goal in the loss as his record fell to 23-4-2. Zackarious Skog picked up the win for AIC turning aside 32 of 33 shots on goal. His record improved to 20-13-0. The Huskies finally gained some success on the man-advantage in period three going 1-4 for the game while AIC was 0-2.
Stars of the Game: #1 Skog (AIC) #2 Kapcheck (AIC) #3 Kocur (AIC)
American International returns to the ice on Saturday in the West Region Championship game against Denver, a 2-0 winner over Ohio State on Friday.
NCAA TOURNEY BEGINS WITH TOP-RANKED SCSU FACING AIC
St. Cloud, MN – The top-ranked St. Cloud State University Huskies would like to see their season extend for four more games. That places them in the NCAA championship game at the Key Bank Center in Buffalo, NY on April 13 at 7:00 PM CT. But, first things first. The Huskies landed their 14th trip to the NCAA tournament as the #1 seed and will face American International College, the #16 seed. MORE HERE
HUSKIES LOSE DOUBLE OT HEARTBREAKER TO UMD IN CHAMPIONSHIP
St. Paul, MN – In the post-game press conference, an obviously disappointed Brett Larson spoke of how proud he was of his team. When asked if he’d change anything heading into the NCAA tournament he simply responded “I’m not going to re-do anything because I loved our team tonight.” Having to watch the UMD celebration after a 3-2 double overtime loss in the NCHC Frozen Faceoff Championship game he said “It was hard to watch UMD celebrate. It was painful. You set out to achieve a goal and you fall short. Obviously we are disappointed. I loved how our team played. They have nothing to hang their head about.” Jimmy Schuldt was practical in his comments. “we are not invincible” he said. “Credit to them (UMD) for a helluva battle. We need to move on quickly. Lucky for us there is more hockey to be played. Teammate Patrick Newell concurred “this hurts right now but we’ll take it and move on”. MORE HERE
NCHC SHOWCASES HUSKIES VS BULLDOGS IN FROZEN FACEOFF FINAL
St. Paul, MN – What a feather in the cap for the National Collegiate Hockey Conference. The #1 Pairwise Huskies faceoff against the #3 Pairwise UMD Bulldogs in what most certainly could be a national championship matchup. The teams finished first and second in the regular season conference standings and will be carrying the NCHC flag into the NCAA tournament as #1 seeds next weekend along with the Denver Pioneers who will most likely be a #2 or 33 seed. Tonight, in addition to school pride, the two squads will be vying for the Frozen Faceoff Trophy last won by the Bulldogs in 2017 and by the Huskies in 2016. The Huskies also made it to the championship game in 2018 losing to the Denver Pioneers by a 4-1 score. So, sit back and enjoy two of college hockey’s finest teams battle it out on the ice at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul, MN. MORE HERE
HUSKIES DEFEAT TIGERS 5-2 TO ADVANCE TO FROZEN FACEOFF FINAL
St. Paul, MN – Call it entertaining. Call it perplexing at times. The St. Cloud State Huskies NCHC playoff semi-final game vs Colorado College was a good example of where the state of the college hockey game is at currently. With the officials grappling with the use of technology and the rules intent on protecting the safety of the players there were 13 penalties for 56 minutes and video reviews galore at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul on Friday, March 22. With video reviews of each and every goal and a number of the on ice infractions both coaching staffs had to cope with the challenges it presented in this hotly contested game. There were two game misconduct penalties called on key players from each side – Trevor Gooch of CC and Jon Lizotte of SCSU, a 10 minute misconduct to Robby Jackson and nearly every other penalty in the rule book was whistled in a game ultimately won by the Huskies 5-2. In the end, it was the Huskies ability to withstand a five on three advantage by Colorado College for a span of 1:24 and the balance of the major penalty for 3:36 in the third period to hold on for the win.
TWICE AS NICE - NEWELL AND SCHULDT TOP TEN FINALISTS FOR HOBEY
St. Cloud, MN – The Hobey Baker Award committee announced their ten finalists for the 2019 Hobey Baker Memorial Award and it wasn’t a surprise to see SCSU senior defenseman Jimmy Schuldt on the list. However, somewhat out of left field was the announcement that SCSU senior forward Patrick Newell was also included as a finalist. From a performance standpoint during the 2018-19 season it was a glaring omission not to have Newell as a member of the original nominated group that was presented for fan voting. Credit to the committee for correcting this omission and including one of college hockey’s top performers in this prestigious list of finalists. MORE HERE
TOP-RANKED HUSKIES FACE TIGERS IN PURSUIT OF FF TROPHY
St. Cloud, MN – The top-ranked St. Cloud State University Huskies are looking to pursue their second Frozen Faceoff Championship since they last won the trophy in March of 2016 with a 3-1 win over UMD. Current players Jimmy Schuldt, Robby Jackson, Jon Lizotte, Patrick Newell and Jacob Benson all participated in that game. Mikey Eyssimont scored the game-winning goal in each of the Huskies games to take tourney MVP. The Huskies will face the Colorado College Tigers at 4:05 PM CT in the first game of the Frozen Faceoff at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul on Friday, March 22. By virtue of winning the Penrose Cup and winning their quarterfinal series, the Huskies are the #1 seeded team for the tournament. Colorado College finished sixth in the final NCHC standings and is the #4 seed after defeating Western Michigan on Monday night in the NCHC quarterfinals by a score of 3-2. The Huskies faced the Tigers four times during the 2018-19 season with the Huskies carrying a 3-0-1 record vs Colorado College. SCSU defeated the Tigers 5-3 and 2-1 in Colorado Springs on November 2-3 and earned a 2-2 tie and 5-4 overtime win on February 8-9. The tie on February 8th was the only game which the Huskies did not win this season at the Herb Brooks National Hockey Center. MORE HERE
HUSKIES TO FACE COLORADO COLLEGE FRIDAY IN FROZEN FACEOFF
St. Cloud, MN – The St. Cloud State University Huskies will face the Colorado College Tigers at 4:05 PM CT in the first game of the Frozen Faceoff at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul on Friday, March 22. By virtue of winning the Penrose Cup and winning their quarterfinal series, the Huskies are the #1 seeded team for the tournament. Colorado College finished sixth in the final NCHC standings and is the #4 seed after defeating Western Michigan on Monday night in the NCHC quarterfinals by a score of 3-2.
FROZEN FACEOFF BOUND HUSKIES SWEEP MIAMI 6-3
St. Cloud, MN – How sweet it is. The #1 Huskies finished off the Miami RedHawks in two games in the NCHC quarterfinals to treat their fans to a date in St. Paul at the Frozen Faceoff next weekend. It wasn’t easy but as they’ve displayed all season when their back appears to be against the wall they shift their game into a different gear to bury teams in the third period. Again, on Saturday, the Huskies found themselves battling to a draw early in period three only to splurge for three goals in the final thirteen minutes to capture a 6-3 win at the Brooks Center. It continued an unbeaten streak of 12 games and closed out an entire season of 18 games (17-0-1) without a loss on home ice. The scoring by committee continued with five different players scoring and Easton Brodzinski the head of the table with two goals, one assist and seven shots on goal. The two goals gave Brodzinski 15 for the year surpassing his 2017-19 tally by a goal. Sam Hentges also had a three-point night with the game-winning goal and two assists. Robby Jackson, who was ignored in the NCHC nominations for individual awards this past week netted his 17th goal of the season while Jimmy Schuldt, who piled up the nominations added his 10th goal and another nominee Blake Lizotte scored his 14th. While the RedHawks saw their 2018-19 season end, the Huskies now look forward to the NCHC Frozen Four and a contest with either the Denver Pioneers who ended North Dakota’s season in two games or Colorado College should the Tigers win their series vs Western Michigan. That result may not be known until Monday. Although game times have not been published it’s quite likely the Huskies would chose to have the early game at the Xcel Energy Center on Friday, March 22nd. MORE HERE
HUSKIES NAIL DOWN GAME ONE VS MIAMI 5-2
St. Cloud, MN – The eighth-seeded Miami RedHawks pushed hard but were unable to overcome a strong third period by the SCSU Huskies dropping game one of the NCHC quarterfinals 5-2 at the HBNHC on Friday, March 15. The Huskies received scoring from five different players including two third period goals to pull away from the RedHawks in the three goal win. For Miami, it’s either win on Saturday or their season ends for 2018-19. The win continued the Huskies undefeated streak at home this season to seventeen games. A win on Saturday would conclude an undefeated season on home ice and would also send the Huskies to the semi-finals of the NCHC Frozen Faceoff in St. Paul, MN next weekend. MORE HERE
SCSU'S SCHULDT DOMINATES NOMINATIONS FOR NCHC AWARDS
St. Cloud, MN – SCSU senior captain Jimmy Schuldt is about as humble an individual as you’ll find in an athlete. If he wasn’t, he’d had a difficult time putting on his helmet tonight as the #1 ranked Huskies host the Miami RedHawks in the quarterfinals of the NCHC playoffs. A day after being a unanimous choice for the NCHC All-Conference First team Schuldt dominated the board for nominations for NCHC individual awards to be handed out next Thursday in St. Paul prior to the Frozen Faceoff. Add this to his nomination for the Hobey Baker Award for which I’m certain he’ll be a top ten finalist.
HUSKIES BLOW UP NCHC ALL-CONFERENCE TEAMS WITH SIX PLAYERS
Colorado Springs, CO – One day after SCSU first-year players Nick Perbix and Nolan Walker were named to the 2018-19 NCHC All-Rookie team, six more Huskies were named to the 2018-19 NCHC All-Conference First and Second teams. In a conference record, SCSU placed four players on the NCHC All-Conference First team – seniors Patrick Newell and Jimmy Schuldt were unanimous picks and they were joined by junior Ryan Poehling and sophomore Blake Lizotte. The other additions to the team were UMD Bulldog defenseman, Scott Perunovich and goaltender Hunter Shepard. MORE HERE
NCHC PLAYOFFS BEGIN AS SCSU FACES MIAMI...AGAIN
St. Cloud, MN – The National Collegiate Hockey Association playoffs commence this weekend and the top-ranked SCSU Huskies will host a team that gave them fits in last years quarterfinals. The Miami RedHawks once again travel to St. Cloud with one last opportunity to salvage a disappointing season finishing as the #8 seed for the playoffs. As many of you may recall, the Huskies earned a convincing 5-2 win in game one last year only to fall behind by a two-goal margin in game two and despite a two-goal comeback ultimately lost in overtime 3-2. Game three saw a repeat of the previous contest with Miami jumping out to a 2-0 first period lead and extending this lead to 3-1 early in period three. Once again it required a comeback effort by the Huskies with Patrick Newell getting the game-winner in overtime to send the Huskies to the NCHC Frozen Faceoff in St. Paul. Therein lies the challenge. The RedHawks will travel 750 miles to St. Cloud with one last gasp of hope to extend their season.
WALKER AND PERBIX NAMED TO NCHC ALL-ROOKIE TEAM
Colorado Springs, CO – The National Collegiate Hockey Conference unveiled it’s 2018-19 All Rookie team on March 12 and it included two St. Cloud State University players on the team. Nolan Walker (Anchorage, AK) received five first place votes and 17 points and was named to the group of forwards including UMD’s Noah Cates and Omaha’s Taylor Ward. Perbix (Elk River, MN) received four first-place votes and 14 points and was named at defense along with Bryan Yoon of Colorado College.
KUDOS HUSKY FANS - YOU DESERVE A STANDING "O"
St. Cloud, MN- The #1 ranked Husky hockey team had no trouble filling the seats this past weekend vs #3 ranked University of Minnesota-Duluth. Announced crowds for the Friday/Saturday series was 5135 and 5550 respectively. It should be easy to fill the seats when you have the number one team in college hockey eh? Yes and no. There were certainly a few reasons to have sparse crowds this weekend. First, the Huskies had the Penrose Cup wrapped up two weeks ago and really didn’t have a whole lot on the line this weekend. They already knew they were hosting the first round of the NCHC playoffs at home and are a “lock” for their 13th appearance in the NCAA tourney. Second, local high school team St. Cloud Cathedral was making an appearance in the MSHSL tournament at the Xcel Energy Center and was in the championship game on Saturday. Finally, the weather experts had been beating on us all week about the impending storm on Saturday. With the SCSU hockey team drawing from an area about sixty miles in radius from St. Cloud and about half the fans base from outside St. Cloud, that was assumed to have an effect. Well, the fans showed up despite the fact that students were on spring break and it was probably the most boisterous crowd of the year. Heck, even SCSU captain Jimmy Schuldt was impressed. “The biggest part of tonight was how great the fans were. The building was packed and obviously there was a snow storm outside and there was a really good excuse to stay at home and watch on TV. But, they came out to support us. That will be one of my fondest memories looking back.” Even UMD radio play-by-play announcer Bruce Ciskie took notice and commented on Twitter “Great crowds this weekend, really enjoyed calling those games even though I spent half of tonight watching road conditions” MORE HERE
HUSKIES SWEEP #3 BULLDOGS WITH 4-3 WIN
St. Cloud, MN – If you’ve been a loyal follower of the St. Cloud State University Huskies this season you realize what a special year it has been. If you are a casual follower be assured you may never see a season like this again. With the sweep of the #3 ranked UMD Bulldogs the Huskies accomplished a rarity. They’ve gone sixteen regular season games at home without a loss. To be exact, they finished the regular season with a 15-0-1 record with the only blemish being a 2-2 overtime tie with Colorado College on February 8. The two wins gave SCSU a 19-2-3 record good for first place and their second consecutive Penrose Cup. Opponent UMD finished in second place 19 points behind the Huskies. It certainly wasn’t easy falling behind 2-0 to the Bulldogs early in period two requiring a methodical two period comeback to capture the win against a strong defensive team in UMD. With the final weekend results now in, the Huskies will host the Miami RedHawks next weekend in the quarterfinals of the NCHC Tournament. MORE HERE
HUSKIES TOP #3 BULLDOGS 4-3 IN OT
St. Cloud, MN – This was a classic SCSU vs UMD hockey game. It was competitive, physical and emotional and a controversial call would ultimately dictate the outcome of this game. Nick Perbix was awarded the game-winning goal after an officials review determined the puck that went off his skate was not kicked in giving the Huskies a 4-3 overtime win. But let’s backtrack a little. With the game tied 3-3, Jack Ahcan was assessed a boarding call with 1:30 left in regulation. However, the Bulldogs were unable to capitalize and it appeared they would still have 30 seconds of power play time to start the extra session. But, according to coach Larson, “At the end of regulation T J Jindra (the director of hockey operations) was able to see a view from up top (of an earlier hit by Noah Cates on Jon Lizotte) and we decided with his recommendation to challenge it.” After the review, Cates was assessed a five-minute major for contact to the head and a 10 minute game misconduct. Instead of the Bulldogs having a 30 second man-advantage, the two teams started overtime four on four and then the Huskies were set to finish the rest of the overtime session on the power play. Only 2:46 of the man-advantage was needed as Patrick Newell placed a pass off Perbix’s skate and past Hunter Shepard at 3:16 for the game-winner. “It’s kind of nice” said Larson “because as a head coach I was 0 for 5 in challenges”.
#3 BULLDOGS TO TEST #1 HUSKIES THIS WEEKEND
St. Cloud, MN – After being picked as the favorite to win the Penrose Cup in 2018-19, the defending National Champion UMD Bulldogs can finish no better than seven points shy of the SCSU Huskies in the regular season NCHC conference standings. Regardless, that’ll take nothing away from the competitive spirit of this weekends series between the Bulldogs, currently in second place and thirteen points behind the #1 ranked Huskies. ” We know how they play. It’ll be great hockey” said coach Brett Larson. ” These are two teams that don’t like each other.I want to beat them more than anybody” Larson said with a grin. “I think that’s fun. ” For the Huskies, there is nothing more they can do to position themselves for the NCHC quarterfinals. They’ll play the eighth seed. That leaves Omaha and Miami to sort things out based on their results this weekend. The Mavericks travel to North Dakota and Miami hosts Western Michigan. The Huskies swept the seasons series and are 4-0-0 vs Omaha and are 2-0-2 vs Miami. The Bulldogs, on the other hand, could fall to third place depending on this weekends results. Denver is currently four points behind the Bulldogs and face Colorado College. Fourth place Western Michigan cannot catch UMD but could finish ahead of Denver in third place.The bottom line is the Bulldogs could end up hosting Colorado College, Miami or Omaha in the NCHC quarterfinals. And, honestly, I don’t think anyone wants to face Colorado College in order to advance to the Frozen Faceoff the way the Tigers are playing right now. So, beyond competitive bragging rights, the Bulldogs have something to play for this weekend. MORE HERE
SCSU ROLLS TO 8-2 WIN AND SERIES SWEEP AT #10 WESTERN MICHIGAN
Kalamazoo, MI – The #1 ranked Huskies destroyed the senior night celebration at Lawson Arena on Saturday, March 2 routing the #10 ranked Western Michigan Broncos by a 8-2 score. This was the second consecutive Saturday the Broncos have allowed eight goals having been defeated by the identical score by Colorado College last Saturday. Fifteen SCSU players hit the scoreboard with Blake Lizotte leading the squad with two goals and one assist for three points. Seven different players scored for the Huskies as they racked up their most lop-sided win over the Broncos since an 11-1 thrashing on November 14, 2015 at Lawson Arena. The win continued an undefeated streak of eight games and the Huskies have gone 11-1-1 in their last 13 games. The Huskies overall record improves to 25-4-3 overall and 17-2-3 in the conference as they head into the final weekend of the regular season vs second place UMD. MORE HERE
SENIORS RALLY #1 HUSKIES TO COMEBACK WIN 5-4 OVER #10 WMU
Kalamazoo, MI – Chalk this win up to senior leadership. Seniors Robby Jackson, Patrick Newell and Jimmy Schuldt scored four of the Huskies five goals in an exciting 5-4 road comeback win at Lawson Arena in Kalamazoo, MI on March 1st. A keyed up Western Michigan Bronco squad showcased their offense placing the Huskies on their heels and requiring another comeback effort by the #1 ranked Huskies. Statistics don’t lie and it was the Broncos defense, ranked 41st and their power play, ranked 30th that failed them in this game. Easton Brodzinski, who has been snake bitten in the scoring department lately, scored his first goal in 10 games going back to the last meeting with the Broncos on January 19th. The win improves the Huskies all-time record at Lawson Arena to 6-0-3. The teams return to action on Saturday in the series finale at 6:05 PM CT. MORE HERE
SCSU BACK ON THE ROAD TO KALAMAZOO TO FACE #10 BRONCOS
St. Cloud, MN- The newly crowned 2018-19 Penrose Cup Champion St. Cloud State University hockey team jumps back into the fire this weekend with a trip to Kalamazoo, MI to face the #10 ranked Western Michigan University Broncos. Don’t expect this to be a hospitable welcome for two reasons: First, the Huskies swept the Broncos in St. Cloud in mid-January and second, the Broncos are looking to get back on track after an embarrassing 8-2 pounding at the hands of Colorado College last Saturday. Obviously, the odds were not great that WMU would overtake the Huskies in the battle for the Penrose but getting dismantled so badly in a crucial game had to hurt. Believe me, the Broncos and their “lunatics” would like nothing better than to inflict a little humility on the Huskies in this battle of top-ten teams bound for the NCAA tourney.
SCSU CAPTURES PENROSE CUP WITH 5-0 WIN AND SWEEP OF OMAHA
Omaha, NE – Two weeks before the end of the regular season and with a 15-2-3 National Collegiate Hockey Conference record the #1 ranked SCSU Huskies captured their second consecutive Penrose Cup and third in the six-year existence of the NCHC. Tabbed second behind the UMD Bulldogs in the pre-season poll to capture the Penrose Cup, the Huskies did not allow for any suspense winning 5-0 Saturday, February 23 at Baxter Arena in Omaha. Combining the SCSU win and Colorado College trouncing Western Michigan 8-2 wrapped up the league title for St. Cloud State University. Despite UMD’s 3-2 win over North Dakota, the Huskies remain 13 points ahead of the Bulldogs with only 12 points left to capture by seasons end. Nevertheless, the Huskies still battle the Broncos and Bulldogs the last two weekends of the season in what should be a playoff atmosphere for both series.
SCSU EARNS ANOTHER ROAD WIN IN OMAHA 4-1
Omaha, NE – The Huskies continued their mastery of the Omaha Mavericks with a convincing 4-1 win at Baxter Arena in Omaha on Friday, February 22. SCSU junior forward Ryan Poehling had a big night scoring twice including the game-winning goal to lead the Huskies attack. Sam Hentges scored the lead off goal for SCSU in the first period and Nick Poehling added another in period two as the Huskies won their 7th straight game in Omaha. MORE HERE
#1 HUSKIES RETURN TO ACTION WITH ROAD TRIP TO OMAHA
St. Cloud, MN – I’ve just returned from an extended vacation so I’m going to have to keep this weekends update brief. After two weeks off, the #1 Huskies should be well-rested and ready for the final six-game push to end the regular season schedule. With the team a ‘lock” for the NCAA tourney, goals to finish the regular season should include winning enough games to remain a number one seed, outlasting UMD and Western Michigan for the Penrose Cup and getting consistent play from the team heading into playoff and tournament play. The NCAA Division One hockey season is perhaps the most lengthy and grueling of all collegiate sports and like any endurance athlete, the team needs to be peaking from a physiological standpoint at the right time. Certainly the two week rest should have allowed the team to recharge and get ready for the final push. This week they start with the Omaha Mavericks, a team the Huskies have dominated in their all-time series. However, the team can’t afford to look ahead of anyone. Despite their struggles, the Mavericks are capable of performing very well on home ice and giving the Huskies a competitive weekend. MORE HERE
SPIRITED RALLY GIVES SCSU A 5-4 WIN OVER CC
St. Cloud, MN – The fans knew it and the team knew it. Never count a team out that has the skill and work ethic of this edition of the Huskies. A spirited rally in the last five minutes of the Saturday rematch with the Colorado College Tigers sent the 4700 fans in attendance bonkers and completed a three goal comeback to finish off the Tigers and capture five out of six conference points on the weekend. Maybe it should have never gotten to this point with the Huskies staking a 2-0 lead in period one. But it did and the #1 ranked Huskies had to deal with it. And did they ever with senior forward Patrick Newell having a hand in all three comeback goals including scoring the game-tying goal with 2:55 remaining in regulation and the game winner 3:53 into the overtime session. He left the ice Saturday with a four point game – two goals and two assists as the Huskies refused to yield their first loss on home ice this season. The win improved their home ice record to 13-0-1 and increased their lead over idle Minnesota-Duluth to 13 points in their chase for the NCHC’s Penrose Cup.
HUSKIES RALLY FOR 2-2 TIE WITH COLORADO COLLEGE
St. Cloud, MN – Colorado College is perhaps the quickest team the Huskies have faced all season. They are no stranger to an Olympic size sheet of ice as the Broadmoor World Arena is also 200 x 100 feet in dimension. There were times in Friday’s game that the Tigers had the Huskies chasing them and the Huskies also found themselves losing more puck battles than they’re used to. In the end, it was the Huskies that had to rally just as they did in Colorado Springs in November to avoid losing to the sixth place Tigers. And, it was the Poehlings that did all the damage on the scoreboard for SCSU. Nick scored the lead off goal, Jack the game-tying goal and Ryan the second overtime goal for the extra league point. The two league points stretched the Huskies conference lead to 10 points over idle Minnesota-Duluth. It also continues the Huskies record of being undefeated on home ice – now 12-0-1 this season at the Herb Brooks National Hockey Center. MORE HERE
CC TIGERS NEXT OBSTACLE FOR #1 SCSU HUSKIES
St. Cloud, MN – With the regular conference schedule winding down, the top-ranked Huskies get a return engagement with the Colorado College Tigers at the Herb Brooks National Hockey Center. They met in early November and the Huskies had a tough time with the Tigers falling behind in both games and facing a very tough goaltender in Alex Leclerc who stopped 64 of 71 shots thrown at him over the weekend. With eight conference games remaining, the Huskies look to continue their winning ways at the HBNHC (12-0-0) before having a bye weekend. They then finish with a road trip to Omaha and a crucial final weekend with second-place Minnesota-Duluth. If the Huskies wish to recapture the Penrose Cup they cannot take their foot off the pedal against a team that has had some good momentum as of late. It should be another exciting NCHC matchup in St. Cloud. MORE HERE
LIZOTTE AND HUSKIES COMPLETE SWEEP OF MIAMI 5-1
St. Cloud, MN – A few weeks ago I wrote about the importance of getting the Huskies two top centermen back in the lineup. Oh what a relief it is to have Ryan Poehling and Blake Lizotte back taking faceoffs for the Huskies. Last night, Ryan Poehling had two goals and two assists to lead top-ranked SCSU to a 5-1 win over the Miami RedHawks. On Saturday, it was Blake Lizotte who took charge scoring twice and adding an assist for a three-point night in another 5-1 win and sweep of the RedHawks. It was a five-point weekend for both Lizotte and Poehling as the Huskies continued their undefeated streak to 12-0-0 at the Herb Brooks National Hockey Center. The win was also their 20th of the season and allowed them to maintain an eight-point lead over Minnesota Duluth in the NCHC conference standings. It was also a night of celebration for Patrick Newell who with his two-point game surpassed the 100 career point mark joining Robby Jackson and Jimmy Schuldt who did so in January. And, for those watching the Pairwise, the win kept the Huskies ranked #1 in this all-important ranking. MORE HERE
POEHLING (AND POEHLING) LEAD HUSKIES TO 5-1 WIN OVER MIAMI
St. Cloud, MN – Through two periods, this was a typical Huskies vs RedHawks battle – close on the scoreboard, physical and lacking a lot of flow. The last meeting two months ago ended in a couple of ties and it appeared this game was trending in that direction. Enter Ryan Poehling, the 19 year-old junior who made a name for himself in the World Junior Tournament racking up the honors including tourney MVP who decided to take over the game. Poehling scored twice in the first eight minutes of period three and put the game out of reach leading the Huskies to a convincing 5-1 win over the struggling RedHawks, now winless in their last thirteen games and loser of .seven straight. Older brother Jack had a brief but effective outing scoring the game’s first goal to give SCSU the early lead and then was sent to the showers being accessed a game misconduct at the expiration of period one. Jimmy Schuldt added his 19th career power play goal and Patrick Newell his team-leading 13th goal of the season. The win sets the Huskies up for a twenty-win season if they can get the job done once again on Saturday. Coupled with a 4-1 UMD loss to CC, the Huskies extended their conference lead to seven points over current second place Western Michigan who defeated Omaha 4-3. MORE HERE
#1 SCSU HOSTS MIAMI THIS WEEKEND
St. Cloud, MN – The top-ranked Huskies enter the final stretch run of ten conference games with two consecutive home series vs Miami and Colorado College. This weekend, they face the struggling RedHawks who may be without their top offensive player and face a head coach that got his hand slapped by the league for conduct during their most recent series with Colorado College. Just another indication of the frustrations of a trying season for the program. The Huskies on the other hand move on after a feisty series with North Dakota and try to recover from a flu bug that had the Huskies out-manned in Saturday’s contest. They’ll be facing a Miami squad that always seems to give the Huskies fits and as a result seem to have added confidence whenever they face SCSU. MORE HERE
NORTH DAKOTA TOPPLES TOP-RANKED SCSU 5-1
Grand Forks, ND – North Dakota responded in a must-win situation to topple the #1 ranked Huskies 5-1 at Ralph Engelstad Arena on Saturday, January 26. With a lineup depleted by the flu bug, the Huskies were missing Mika Ilvonen, Jack Poehling and Robby Jackson and the Fighting Hawks took advantage scoring early in the first period, victimizing David Hrenak for two more goals in the first nine minutes of the second and ending the Huskies hopes for a road sweep in Grand Forks. UND was missing a top player as well, Grant Mismash who was injured in Friday’s game but the scratches for the Huskies required them to submit a lineup that included defensemen, Luke Jaycox and Clark Kuster on the 4th line as forwards. The disruption in the lineup seemed to affect the Huskies with uncharacteristic spotty play and not the usual energy displayed by the team. The team also continues to be without one of their top goal scorers, Kevin Fitzgerald who was injured in the UMD series and will probably be out of the lineup until March. Road sweeps are never easy in the NCHC and the Huskies found that out Saturday in Grand Forks as they faced a focused North Dakota team needing to gain at least a split of the series. On this night, they were the better team. MORE HERE
#1 HUSKIES POWER PAST NORTH DAKOTA 3-1
Grand Forks, ND – You knew it wasn’t going to be easy for the Huskies. A North Dakota team desperate for wins against a top team made a valiant first-period effort but eventually ran out of steam against the #1 ranked SCSU Huskies in a 3-1 loss at Ralph Engelstad Arena in Grand Forks, ND. Starting strong, the Fighting Hawks took an early 1-0 lead on a goal by former Brett Larson recruit, Nick Jones but couldn’t hold up to the relentless attack of the Huskies offense getting only ten shots on goal the final two periods in a key conference game. Without a doubt, UND goaltender, Adam Scheel was the team MVP making numerous outstanding saves giving the offensively challenged Fighting Hawks a chance to steal a game from the Huskies in the third period. SCSU got stronger as the game progressed and by period three outshot UND 16-4 in the period and 36 to 15 for the game. Micah Miller, Patrick Newell and Blake Lizotte (EN) scored for the Huskies who improved to 18-3-2 overall and 10-1-2 in the conference. The win maintained their eight point margin ahead of the UMD Bulldogs who defeated Omaha by a 7-2 score. MORE HERE
#1 SCSU READIES FOR HEATED SERIES WITH NORTH DAKOTA
St. Cloud, MN – During the Brett Larson Radio Show on Monday I made the comment to coach Larson about the brutally cold weather in the forecast for Grand Forks this weekend. Weather reports now project high temperatures to be -8 degrees on Friday. He grinned and responded simply that “we play the game indoors”. Actually, the temperatures may be just the opposite in Engelstad Arena as the Huskies should expect a “heated” series with North Dakota, a team struggling through another sub-par season and currently on the outside looking in from a Pairwise standpoint. Currently situated at #21 in the Pairwise and 5th in the NCHC standings, every game becomes a must win for the Fighting Hawks who have 12 regular season games remaining and are the host of the NCAA West Regional in March in Fargo, ND. Currently 12 points behind the Huskies in the NCHC standings, the Penrose Cup is probably out of reach but with only a 4 point separation with second place UMD and 2 points with Denver and Western Michigan hosting a NCHC playoff series is attainable. However, after the weekend with SCSU, the Fighting Hawks have consecutive road series at Denver and Western Michigan and then return home to face UMD so their playoff status could be sealed by the end of February. Bottom line – North Dakota needs to consider every game a playoff series for the balance of the season. For the Huskies, they need to continue the momentum they attained after their sweep of then #10 Western Michigan this past weekend. As coach Larson told College Hockey News recently “You want to be happy, but all of a sudden it hits you you’re going into North Dakota, one of the toughest places to play in college hockey, We know if we don’t bring our best game, there’s a good chance we’ll get beat. So you don’t have a lot of time to rest on your laurels.” MORE HERE
HUSKIES COMPLETE SWEEP OF #10 WESTERN MICHIGAN BRONCOS
St. Cloud, MN – The #10 ranked Western Michigan Broncos arrived in St. Cloud Thursday four points behind the #2 ranked Huskies and riding a 10 game undefeated streak – the longest current streak in college hockey. They’ll leave the Granite City 10 points behind the Huskies and with a two-game losing streak following a weekend sweep at the hands of the Huskies. Following up a superb performance by David Hrenak and mates on Friday, the Huskies duplicated their dominance of the Broncos in a 5-3 win at the Herb Brooks National Hockey Center on Saturday, January 19th. Once again, two of the latest “usual” suspects led the squad as Micah Miller netted his second goal in as many games and Jack Poehling completed a five-point weekend with another empty net goal. The weekend sweep of college hockey’s hottest team improved SCSU’s conference record to 9-1-2 and overall mark to 17-3-2. And, if you’ve started to pay attention to the Pairwise, the wins pushed the Huskies ahead of Denver and UMass to #1 in the ranking. With twelve regular season games remaining – all conference contests, the Pairwise watching will begin in earnest soon. And, oh by the way, for the water cooler crowd, the Huskies will jump back to #1 in the national polls this Monday. That of course will stoke the fires of the North Dakota Fighting Hawks, the Huskies next opponent in the “unfriendly” confines of Ralph Engelstad Arena next weekend. MORE HERE
GRITTY EFFORT BY HUSKIES YIELDS 3-0 SHUTOUT OF #10 BRONCOS
St. Cloud, MN – It may not have been a perfect game but it was darn close as the #2 ranked Huskies put forth an exemplary team effort to dispatch the #10 Western Michigan Broncos 3-0 at the Herb Brooks National Hockey Center on Friday, January 18. It was indeed a gritty effort against a team that had been undefeated in 10 games and was breathing down the Huskies back for the conference lead in the NCHC. Goaltending was superb, defense was solid and players not typically on the score sheet made their presence in an impressive team win. David Hrenak stepped forward for another outstanding performance in goal and Nick Poehling scored the game-winner as the Huskies improved their conference record to 8-1-2 and extended their lead over second-place Western Michigan by seven points. MORE HERE
#10 BRONCOS FACE #2 SCSU FOR NCHC LEAD
St. Cloud, MN – First place in the National Collegiate Hockey Conference is on the line when the #10 Western Michigan Broncos visit St. Cloud this weekend to face the #2 ranked SCSU Huskies. The Broncos are currently the hottest team in college hockey riding a 10 game unbeaten streak. They have not lost a game since November 10 when they were upended on home ice by Omaha 4-2. The only blemish in their last 10 games is a tie to the UMD Bulldogs on home ice. The Huskies saw their own 10 game undefeated streak end on January 4th in a 7-2 loss to Union College. They’ve gone 2-2-0 in their past 4 games including a 3-1 loss to UMD this past weekend. This weekend begins a stretch of 14 conference games to finish the 2018-19 regular season with eight home games and six road games.
HUSKIES RALLY FOR 4-2 WIN AND WEEKEND SPLIT WITH UMD
Duluth, MN – Championship teams figure out how to deal with adversity. After a frustrating loss to the #5 UMD Bulldogs on Friday, the Huskies were dealt another blow knowing they’d be without one of their top scorers Kevin Fitzgerald and their assistant captain and senior Jacob Benson for the rematch. Fitzgerald, it appears, will be lost until playoff time courtesy a shoulder to shoulder hit by UMD’s Nick Wolfe and an undetermined timetable for Benson. So, the lines were juggled again for the series finale with the Bulldogs. Additionally, a gut decision by the coaching staff had David Hrenak back in goal after allowing three goals on 18 shots on Friday. Finding themselves down by two goals late in the first period, the Huskies put things in gear and scored twice late in the period and rallied for an important 4-2 win and split of the weekend road series with UMD. MORE HERE
TURNOVERS, SHEPARD HAUNT HUSKIES IN 3-1 LOSS TO BULLDOGS
Duluth, MN – Hunter Shepard stopped 30 of 31 shots on goal and the #5 Bulldogs capitalized on three SCSU turnovers to defeat the #1 ranked SCSU Huskies 3-1 at Amsoil Arena in Duluth on Friday, January 11. The loss spoiled coach Brett Larson’s homecoming as the former Bulldog assistant now SCSU head coach brought his top-ranked Huskies to Amsoil for a key weekend series. There were no excuses by Larson as he simply stated ” there are no moral victories in this league. We will have to be better tomorrow.” Regardless, the Huskies dominated long stretches of this contest and outshot the Bulldogs 31-18 but simply couldn’t score on the power play nor get anything past Shepard in a highly disappointing loss. Coach Sandelin admitted “Our best player was our goaltender. When our team is not playing great, your best player has to be your goalie. Shep was outstanding tonight, made some great saves and gave us a chance to win.” MORE HERE
TOP RANKED HUSKIES AND BULLDOGS FACE-OFF THIS WEEKEND
St. Cloud, MN – This series exemplifies what is great about college hockey. This may not be the most critical series in the NCHC this weekend but numerous story lines exist. The defending Penrose Cup Champion faces the defending National Champion. The #1 ranked team in college hockey faces #5. The former UMD assistant coach returns to Duluth as the SCSU head coach to try to derail his mentor. Teammates from the recent World Junior Tournament suddenly become adversaries on the ice. Both teams have positioned themselves to be near locks for the NCAA tourney assuming the wheels don’t suddenly fall off on each. It should be a large and lively crowd with an abundance of visitors in cardinal and black in the house. This pairing has set itself up for a tremendous weekend of competitive hockey and I wouldn’t want to miss it. Read on. MORE HERE
#1 HUSKIES NEED THEIR "QUARTERBACKS" BACK
St. Cloud, MN – Logic tells you line consistency is a key to consistent team play. That’s probably a simplification as lines can become stagnant and unproductive and a change can yield positive results. However, coaches have different philosophies on mixing up lines. Coach Motzko was notorious for changing up line combinations – sometimes weekly and it wasn’t unusual to see in excess of thirty different line combinations during the season. Current SCSU coach Brett Larson has been more reluctant to make wholesale and knee-trigger changes. His lineup has seen 14 different line combinations thus far this season. It would probably be less were it not for a few injuries and the absence of the teams two top centers – Ryan Poehling and Blake Lizotte.The two have been missing for different reasons. For Lizotte, he’s had an “upper body” injury and the coaching staff has been cautious in returning him to the lineup too early since he’s only missed an exhibition and two non-conference games. Poehling’s absence was due to his participation in the 2019 IIHF World Junior Championships that just concluded in British Columbia. All Poehling did was rack up the honors as the USA team won the Silver Medal. Individually, Poehling was named to the WJC All-Star Team, Best Forward, and Tournament MVP. MORE HERE
SCSU HOCKEY: FINAL THOUGHTS FROM PITTSBURGH
Pittsburgh, PA – First, a standing “O’ to the city of Pittsburgh. The Steel City is an amazing sports town and it certainly lived up to it’s #2 ranking on the CenterIceView Road trip list. Sure, there was a disruption in plans as the venue for the opening game was changed from the PPG Paints Arena to the UPMC Lemieux Sports Complex due to a conflict with the Penguins schedule. Would the coaching staff and players have preferred PPG Arena? Of course. Let’s face it, it’s a practice facility for the Penguins and it felt like the Huskies were skating in a scrimmage. Would I have preferred to walk one block from my hotel to PPG Arena as opposed to driving 20 miles up the freeway to the Sports Complex. Again, a big yes. However, you make the best of the situation and roll with it. Beyond that, it was an outstanding road trip and something to look forward to when the Frozen Four takes place in Pittsburgh in 2021. My suggestion? Go! MORE HERE
JACKSON CAPTURES 100TH AS HUSKIES DEFEAT RMU 5-2
Pittsburgh, PA – Bob Jackson predicted on Friday that son Robby would capture his 100th career point as a Husky on Saturday vs Robert Morris. Making the lengthy trip from California he proudly wanted to experience in person seeing his son reach that lofty goal as he would not be able to attend the UMD series next weekend. He was dead on as Jackson scored two key third period goals to lead the Huskies to a 5-2 win over RMU in the consolation game at the PPG Paint Arena on Saturday, January 5th. Jackson played an energetic and determined third period seemingly begging for the opportunity to handle the puck and change the course of a close game with the Colonials. With the game tied 2-2 early in period three Jackson went to work and scored two consecutive goals – his 99th and 100th points but most importantly leading the Huskies to their 14th win of the season. It was a win/win for all as Jackson joined an elite group of SCSU Huskies that have reached this career milestone.
UNION DUTCHMEN BLITZ SCSU 7-2 IN THREE RIVERS OPENER
Cranberry Township, PA- On October 25th, the Huskies blew out the Boston College Eagles by a 7-0 score. It seemed that everything they threw at the Eagles net seemed to find its way in. Admittedly, the score was not really indicative of the game as the Eagles did put forth a competitive effort. After Friday’s game, the Huskies can now sympathize with Boston College after getting blitzed 7-2 by #14 ranked Union College in the opening contest of the Three Rivers Classic College Hockey Tournament. Due to a scheduling conflict with the PPG Arena’s main tenant, the Pittsburgh Penguins, the Huskies and Dutchmen were relegated to the UPMC Lemieux Sports Complex, the Penguins practice facility for the tourney’s opening game. With the atmosphere more like a scrimmage than a regular season game, the Huskies fell behind early, could never gain any scoring traction and lost only their second game of the 2018-19 season. Coincidentally, the team (Union College) that broke college hockey’s longest undefeated streak (SCSU) also defeated the team (Northeastern University) twice that handed the Huskies their only previous loss. In the end, kudos to a Union College team that despite being on the short-end of every statistical category in this game dominated in the only category that counted – number of goals. In a game to forget for college hockey’s third ranked defense, they skewered SCSU’s starting goalie, David Hrenak for six goals on 13 shots ultimately chasing him from the game after 41:32 of play. The loss positioned the Huskies to face tournament host, Robert Morris University on Saturday at 4:00 PM CT for the opportunity to earn some redemption after a forgettable opening game.
#1 SCSU BEGINS 2019 WITH A TRIP TO THE STEEL CITY
St. Cloud, MN – The challenge continues for the #1 ranked SCSU men’s hockey team as they embark on another road trip – this time to the “Steel City” of Pittsburgh to participate in the Three Rivers Classic College Hockey Tournament. With only one set back in 2018 ( 4-3 loss to Northeastern) the Huskies will have a target on their back as the pre-tournament favorite and will face a stern test in the opening game of the tourney vs Union College of Schenectady, NY. With the Huskies currently sitting at #2 in the all-important Pairwise and Union at #15, this game will have important Pairwise implications. Tournament host Robert Morris will face-off against Brown University in the other opening day match-up with SCSU facing one of thos two on Saturday at PPG Paints Arena. These will be the final non-conference games of the 2018-19 season for SCSU as they dive into conference play for their final 16 games. MORE HERE
USA U18 EARNS 6-4 WIN OVER SCSU
St. Cloud, MN – If the Thursday, December 27th game vs the USA U18’s is any indication, the future of USA Hockey for the next several years is pretty good. With a team consisting of 21 future Division I players, the USA U18 team gave SCSU a lesson on their home ice in a 6-4 exhibition win at the Herb Brooks National Hockey Center. A strong skating team with good size, skill and at times some edgy physical play, they proved to be an exceedingly good match for college hockey’s #1 ranked team. Despite missing top forwards Ryan Poehling and Blake Lizotte there were no excuses as the USA squad was also missing two it’s top players in forward Jack Hughes and goaltender Spencer Knight, both off at the World Junior Championships. In their place, goaltender Cameron Rowe, a future NCHC player at North Dakota and Cole Caufield a future Wisconsin Badger led their team to their sixth win in 12 contests vs Division I opponents this season. The Huskies on the other hand, used this exhibition as an opportunity to insert seldom-used players Clark Kuster, Will Hammer and Mika Ilvonen and as a tune-up game for sophomore defenseman, Tyler Anderson who saw his first action since being injured vs Mount Royal in early October. In the end, it was a solid win for Team USA who gave the Huskies fits all night with their speed, quick movement of the puck, skillful passing and puck handling.
POEHLING, HASTINGS ADD SCSU CONNECTION TO 2019 WJC
St. Cloud, MN – The St. Cloud State University connection to the 2019 IIHF World Junior Championships continues with the announcement by USA Hockey of the final team roster on December 23rd. Junior, Ryan Poehling of SCSU and SCSU alumn Mike Hastings will both be representing the USA in this years tournament. Poehling will be participating in his second straight world championship. The native of Lakeville, MN is currently a SCSU junior and is second in team points with 17. He has participated in several international tournaments for Team USA including the WJC in 2018 in Buffalo ( 1G, 2A ), 2017 Under 18 Men’s World Championship in Slovakia (3G, 2A) and the 2016 Ivan Hlinka Memorial in the Czech Republic ( 4G, 2A ). MORE HERE
#1 HUSKIES RETURN TO ACTION IN EXHIBITION VS USA U18 TEAM
St. Cloud, MN – The #1 ranked SCSU Huskies return to home ice in an exhibition vs the USA U18 team on Thursday, December 27, 2018. This tune-up with the U18’s will launch the Huskies into the second half of the 2018-19 season and help prepare them for a new year’s tournament in Pittsburgh, PA on January 4-5. The Huskies currently sit in first-place in the highly competitive National Collegiate Hockey Conference (NCHC) leading second place Western Michigan by seven points. Additionally, the Huskies are currently ranked #2 in the Pairwise Comparison Ratings, a statistical tool used to approximate the process for selecting teams to the NCAA tournament. the Huskies return to league action on January 11/12 in an important series in Duluth vs the UMD Bulldogs. MORE HERE
HUSKIES THROTTLE OMAHA 7-1 TO SWEEP WEEKEND
St. Cloud, MN – The misery continued for the Omaha Mavericks getting blitzed 7-1 and losing their seventh consecutive game to the Huskies at the Herb Brooks National Hockey Center on Saturday, December 8th. The 4-10-2 Mavericks knotted the game 1-1 early in period two but then saw the floodgates open as the Huskies scored six consecutive goals to bury the Mavs and finish the 2018 conference schedule with an impressive 6-0-2 record and a seven point lead over the Western Michigan Broncos currently residing in second place in the NCHC. In contrast to Friday’s contest, the Huskies were seemingly scoring at will as Omaha netminder Evan Weninger was repeatedly left to face an onslaught of Huskies offensive attacks. On this night, thirteen SCSU players had at least one point and four had a multi-point game. Blake Lizotte, who had an outstanding game led the Huskies with two goals. The two NIcks – Perbix and Poehling each had two assists and Patrick Newell who was carrying the puck with confidence all night had a goal and an assist. And, David Hrenak who played both games allowed only one goal in the series and improved his record to 10-0-1. The win improved the Huskies overall record to 13-1-2 as they get a much-needed break before an exhibition contest with the USA Under 18 squad on December 27. MORE HERE
HUSKIES DOMINATE IN 2-0 WIN OVER OMAHA
St. Cloud, MN – The Herb Brooks National Hockey Center has been a tough venue for the Omaha Mavericks. After the Huskies 2-0 win on Friday, November 7th, Omaha is 4-12-1 all-time vs SCSU in St. Cloud. It’s also the 6th consecutive loss to the top-ranked Huskies who by the way, are undefeated on home ice thus far this season. Although the scoreboard did not reflect it, the Huskies put forth a dominating effort outshooting the Mavericks 38-18, winning 61% of the faceoffs and limiting them to an average of six shots per period and allowing SCSU netminder David Hrenak to earn his 9th win and second shutout of the season. They also shut out the Mavericks on their two man-advantage opportunities and to top things of – were 25% on their own power play opportunities. It’s not that it couldn’t have been more lopsided as the Huskies rang several of the post and give credit where credit is due – David Weninger had a nice night in goal. In the end, the Huskies improved their overall record to 12-1-2 and their conference record to 5-0-2. The win also maintained a six-point separation between the Huskies and Western Michigan, UMD and Miami. MORE HERE
SCSU TO HOST OMAHA MAVERICKS THIS WEEKEND
St. Cloud, MN – So far so good. After this weekend, the #1/2 ranked Huskies will have completed one-third of their 2018-19 NCHC conference schedule. Currently 4-0-2, they lead the UMD Bulldogs and Miami Redhawks by three points and the Western Michigan Broncos and Denver Pioneers by six points in the conference standings. After the weekend they face the USA Under 18 team in an exhibition on December 27th and then participate in the Three Rivers Classic hosted by Robert Morris University in Pittsburgh, PA. It’s not until January 11/12 until they return to conference play in a road series at the UMD Bulldogs. After earning three of six points last weekend vs Miami, the Huskies will need to re-group and finish the weekend strong as they head into a break in their schedule. SCSU will face a Omaha squad that had not won a game in the 2018-19 season until they defeated Miami at home by a 6-3 win on November 3. Since then, they’ve gone 4-2-1 and will be determined to leave St. Cloud with some conference points. MORE HERE
HUSKIES AND MIAMI BATTLE TO 2-2 OVERTIME TIE
Oxford, OH – Saying that there is suspense when the Huskies face the Miami RedHawks is an understatement. After Saturday’s game, the two squads have had four consecutive overtime games. Although this game was a polar opposite of Friday nights contest, the result was the same as the two teams skated to a 2-2 overtime draw – at least for NCAA purposes. On this night, Miami earned the satisfaction of the extra league point as Josh Melnick, always tough on the Huskies scored the three on three overtime winner for the extra point and a split of the weekend series with both teams earning three league points. To say the #1 ranked Huskies had difficulty with the RedHawks was an understatement. Although they never once led in the two-game series, the resilient RedHawks always managed to find a way to rally and pull themselves even with the Huskies. On Saturday, December 1, they did so for the second straight game and sent the Huskies back home knowing they have to do a better job shutting the door on a team when they have a third period lead. And, for the RedHawks, they now can be confident in their “backup” goaltender as graduate transfer Jordan Uhelski filled in magnificently for the injured Ryan Larkin shutting down the Huskies to 4 goals in the two contests and stopping 59 of 63 shots on goal in the two games. It was a tough series but that is to be expected in the NCHC. MORE HERE
HUSKIES AND REDHAWKS SKATE TO 4-4 OVERTIME DRAW
Oxford, OH – The #1 ranked SCSU Huskies returned to NCHC conference play on Friday, November 30th and found themselves in a run and gun game with the Miami University RedHawks. The teams combined for 74 shots on goal and 6 first-period goals ultimately settling for a 4-4 overtime tie. Scoreless after the five-minute overtime session and the obligatory three on three overtime session, Blake LIzotte finally settled things quickly in the required shootout on the Huskies first attempt to earn the extra league point. Entertaining for the fans for sure at Steve Cady Rink but most likely frustrating for the SCSU coaching staff to see its team lose some races for the puck, allow a short-handed goal and see Miami’s Casey Gilling score a bad-angle goal with about seven and a half minutes remaining to tie the contest. And despite firing 33 shots on backup goaltender Jordan Uhelski the Huskies could only beat him twice in the 4-4 final. MORE HERE
BACK TO WORK: #1 RANKED SCSU FACES MIAMI THIS WEEKEND
St. Cloud, MN – It’s back to work for the #1 ranked Huskies as they take their unblemished NCHC conference record on the road to face the Miami RedHawks on November 30 | December 1 in Oxford, OH. With one-third of the season already behind them, the Huskies find themselves #2 in the Pairwise rankings as they approach an abbreviated schedule in December and then the crucial month of January with a heavy conference schedule. The Huskies have excelled both on the road and at home but can’t overlook the RedHawks who despite some eratic results thus far, have had an ambitious non-conference schedule and currently sit tied for third in the conference. Miami’s been pretty successful on their home rink with a 6-2-0 record including wins over North Dakota and UMass-Lowell and a sweep of Colgate and Huntsville. Success can be fleeting in the tough NCHC and the Huskies only need to look back on the conference playoffs last season and the very tough series with the RedHawks. The Huskies prevailed but it took an overtime win in the deciding third game to advance the Huskies to the Frozen Faceoff. The RedHawks would like nothing better than to derail the Huskies momentum and prove that they will be a contender in the NCHC this season. MORE HERE
SCSU GETS OFFENSIVE IN 7-4 SWEEP OF BEMIDJI STATE
St. Cloud, MN – The story line on Saturday was the return of goaltender Zach Driscoll to the Herb Brooks National Hockey Center to face his former team as the starter in goal for the BSU Beavers. With Driscoll leading the country with a paltry goals against average of 0.98 and a stingy .959 save percentage it appeared that the gallery would be in for another low-scoring contest right? Obviously, the #2 ranked Huskies had other designs on this game after a frustrating effort on Friday night in their 2-0 win. They proved their point early drilling the former Husky with four even strength goals in the first twenty-seven minutes to force an early exit of Driscoll en route to a 7-4 win and sweep of their WCHA rival. To be fair, it was not a particularly good night for any of the three goaltenders that played with back-up Jack Burgart allowing three goals and the Huskies David Hrenak four as they all seemed to be battling the puck. As opposed to Friday, offense took center stage as the see-saw game ultimately went to the Huskies. Jimmy Schuldt and sophomore forward Kevin Fitzgerald scored twice to lead the Huskies in this weekend sweep and push their overall record to 11-1-0. MORE HERE
HUSKIES SQUEEZE BY BEMIDJI STATE 2-0
St. Cloud, MN – In retrospect, coach Larson’s intuition was dead on. He wanted goaltender David Hrenak to take a mental break from the game and start Jeff Smith on Friday vs the Bemidji State University Beavers at the Herb Brooks National Hockey Center. He couldn’t have planned a more accurate move. Smith, who fell out of the rotation for two games earned a shutout after stopping 32 shots on goal including several big saves down the stretch as the Huskies squeezed by a very tough Bemidji State squad by a 2-0 score. And, to top things off, he added a third period assist on Kevin Fitzgerald’s empty net goal to garner the games #1 star. The other key component on the night was Easton Brodzinski who scored the game-winning goal on a power play but easily could have had several more were it not for a strong effort on the other end of the rink by Henry Johnson, the BSU netminder. It turns out the Beavers were what they thought they were – disciplined, dedicated to a strong forecheck , tight gap play and jumping on the numerous turnovers they forced. In the end, the Huskies were outshot 32 to 21 and despite being frustrated to no end at times by the battle-ready Beavers won their fifth straight game and fifth at home to improve their overall record to 10-1-0.
HUSKIES TO FACE IN-STATE RIVAL BEMIDJI STATE THIS WEEKEND
St. Cloud, MN – The #2 ranked SCSU Huskies place their four-game winning streak on the line hosting fellow Minnesota State Universities and Colleges institution, Bemidji State University at the Herb Brooks National Hockey Center on November 16 and 17. These two teams have a long history of competition going back to the NCAA Division III years for both schools. There is also a number of crossover stories including Bemidij State University’s head coach Tom Serratore’s years at SCSU as an assistant coach under Craig Dahl from 1993 to 1999. On the other bench, current SCSU assistant coach Mike Gibbons is a graduate of Bemidji State University, where he played for the Beavers men’s hockey team from 1975 to 1979. He gained All-America recognition in 1978 and 1979, was a member of the national title-winning team in 1979 and started his coaching career at Bemidji State as an assistant in 1981. He served as the BSU head coach during the 1982-83 season, while head coach Bob Peters took a year-long sabbatical and was named the NHCA Conference Coach of the Year and the College Division National Coach of the Year. Also, of interest is current BSU goaltender Zach Driscoll began his collegiate career at SCSU during the 2016-17 season and then transferred to BSU becoming eligible to play for the Beavers this season. Also, current BSU sophomore forward, Brendan Harris was an early commit to SCSU before deciding to sign his national letter of intent with the Beavers. Finally, current BSU defenseman, Dillon Eichstadt is the nephew of former SCSU player, Scott Eichstadt who skated for the Huskies through the 1990-91 season. As a result, the multiple story lines will make for an interesting series between these two Minnesota schools this weekend in St. Cloud. MORE HERE
TOP USHL GOALTENDER LAMOREAUX COMMITS TO HUSKIES
St. Cloud, MN – The Madison Capitols of the United States Hockey League (USHL) announced on November 11 that goaltender Joseph Lamoreaux has committed to play hockey at St. Cloud State University. Lamoreaux also announced via Twitter on November 11 “I am proud and honored to announce my commitment to St. Cloud State University. Can’t thank my family, friends, and coaches enough for all of their support!” The 6′ 1″ 190 native of Shorewood, WI recently completed a visit to SCSU and remarked ” I got to go visit the campus and meet all the coaches. It felt right. It felt like home. It’s a place I can see myself spending 4 years of my life.” MORE HERE
HUSKIES COMPLETE SWEEP OF DENVER PIONEERS 4-3
St. Cloud, MN – Denver goaltender Devin Cooley’s head had to have been spinning this weekend. Having played only three games last season he was thrown into the starting role and has played in every game. However, this weekend vs the #2 ranked Huskies it must have felt like a “Baptism of Fire” facing 80 shots in the series by a relentless SCSU attack that ended up sweeping the previously undefeated and #5 ranked Pioneers. Cooley did his best to shut down the Huskies making loads of impressive saves as the defense continually melted down in front of him. But, to his credit, he kept both games close losing both by the identical score of 4-3. And, in both games, it was the Huskies that had to rally from a two-goal deficit to capture the sweep. It’s now four straight come from behind wins for the Huskies who improved their overall record to 9-1-0 and NCHC record to 4-0-0. MORE HERE
WALKER LEADS SCSU TO 4-3 WIN OVER DENVER IN BATTLE OF ROOKIES
St. Cloud, MN – The National Collegiate Hockey Conference is cultivating some high-test rookies and several were on display at the Herb Brooks National Hockey Center in St. Cloud on Friday. Of the seven goals scored, five were by first-year players including two by SCSU’s Nolan Walker and one each by Denver’s Cole Guttman, Emilio Pettersen and Brett Stapley. In the end, it was Nolan Walker and his Huskies that prevailed in an early season conference battle between the #2 ranked Huskies and #5 ranked Denver Pioneers. The two squads led by first-year head coaches David Carle of Denver and Brett Larson of St. Cloud gave the crowd of 4000 an exciting and fast paced contest and an early look at a half-dozen first-year forwards that should make a run at the NCHC All-rookie team this season. Between Walker and Hentges of St. Cloud and Guttman, Pettersen and Stapley they’ve combined for 18 goals. For the winning Huskies, Walker was the leading scorer on the night with 2 goals and an assist for three points. The win improved the Huskies to an overall 8-1-0 record and 3-0-0 in the NCHC placing them in first place in the early season standings. Denver who entered the series 5-0-1 suffered their first loss of the season. MORE HERE
#2 SCSU HUSKIES RETURN HOME TO FACE #5 DENVER PIONEERS
St. Cloud, MN – After having played six of their first eight games on the road, the #2 ranked Huskies finally return home to face the #5 ranked and undefeated Denver Pioneers at the Herb Brooks National Hockey Center. The Pioneers saw some wholesale changes to their team after the 2017-18 season but have responded nicely entering this weekends series with a 5-0-1 overall record and 2-0-0 conference record which includes a home sweep of Western Michigan last weekend. This series represents a return matchup between the two teams in the NCHC Frozen Faceoff Championship game last March . The Pioneers defeated the Huskies 4-1 in that contest. St. Cloud State enters this key conference series with a 7-1-0 record and a 2-0-0 conference record. Please note that Friday’s game will be at 7:07 Pm CT with the series finale at 6:07 PM CT on Saturday. Both games will be televised. MORE HERE
SCSU ROAD WARRIORS COMPLETE SWEEP OF TIGERS 2-1
Colorado Springs, CO- Coach Larson recognizes the value obtained from his team’s grueling early season road schedule. The approximate 10,000 flight miles that they’ve logged traveling to Fairbanks, AK, Boston MA and Colorado Springs, CO has noticeably bonded this team and given him time to connect better with his players with minimal distractions. It’s also given them the confidence that they can go on the road and be successful. On the other hand, they’ve hardly had a normal week of practice since the exhibition game with Mount Royal in early October. So, it’s a bit of relief that they’ll be returning to the friendly confines of the Herb Brooks National Hockey Center for several weeks until another road trip to face Miami the end of the month. With a 6-1-0 record, we can give the team an “A” for their results so far under their new coach. This past weekend, they added two early season conference wins with their sweep of the Colorado College Tigers at the Broadmoor World Arena. The 2-1 win on Saturday was not easy and probably was not without a little controversy. But, they overcame eight penalties and limited the Tigers to one power play goal in squeezing out this victory. It was another come back win as they had to do so on Friday as well. So, they return to St. Cloud with an enviable road record, will get in a normal week of practice and prepare to face the other Colorado team – Denver University on home ice next weekend. MORE HERE
HUSKIES EARN HARD FOUGHT WIN OVER COLORADO COLLEGE 5-3
Colorado Springs, CO – “Hockey is cruel – you continually dominate them and one shot and they are ahead.” tweeted hockey fan Keith Mueller. As unfair as it seemed to the SCSU fans watching this game on Friday, November 2nd, that was indeed the case. Albeit for a portion of the first period, the #2 ranked Huskies put forth a dominating effort but it took a four-goal third period to finally dispose of the Colorado College Tigers at the Broadmoor World Arena Friday. SCSU fell behind 2-0 in the first period and it was beginning to look like the Tigers would get their first win vs the Huskies on home ice since 2013. But a rally in the third period erased the Tigers thoughts of an upset as the Huskies prevailed 5-3 for their first conference win. MORE HERE
#2 HUSKIES BACK ON THE ROAD TO FACE RESURGENT CC TIGERS
St. Cloud, MN – The #2 ranked Huskies pack their bags for their third extended road trip of the early season as they head to Colorado Springs, CO to face the Tigers in both squads NCHC series opener. Granted, the Huskies have not lost a game in the ‘Springs since 2013 and have sixteen wins in the last twenty games but after five years of rebuilding this is a different Colorado College squad. With greatly improved talent, experience and a winning mindset the Huskies are sure to have a formidable challenge ahead of them. One of the top road venues for Husky fans, the weekend should see plenty of sunshine and a beautiful locale for a weekend hockey trip. MORE HERE
NORTHEASTERN COMEBACK HANDS SCSU FIRST LOSS OF SEASON
Boston, MA – To the SCSU hockey fans in attendance, the “Let’s Go Huskies” chant which became more prominent in the second period at historic Matthews Arena probably seemed oddly out-of-place. However, the style of play of the two teams with the same nickname was very similar and led to a highly competitive and entertaining game on Saturday, October 27 in Boston. The SCSU Huskies forged a 2-0 lead early in the second period and it appeared they were on their way to their sixth win of the season.The Northeastern Huskies had other designs for the outcome in front of their home crowd. Outshooting SCSU by a 15-10 margin in the second period, they scored a late period goal and leveraged that momentum into the third scoring two more times en-route to a 3-2 comeback win over the #2 ranked Huskies. With a shake-up in a lineup missing senior Robby Jackson, SCSU seemed out of sync at times and the legs appeared somewhat weary in the second period. But they regained their energy in the third, outshot Northeastern 12-6 but couldn’t beat sophomore goaltender Cayden Primeau in this battle of netminders. In the end, it was a Hockey East win on this night with the hope by this writer that these two squads meet once again later in the season.
QUICK UPDATE: SCSU HUSKIES VS NORTHEASTERN HUSKIES
HENTGES AND WALKER LEAD HUSKIES TO 7-0 BLOWOUT OF BC
Boston, MA – As an athlete, there are certain events that you remember for the rest of your life. In Sam Hentges’s case, it would be impossible to forget October 25, 2018 in Boston, MA. at the Eagles’ Kelly Rink. A goal in each period provided the first-year forward with a hat trick and propelled the #2 ranked Huskies to a 7-0 blowout win over Hockey East’s Boston College Eagles. Not to be overshadowed by the Hentges hat trick, fellow first-year forward Nolan Walker netted two goals giving the freshman 5 of the 7 goals in the contest. And, sophomore goaltender David Hrenak stopped all 32 SOG as the Huskies improved to 5-0-0 to start the 2018-19 season. They’ve now shutout two consecutive opponents and outscored them 12-0 in those games with Boston College and Northern Michigan. Go back three games and they’ve allowed one goal. In all, first-year players accounted for 11 points on Friday including Brendan Bushy (0-1-1), Nick Perbix (0-1-1) and Spencer Meier (0-2-2).
#2 HUSKIES EMBARK ON CHALLENGING HOCKEY EAST ROAD TRIP
St. Cloud, MN – It’s been a geography lesson for the #2 ranked St. Cloud State University hockey team early in the 2018-19 season. A trip to Alaska two weekends ago to face the Nanooks in a non-conference series was a good team bonding experience. The first week in November will have them in Colorado to face the resurgent Colorado College Tigers to begin conference play. Of immediate concern this week is a road trip to Boston, MA to face Hockey East foes Boston College and Northeastern University. The Huskies hosted the Eagles a year ago in St. Cloud but have not faced the Huskies of Northeastern since the turn of the millennium in November of 2000. Despite a combined early season 2-5-0 record for these two opponents it’s going to be a very challenging trip and a huge test for the Huskies who are off to a 4-0-0 start. A non-typical schedule has the Huskies facing off against the Boston College Eagles on Thursday, Oct. 25 and the NU Huskies on Saturday, Oct. 27.
HUSKIES SHUT DOWN NMU WILDCATS 5-0 FOR WEEKEND SWEEP
St. Cloud, MN – The #4 ranked SCSU Huskies were so dominant on Saturday night they had the game-winning goal in hand by the 7:15 mark of period one. Further indication of their superiority in this 5-0 shutout was a 31-10 advantage in total shots on goal, having a success rate of 66% (2/3) on the power play and a shut down defense that allowed an average of 3 shots per period and yes, a shutout for senior goaltender Jeff Smith. Once again, it was scoring by committee with two power play goals, 5 different players scoring and 3 seperate lines scoring when even-strength. Expecting a much tougher battle from an experienced NMU squad on Saturday, the Huskies delighted their fans once again with quick transition, tape to tape passes and aggressive drives to the opponent’s goal. In the end, the Huskies placed 64 shots on 2017-18 WCHA First-Team Goaltender Atte Tolvanen over the two-game series beating him nine times in the weekend sweep.
SCSU HUSKIES IMPRESS IN 4-1 WIN OVER NMU WILDCATS
St. Cloud, MN – The gas tank was full and the engine was running on all cylinders as the #4 ranked SCSU Huskies posted an impressive 4-1 win over the Northern Michigan University Wildcats on Friday, October 20th at the Herb Brooks National Hockey Center. The Huskies peppered NMU All-American goaltender Atte Tolvanen with 16 shots in the second period scoring twice including the game-winner by Easton Brodzinski as SCSU improved its record to 3-0 on the early season. Four different players netted goals on the evening and Blake Lizotte who seemingly was a part of every big play assisted on two of them. The only blemish on the evening was a five-minute major and game disqualification penalty to Jack Ahcan late in period two that led to the Wildcats only goal of the game.
WILDCATS TO OFFER EARLY SEASON TEST TO SCSU HUSKIES
St. Cloud, MN – It’s been awhile – almost six years since the SCSU Huskies faced off against the Northern Michigan University Wildcats in a regular season matchup. A lot of things have changed since that early January 2013 series. The blow-up of college hockey after the 2012-13 season caused the Huskies to depart the WCHA for the newly formed NCHC and the Wildcats were forced to find a home in the WCHA after the dismantling of the Central Collegiate Hockey Association (CCHA). After an up and down season, the Huskies made a post-season run to the Frozen Four ultimately losing to Quinnipiac in Pittsburgh in the NCAA semi-finals. Northern Michigan, on the other hand, finished with a unremarkable 15-19-4 record having their season end in the first round of the CCHA playoffs to Michigan. However, the Wildcats led by non-household names like Thurber, Seckel, Macauley, Ludwig and Coreau swept a Huskies squad led by Captain Ben Hanowski, Hobey Baker winner Drew LeBlanc, Hobey finalist Ethan Prow and future NHLers Dowd, Brodzinski, Gravel, Kossila and Jensen. In that “locks of love” season, the Wildcats upended the Huskies by a 6-2 score on Friday and returned to complete the sweep with a 2-1 margin the next night. This weekend, the Huskies and Wildcats return to face each other in a throwback non-conference matchup at the Herb Brooks National Hockey Center. MORE HERE
HUSKIES SWEEP WEEKEND WITH 6-2 WIN OVER ALASKA NANOOKS
Fairbanks, AK – It was by no means a perfect weekend. The Huskies are off to a 2-0-0 start and new head coach Brett Larson has a nice beginning to his head coaching career at SCSU. But, with less than a week of formal practice behind them I’m sure Coach Larson has lots to work on. With segments of sloppy play and some positional snags in their defensive play it looked like early season hockey. But once the team got their act together in game two of the series they showed how explosive they can be. The Huskies scored three times in period three to break open a one goal game and cruised to a 6-2 final vs the Alaska Nanooks of the WCHA. At times they made it look awfully easy as Robby Jackson scored twice to lead the Huskies on this night. MORE HERE
HUSKIES EDGE THE NANOOKS 3-2 IN ALASKA
Fairbanks, AK – The #3/5 ranked Huskies traveled 2900 miles to get some work on their special teams in a 3-2 road win over the University of Alaska Nanooks on Friday, October 12. With the flow of the game dictated by the officials, the Huskies blanked the Nanooks man-advantage seven times and scored once in seven opportunities on their own man-advantage in the season opening victory. Senior Patrick Newell showed the advantage a skilled senior has in an early season game netting two goals and assisting on another to reward new head coach Brett Larson with his first win as the Huskies skipper. MORE HERE
SCSU HOCKEY: 2018-19 SEASON BEGINS WITH TRIP TO ALASKA
St. Cloud, MN – If you’re crazy enough to head out by car, figure it’ll take you two days and ten hours to drive non-stop to Fairbanks, AK. Naturally, most sane people would book a flight which will get you there in about six hours with the luxury of earning back three hours with the time zone change. It’s a long, monotonous flight and it will be that way for most of the SCSU players and coaches. But, for sure there’s one player looking forward to the flight to Alaska. Nolan Walker is a home-grown Alaskan and it’s a special treat for him to play his first collegiate hockey game in Alaska. He told me ” It’s been a dream of mine to play Division I college hockey so putting on that jersey (last Sunday) was a dream come true. It will be special to play my first career college hockey games in Alaska in front of family and friends and I’ll have about 20 of them coming to the games.” When asked about his first time on the ice in a game situation for the Huskies he responded ” It was nice to get an exhibition game under my belt and get a feel for college hockey. I felt a little nervous to start the game but as the game went on, it felt like any other game. We have a great group of guys and I can’t wait to see what we can do this year.” The talented youngster impressed last Sunday, got some power play time and finished with one assist in the contest vs Mount Royal University of Calgary, AB. MORE HERE
HUSKIES TOP COUGARS 6-2 IN EXHIBITION OPENER
St. Cloud, MN – Sure, it was just an exhibition to start the season but an important start for new SCSU head coach Brett Larson and his six first-year players . Although coach Larson admitted to the players “he too had butterflies” on the eve of his first game “he expected the first-year players to be nervous but thought they all did well and will just keep getting better.”
The 6-2 win doesn’t count in the pairwise nor the stats column but that’s not the point of these games. With only one full day of practice under their belt, the game allows the coaching staff to play it’s entire roster, do some experimenting and give the first-year players some valuable game experience. And, those first-year players took advantage of it with four of the six (Bushy, Walker, Perbix and Meier) garnering points in the contest. Larson said “they (the team) were shaking the rust off early but by the second period you could see the rust coming off and you could see how good this team could be.” He further stated ” I’m just really excited about where this group can get to. You saw small bits and pieces tonight. Once we shake the rust off and we get to know each other and build our identity together I’m excited about where this group can go.” MORE HERE
5 MINUTE CLICK: SCSU HOCKEY UPDATE 10/5/18
St. Cloud, MN – New SCSU head hockey hockey coach Brett Larson begins his tenure behind the bench this Saturday as the Huskies face off in an exhibition contest with the Mount Royal University Cougars of Calgary, Alberta at 5:00 PM at the Herb Brooks National Hockey Center. MORE HERE
PREVIEW: DEPTH IS KEY FOR 2018-19 HUSKIES
St. Cloud, MN – Recent preseason polls have the SCSU Huskies pegged at #3 nationally (College Hockey News), #6 (US College Hockey Online) and to finish #2 in the NCHC. I don’t place a lot of confidence in preseason polls even though they make for fun preseason discussion. However, I’ll make a few general predictions about the Huskies prospects for this season:
The Huskies WILL be a legitimate favorite to repeat as Penrose Cup Champions in 2018-19.
They WILL treat their fans to another NCHC Frozen Faceoff appearance in St. Paul in March.
They WILL make their 13th all-time appearance in the NCAA tournament in the 2018-19 season.
If I’ve learned anything about the formula for success in college hockey it’s essentially three things beyond outright talent – experience, depth and goaltending. This team is blessed with all three. SCSU loses four players from the 2017-18 squad that went 25-9-6 overall, won the regular season NCHC title and made their 12th appearance in the NCAA tournament – 5th in six seasons. Success under new Head Coach Brett Larson should follow once again. MORE HERE
AJHL'S ETHAN LEYER COMMITS TO THE SCSU HUSKIES
St. Cloud, MN – The St. Cloud State University run on commitments continues as a speedy forward from the Alberta Junior Hockey League announced his commitment to the Huskies via twitter on September 27th. Ethan Leyer, a 5′ 8″ 155 pound right-shooting forward from St. Albert, AB announced “I’m honoured to announce my commitment to play Division 1 hockey at St. Cloud State University. I’d like to thank my coaches, friends and most importantly my family for helping me pursue my hockey goals!”
The 16 year-old is currently skating for the Bonnyville Pontiacs of the AJHL and has one assist in 5 games. He had an awfully productive season in 2017-18 while playing for Northern Alberta Elite 15’s of the Canadian Sport School Hockey League (CSSHL) scoring 17 goals and adding 32 assists for 49 points in just 35 games. The Elite 15’s are the top midget division of the CSSHL.
One of Leyer’s biggest assets is his breakaway speed. He’s good around the net and has shown an ability to put up impressive offensive numbers at every level he’s played including 54 points in 33 games at the bantam AA level and 68 points in 36 games at the bantam AAA level. .
Leyer was a 2017 draft choice of the Portland Winterhawks of the Western Hockey League.
HIGH EXPECTATIONS FOR 2018-19 SCSU ROOKIE CLASS
St. Cloud, MN – Despite having two collegiate National Championship rings, consider head coach Brett Larson a member of the 2018-19 SCSU “Rookie” class. Larson began his coaching career in 2008-09 as an assistant with the UMD Bulldogs. After three seasons, he assumed the head coaching position for the Sioux City Musketeers of the United States Hockey League. He then moved on to Ohio State University as Associate head coach for the 2013-14 and 2014-15 season helping to recruit some of the players on the 2017-18 Frozen Four Buckeye team. He returned to UMD and most recently was a member of the Bulldog staff for two seasons. Larson was a member of the coaching staff for both the 2011 and 2018 National Championship Bulldog squads. Additionally, Larson, served as the head coach for gold medal-winning Team USA at the 2012 World Junior A Challenge. He captained the Bulldogs during his senior year in 1994-95 when he attained Western Collegiate Hockey Association All-Academic Team recognition for a third straight time and also landed the team’s Community Service Award. He was selected in the 11th round by the Detroit Red Wings in the 1990 National Hockey League draft. Hired in April, Larson became the third coach in SCSU Division I history and immediately began the task of transitioning the team to a new coaching staff. MORE HERE
BLOOMINGTON'S CHASE BEACOM COMMITS TO SCSU
St. Cloud, MN – The SCSU Huskies of the National Collegiate Hockey Conference have had a nice run of commitments from some very talented young defensemen. Already committing for the future are youngsters Jack Peart, Evan Bushy, John Opilka and Christian Miller. They apparently have landed another commitment in mobile, puck moving defenseman, Chase Beacom, a native of Bloomington, MN. Beacom announced via Twitter on August 29 “I am honored and excited to announce my commitment to play Division I hockey and further my education at St. Cloud State University. Thank you to my family, friends and coaches on helping me get to where I am today.”
A 2003 birth date, the left shooting Beacom already has one year of varsity hockey under his belt skating in 25 games for Bloomington Kennedy H.S. compiling 1 goal and 6 assists for 7 points as a 9th grader. Along with previous SCSU commit and fellow defenseman, Jack Peart, he was ranked as one of the top 2003 birth dates in Minnesota. As a result, in May, Beacom was selected to participate in the World Selects Invite in Philadelphia showcasing the top 2003 birth dates in the world. He had 2 goals in 7 games in that showcase. Currently listed at 5’5″ and 140 pounds, Beacom has some growing to do but reminds of current Husky Jack Ahcan as a smart puck mover with grit.
Neutral Zone, a prominent amateur scouting and ranking service described Beacom as an “undersized athletic defender who is agile in tight areas. His lateral movement in the neutral zone was worth noting and we liked his battle level. He likes to hit and he squeezes off forwards on zone entries. Regularly he hits his outlets tape to tape and makes sound decisions with the puck. A nice skill and grit combo defender who will get better as he grows.”
Beacom could arrive on campus at SCSU for the 2022 season.
WISCONSIN NATIVE BROCK BAKER SELECTS SCSU HUSKIES
St. Cloud, MN – There are a lot of adjectives used to describe the latest player to commit to St. Cloud State University hockey: “undersized, speedy, shifty, explosive” are just a few. SCSU hockey fans will have a first-hand look at those skills in the future as Brockton Baker announced his commitment to SCSU hockey via twitter on September 2nd. Baker announced ” Very proud and honored to announce my commitment to play DI hockey for St. Cloud State University! Thank you to all the family, friends and coaches who have helped me along the way!” MORE HERE
EVAN BUSHY COMMITS TO ST. CLOUD STATE UNIVERSITY
St. Cloud, MN – The St. Cloud State University Huskies received a commitment from an athletic, speedy, two-way defender as Thief River Falls native Evan Bushy announced his commitment to the Huskies via Twitter on August 20. He announced “Honored and excited to announce my commitment to play college hockey at St. Cloud State University! Thanks to all who have helped !” And, oh by the way, he just happens to be the brother of incoming first-year SCSU defenseman, Brendan Bushy. The sixteen year-old (2002 birth date) 6’0″ 180 pound left shooting defenseman, led his Thief River Falls High School squad to the Section 8 championship and the Class A Minnesota State High School Tournament in 2018.
Bushy finished the 2017-18 season (including playoffs) with 11 goals and 22 assists for 33 points in 31 games. This included 6 power play goals and 2 points in 3 state tournament games. Bushy was also a draft choice of the Sioux Falls Stampede in the 2018 USHL Futures Draft. He will return to lead his TRF Prowler squad as a Junior into the 2018-19 season.
Neutral Zone, a prominent scouting service noted ” (Bushy) has size, speed and agility on the blue line. He is alert and aware in his own end, has a good stick and moves the puck quickly. He looked very athletic and is a younger player with tons of up-side. He has a whole bunch of tools and is a player to watch”.
Obviously, the opportunity to play collegiate hockey with his brother Brendan was one of the keys to his commitment to St. Cloud. He told me ” Brendan and I have always been close and to have a chance to be a teammate with him is very special.” He further stated “The big thing I like about St. Cloud was the culture, the coaching staff, the facilities and the community. The chance to play with my brother was hard to pass up.” On his style of play Bushy noted ” I’m a two-way defenseman who is very active on both ends of the ice and can play in any situation.”
Bushy joins an already solid group of commitments on the blue line including Brady Ziemer, Valtteri Pirronen, Christian Miller, Jack Peart and John Opilka.
SCSU HOCKEY ALUMNI BOND AT STILLWATER GOLF OUTING
Stillwater, MN – With slightly less than 70 days before the start of the 2018-19 hockey season, SCSU coach Brett Larson engaged a number of former SCSU players in a leisurely round of golf and dinner on 7/28/2018 at the Indian Hills Golf Course in Stillwater, MN. The groups represented a number of different eras of Husky hockey including the undefeated 1961-62 SCSU squad represented by John Duncan, Al Paulson, Dale Carmichael and Ed Noble. Other notables included former NHLers Duvie Westcott and Joe Motzko, SCSU All-Americans Dave Reichel, Scott Meyer, Ethan Prow and recent players Andrew Prochnow, Judd Peterson and Joe Rehkamp also enjoyed a day of golf. It was great fun to chat with the former players such as George Awada who spent many years playing hockey in Ireland, Jon Ammerman, now the head coach at Moorhead High School and recently departed SCSU assistant Garrett Raboin now with the University of Minnesota.
AUSTRALIAN ZACH OKABE COMMITS TO SCSU HOCKEY
St. Cloud, MN – For a seventeen year-old, Zachary Okabe has seen a lot of the world. Born in Japan and raised for a portion of his life in Australia he has dual citizenship in Australia and Japan. Okabe moved to the USA for a bit, played hockey on Vancouver Island and then moved to Okotoks, Alberta (just south of Calgary) to skate for the Grand Prairie Storm of the Alberta Junior Hockey League (AJHL). Okabe’s next move will be to St. Cloud, Minnesota as the forward announced his commitment to the Huskies via Twitter on August 9. Okabe announced “Proud and honoured to announce my commitment to play college hockey at St. Cloud State University . I would like to thank my family, teammates, coaches, and friends that helped me along this journey.” STORY HERE
JOHN OPILKA COMMITS TO ST. CLOUD STATE UNIVERSITY
St. Cloud, MN – The St. Louis Junior Blues announced via twitter on July 28 that 15 year-old left shooting defenseman, John Opilka (Effingham, IL) has made a commitment to play hockey at St. Cloud State University. The Blues announced “Congratulations to U16 AAA Blues defensemen @pilks_7 on his commitment to St.Cloud State hockey”. The 6’1″ 190 Opilka skated for the Junior Blues during the 2017-18 season playing in 55 games and compiling 4 goals and 8 assists for 12 points. In July, he was invited to the Select 16 USA Hockey Development Camp in Buffalo, NY among 180 of the top players in his age group in the USA. STORY HERE
2018 TELUS CUP CHAMP RANDAZZO COMMITS TO SCSU
St. Cloud, MN – It’s been a while since the St. Cloud State University Huskies have rostered a player from the prestigious Notre Dame Hounds hockey program in Wilcox, Saskatchewan. Recognized as one of Canada’s top amateur development programs, it combines an amazing tradition of hockey success with an emphasis on academic excellence at Athol Murray College Preparatory School. Andrew Gordon was the last player to skate for the Huskies from this famed school competing for the Huskies for three seasons from 2004-2007 after two seasons with the Notre Dame Hounds. The Halifax, Nova Scotia native was a member of the 100 point club in just three seasons scoring 51 goals and adding 51 assists for 102 points. A draft choice pf the Washington Capitals, Gordon has had an extensive professional career in the ECHL, AHL and played 55 games in the National Hockey league. For the past few seasons he has played in the Swedish Hockey League (SweHL.).
On January 13th, it was announced that former Alexandria, MN High School goaltender Aaron Randazzo has committed to the SCSU Huskies. “FCA Hockey Advisors is excited to announce that Advisory Player Aaron Randazzo has committed to play his college hockey at St. Cloud State University!”. Randazzo, who just turned 17 in May, is a 6″0″ 177 pound left-catching goaltender who played 15 games for the Alexandria Cardinals as a freshman in 2016-17 and 21 games for The Notre Dame Hounds AAA Midget program competing in the Saskatchewan Midget Hockey League (SMHL). Randazzo posted outstanding numbers compiling a 1.62 GAA and .920 SV% in 21 regular season games and 1.00 GAA and .951 SV% in 4 Telus Cup playoff games.
Considered one of Canada’s prestigious championships, the Cup represents the champion of the National Midget Tournament. Randazzo was a key component of this championship making 29 saves in the title game vs Cantonniers de Magog (Quebec). Neutral Zone, a prominent scouting and player ranking service gave Randazzo an “A” ranking for his performance in the Telus Cup. They stated ” Has good size and very good mobility. He plays with a lot of confidence as he comes out and challenges the shooter. He’s had a great week (in the Telus Cup) winning all 4 games and only giving up 4 goals. He had no glaring weaknesses as he is a very sound goalie”.
Randazzo was also recently invited to the 2018 USA Hockey Development Camp in Buffalo, NY and received a “B’ ranking from Neutral Zone. They commented ” He reads the play well, gets in position and sits and stays square with the shooter. He doesn’t have any unnecessary movement. He was calm and focused and made difficult saves look routine. With his size and technical ability he has a bright future ahead.”
Randazzo is currently competing for a position with the Dubuque Fighting Saints of the United States Hockey League for 2018-19. It is estimated he could join the Huskies for the 2020-21 season.
This is an intriguing commit for the Huskies in a player who has seen a great deal of success as a youngster. His upside and development is certainly something to keep an eye on for the next few seasons. An athletic goaltender who appears to have made the Dubuque Fighting Saints roster as a high school aged junior is very impressive. MORE HERE
SARTELL'S MEIER TO JOIN HUSKIES IN 2018-19
St. Cloud, MN – If you take a look at the recently posted 2018-19 SCSU Men’s Hockey Roster you’ll note the addition of Spencer Meier to the already deep crew of defensemen on this years squad. Meier, who was a recruit of former coach Bob Motzko, reaffirmed his commitment to SCSU after meeting with the current SCSU coaching staff and completed his National Letter of Intent for the 2018-19 season. The Sartell, MN native made great strides after one season with the Fargo Force of the United States Hockey League and was instrumental in the team’s Clark Cup Championship this past season.
Individually, the 6′ 4″ 190 pound Meier had a solid season both on the offensive and defensive end of the rink completing the season tied for the USHL lead in power play assists with 22 and 7th among USHL defenseman in plus/minus at +18. He was also tied for 7th among defenseman with 34 points in 59 games. Fargo Force coach Cary Eades told the St. Cloud Times in May “He can shoot the puck, has good vision, great hockey sense and is very coachable. He’s a very well-rounded defenseman. He’s not just a guy who plays offense. He can defend.”
Meier will join a solid group of first-year defensemen in 2018-19 including Elk River’s Nick Perbix, a 6’4″ 193 pound Tampa Bay Lightning draftee who played for Omaha of the USHL this past season and Brendan Bushy, a 6’2″ 214 pound Thief River Falls, MN native who was a two-year veteran of the Dubuque Fighting Saints.
The Huskies will enter the 2018-19 season with ten defenseman including seniors Jimmy Schuldt, Jon Lizotte and Mika Ilvonen, Juniors Clark Kuster and Jack Ahcan and sophomores Luke Jaycox and Tyler Anderson. It’s quite likely the team could experiment with Mika Ilvonen at forward during the season.
HERB BROOKS AWARD WINNER MOLENAAR COMMITS TO SCSU
St. Cloud, MN – The Herb Brooks Award is given to the most qualified hockey player in the state tournament who strongly represents the values, characteristics, and traits that defined Herb Brooks. Maybe it’s appropriate that the 2018 Class AA Herb Brooks Award winner Joey Molenaar, will be lacing up his skates in the future at the Herb Brooks National Hockey Center in St. Cloud. Molenaar announced via Twitter on June 21st “Honored to announce my commitment to play college hockey at St. Cloud State University! I appreciate all of the support over the years.”
Beyond the fact that Molenaar is a recognized leader in the locker room and on the ice the 6′ 181 pound left-handed shooter also proved his playing abilities as well scoring 31 goals and adding 12 assists for 43 points in 31 games for the State Class AA Champion Minnetonka Skippers. A player with a tendency to perform in big games, Molenaar had two goals and four assists in the state tournament. Playing for Team SW in the MN Elite League Molenaar scored 5 goals in the 2017 championship game. Neutral Zone, a prominent scouting and ranking service ranked Molenaar as one of seven “A” ranked players in the 2018 Class AA State Tournament. They noted “His play is a bit understated. He managed the puck well, got shots to the net and has good size and strength. He competes hard, slides to good spots without the puck and set up screens well. He is balanced on his skates and strong on the puck. He also has a slick element to his game as he is able to slip pucks into defenders’ blind spots around their feet and between their stick and body. Played in every key situation. Made everyone better and is a coach’s dream. Prepared and consistent player.”
Molenaar finished the 2017-18 season playing for the Aberdeen Wings of the NAHL, the same team current Husky Kevin Fitzgerald played for in 2016-17. He was drafted 62nd overall by the Tri-City Storm in the 2018 USHL Entry Draft.
It is assumed Molenaar will play at least a season of Junior hockey before joining the Huskies.
GRAND RAPIDS JACK PEART COMMITS TO SCSU
Mobile, puck-moving defenseman, Jack Peart of Grand Rapids, MN announced via Twitter on June 4th his commitment to St. Cloud State University. He announced, “Honored to announce my commitment to play college hockey at St. Cloud State University. Thanks to my teammates, family, and coaches.”
The ’03 birth-date Peart has been opening eyes in hockey circles and was recently ranked as a top-ten American player eligible to be drafted by Canada’s Western Hockey League in their recent draft. Typically, US players do not go that route preferring to play in the United States. Neutral Zone, a well-known ranking and profiling service recently noted “A heady offensive defender who lacks size but not strength or power. He shows a tremendous amount of puck poise, eyes are always up, waiting out defenders for lanes to open or quickly finding teammates from long distance. Not afraid to rush the puck up ice, Peart is always involved in the offense. He has a hard shot but accuracy isn’t always a strength, but he gets his chances every view we saw. Nearly every puck touch is a positive one with Jack. Defends very well, smart angles, active stick, in shooting lanes, strong awareness, and ability to separate players off the puck with stick or body. He plays the style the game calls for. Another early NCAA commit player and USNTDP Camp invite.” Further, Neutral Zone had him ranked as one of three “A” rated Minnesota players at defense in their “Top 55 rankings.” If one was to characterize his game it does show similarities to UMD’s outstanding young defenseman, Scott Perunovich. However, time will tell if that comparison will stick.
Peart is the second Grand Rapids player to commit to SCSU joining former Grand Rapids High School star and forward Micah Miller who will be joining the Huskies this season. Miller competed for the Sioux City Musketeers in 2017-18.
In throwing his commitment to the Huskies Peart told me “they have a great coaching staff and a great program and (St. Cloud is) just a great hockey town in general”.
CENTERICEVIEW 2018-19 SCSU ROAD TRIP RANKING
I’ve been a St. Cloud State University hockey road warrior since 1986 and have literally been to nearly every hockey venue the team has visited since. As such, it probably gives me a bit of credibility to compile a list of the top destinations for SCSU hockey fans to attend during the 2018-19 season. Keeping in mind that fans have different travel budgets and tastes my list won’t be suited to every fan. Unfortunately, this season only allows 4 of 9 road trip destinations to be traveled to by car and that includes Western Michigan which is a journey of about 9 hours. Thus, with a tremendous road trip schedule this may be the year to dig into the piggy bank and consider a flying trip. These rankings take into consideration ease of travel, budget, attractions and expected competitiveness of the contests. So, with that said here’s my list of the top road trip destinations (with comments) for SCSU hockey fans for the 2018-19 season: MORE HERE
SCSU RECRUIT NOLAN WALKER FOLLOWING THE TRAIL OF NIC DOWD
St. Cloud, MN – St. Cloud State University recruit Nolan Walker has covered a lot of ground in his young hockey career. The 19 year-old Anchorage, Alaska native has taken his skill set to Culver, Indiana for three seasons prior to landing in Sioux Falls, South Dakota for the 2017-18 season. That prepped him for his next move to St. Cloud, MN to continue his hockey career with Brett Larson’s Huskies of the National Collegiate Hockey Conference. One of the top offensive threats in the USHL this past season, Walker is described by some as the top offensive player in the league when it comes to his overall skill level.
FINLAND'S VALTTERI PIIRONEN COMMITS TO SCSU
St. Cloud, MN – For the second consecutive day, the St. Cloud State University Huskies have received a commitment from a Finnish junior hockey player. Valtteri Piironen announced via Twitter on May 10 ” I am really excited to announce my commitment to University of St Cloud State!! And I am so exited to go to the Sioux Falls Stampede next season!” The 6’3″ 185 pound left-shooting defenseman is a native of Pyhaselka, Finland and skated for Lukko U18 squad of the Jr B SM-Sarja league in 2017-18. The seventeen year-old posted 3 goals and 14 assists for 17 points in 48 games. He also had 1 point in 3 league playoff games. He also has competed internationally with the Team Finland U17 team.
FINNISH JUNIOR HOCKEY STAR ANNOUNCES COMMITMENT TO SCSU
St. Cloud, MN – The SCSU Huskies pipeline to Finland apparently is still alive and well with the announced commitment of Finnish Junior hockey star Jami Krannila. Krannila announced via Twitter on May 9 “Proud and excited to announce my commitment to play hockey at the St. Cloud State University. I would like to thank all my friends, family, teammates and coaches for helping me get to this point in my career.” The 5′ 10″ 150 pound left-shooting centerman is a native of Nokia, Finland and skated for Tappara U18 squad of the Jr B SM-Sarja league. He was the leading scorer on the team posting 24 goals and 41 assists for 65 points in 46 games. He also had 4 points in 4 league playoff games. Marco Bombino of McKeens Hockey, a scouting service described Krannila as a “smooth, quick skater with strong offensive skills and instincts. He’s somewhat lightweight but deceptive with the puck and can stickhandle and maneuver in tight spaces. Has an accurate wrist shot. He anticipates the play really well, both with and without the puck, and knows where his teammates are on the ice in order to feed them the puck. Krannila plays in all situations for his team”. MORE HERE
2018-19 SCSU MEN'S HOCKEY SCHEDULE
The St. Cloud State University Huskies of the National Collegiate Hockey Conference have provided its TENTATIVE schedule for the 2018-19 season. Please note times have not been finalized due to TV arrangements being finalized. St. Cloud State will have 12 scheduled conference series not including the playoffs. The non-conference schedule and dates include Alaska, Northern Michigan, Boston College, Northeastern, Bemidji State and an appearance in the Three Rivers Classic in Pittsburgh.They will have 6 home and 6 away conference series. They will play home and home series with Minnesota-Duluth, Omaha, Miami, Colorado College and Western Michigan and single series with North Dakota (Away only) and Denver (Home only). The non-conference schedule includes home series with Northern Michigan and Bemidji State. The Huskies will travel to Alaska, Boston and Pittsburgh for other non-conference contests. MORE HERE
SO FAR SO GOOD...MOMENTUM BUILDING AT SCSU
St. Cloud, MN- The announcement by senior to be and SCSU hockey captain Jimmy Schuldt on April 30th that he would be returning for his final season was met with a sigh of relief by Husky nation. Never one to draw a lot of attention to himself Schuldt stated simply “Junior year in the books. Exited for one more…”. This set off a flurry of relief and excitement by SCSU hockey fans on social media to see the Top Ten Hobey Baker finalist turn his focus from an early signing in the NHL to that of trying to win a national championship for SCSU. One comment on Twitter that caught my eye was from long-time Husky fan Tom Pajunen who commented ” Jimmy Schuldt is quite the young man. What a role model for young players everywhere. Showing education, team and commitment come first. I am sure he has some proud parents”. Even SCSU Assistant Coach Mike Gibbons couldn’t contain his enthusiasm tweeting “Wow! What a player, what a leader”. Schuldt’s decision mirrors that of former outstanding Denver University defensemen, Will Butcher, a Hobey Baker winner in 2016-17 and currently with the New Jersey Devils. Butcher also opted to remain with the Pioneers for his senior season and led the Pioneers to a NCAA championship in 2017. Schuldt told the St. Cloud Times “In my heart the whole time, though, I knew this was the right spot for me for another year. I want to get my degree and try to win a national championship. We have a chance to do that I think we have the team for it.” He’s also a shoe-in to make the 100 point club at SCSU as he’ll be entering the 2018-19 season with 83 points (28 goals, 55 assists).
UMD'S LARSON NAMED SCSU HOCKEY MEN'S HOCKEY COACH
St. Cloud, MN- St. Cloud State Athletics will announce via a press conference today that Brett Larson has been installed as the third head men’s hockey during the Division I era at SCSU. Larson, 45, was most recently an assistant hockey coach at 2017-18 National Champion University of Minnesota-Duluth Bulldogs. A graduate of Duluth Denfeld High School, Larson played defense for the Bulldogs from 1991-92 to 1994-95. Following his playing days at UMD Larson played professional hockey in various leagues including the ECHL, IHL, WCHL and three years in Europe.
Larson began his coaching career in 2008-09 as an assistant with the UMD Bulldogs. After three season, he assumed the head coaching position for the Sioux City Musketeers of the United States Hockey League where he compiled a 52-60-0 record. He then moved on to Ohio State University as Associate head coach for the 2013-14 and 2014-15 season helping to recruit some of the players on the 2017-18 Frozen Four Buckeye team. He then returned to UMD and most recently has been a member of the staff for two seasons. Larson has been a member of the coaching staff for both the 2011 and 2018 National Championship Bulldog squads. Additionally, Larson, served as the head coach for gold medal-winning Team USA at the 2012 World Junior A Challenge. He captained the Bulldogs during his senior year in 1994-95 when he attained Western Collegiate Hockey Association All-Academic Team recognition for a third straight time and also landed the team’s Community Service Award. Selected in the 11th round by the Detroit Red Wings in the 1990 National Hockey League draft, Larson went on to skate 12 years in the professional ranks, including two (1990-2001) as a player-coach with the San Diego Gulls of the now-defunct West Coast Hockey League. He also did time with the Colonial Hockey League’s Madison Monsters, the East Coast Hockey League’s Louisville Riverfrogs, the International Hockey League’s Utah Grizzlies, Las Vegas Thunder and Long Beach Ice Dogs in addition to spending another five years in Denmark, Germany and England. He wrapped up his playing days in 2006-07 as a player/assistant coach for the Florida Seals of the Southern Professional Hockey League before that Orlando-based franchise folded at mid-season.
Scott Sandelin told the Duluth News Tribune “I brought him out of pharmaceutical sales to come and coach and the next thing you know he’s a head coach in Sioux City,” Sandelin said Tuesday of when he first hired Larson in 2008. “He’s a good people person. He’s really grown. I remember when he came in. He was still learning the ropes. That’s the good thing about coaching. He’s had some different experiences. He knows what it is to be a head coach having done Sioux City. I think that’s important when you look at moving on and potentially being a head coach. It’s a little different when you’re sitting in that chair vs. being an assistant.”
Steve Rohlik, Head coach at Ohio State University remarked “(He’s) A guy that cares, a guy that’s honest, a guy that the guys buy into,” Rohlik said about Larson prior to the Frozen Four. “He can walk out, sit in your living room, and you know he cares about you. He’s going to go out there and work hard. He gets along with everybody. In this business, there’s no off button and he’s willing to do whatever it takes to go out there and win.”
Larson replaces Bob Motzko who skippered the Huskies for 13 seasons before accepting the head coaching position at the University of Minnesota in late March. And thus, a new era begins for the 2018-19 season with the hiring of Larson. LISTEN HERE BRETT LARSON ON WHY SCSU
2017-18 SEASON ARCHIVED STORIES
UMD STORYBOOK SEASON CAN ONLY END ONE WAY
FROZEN FOUR: INCLUDE ME AS A DOUBTER - UMD AND NOTRE DAME ADVANCE TO THE BIG SHOW
2018 FROZEN FOUR...A VIEW FROM CENTER ICE
MOTZKO MOVES ON TO THE MAROON AND GOLD ...SOME THOUGHTS
AIR FORCE TOPPLES SCSU 4-1 IN WEST REGION
2018 NCAA WEST REGION PREVIEW
HUSKIES TUMBLE IN FROZEN FACEOFF CHAMPIONSHIP 4-1
3-2 OVERTIME WIN SENDS SCSU TO FROZEN FACEOFF CHAMPIONSHIP
SCSU'S SCHULDT A TOP TEN FINALIST FOR THE HOBEY BAKER AWARD
FROZEN FACEOFF PREVIEW 2018
SCSU 4 MIAMI 3 OT: HUSKIES ARE OFF TO THE FROZEN FACEOFF
HUSKIES SUFFER 3-2 LOSS IN OVERTIME TO MIAMI
HUSKIES TAKE GAME ONE OF THE NCHC PLAYOFFS VS MIAMI 5-2
HUSKIES HOST MIAMI IN NCHC QUARTERFINALS
SCSU AND UND SKATE TO 2-2 TIE IN SEASON FINALE
POEHLING, HRENAK UPEND NORTH DAKOTA 4-3 IN OT
HUSKIES FINISH THE REGULAR SEASON SCHEDULE AT NORTH DAKOTA
SCSU 4 DENVER 2...HUSKIES CAPTURE PENROSE CUP
HUSKIES AND PIONEERS SKATE TO 1-1 TIE
SHOWDOWN: #1 SCSU HOSTS #3 DENVER IN MARQUEE MATCHUP
THIRD PERIOD RALLY NETS SCSU 4-2 WIN OVER BRONCOS
HUSKIES AND BRONCOS SKATE TO 5-5 TIE
HUSKIES FACE ANOTHER TOUGH ROAD TRIP AT WESTERN MICHIGAN
HRENAK GETS SHUTOUT AND HUSKIES SWEEP MIAMI 4-0
HUSKIES NAIL DOWN 5-2 ROAD WIN OVER MIAMI
HUSKIES HIT THE ROAD TO FACE MIAMI IN KEY WEEKEND
6-2 WIN GIVES HUSKIES A SWEEP OF #13 OMAHA
HUSKIES GRIND OUT 5-3 WIN OVER #13 OMAHA
HUSKIES HOST OMAHA IN ANOTHER KEY NCHC SERIES
SCSU GAINS SPLIT WITH 2-1 WIN OVER BULLDOGS
HUSKIES STRUGGLES CONTINUE IN 5-1 LOSS TO UMD
SCSU TO FACE SURGING BULLDOGS IN KEY NCHC SERIES
MAVERICKS GAIN CONVINCING 5-2 ROAD WIN OVER THE HUSKIES
HUSKIES TO HOST MSU MANKATO ON HOCKEY DAY MINNESOTA
HUSKIES EDGE WESTERN MICHIGAN 4-3 FOR SERIES SPLIT
SECOND PERIOD RALLY DOOMS HUSKIES IN 7-5 LOSS TO WMU
HUSKIES TO HOST #12 WESTERN MICHIGAN IN CONFERENCE PLAY
ROBSON SECURES 2-0 WIN FOR THE GOPHERS OVER SCSU
SCSU SKATES TO CONVINCING 5-2 WIN OVER #10 GOPHERS
#1 HUSKIES TO FACE #10 MINNESOTA IN WEEKEND HOME AND HOME
HUSKIES SALVAGE ANOTHER TIE WITH PRINCETON 2-2
HUSKIES SKATE TO 3-3 TIE WITH PRINCETON
NEW JERSEY BOUND HUSKIES FACE THE PRINCETON TIGERS
FORMER SCSU GOALTENDER DRISCOLL COMMITS TO BEMIDJI STATE
SCSU VS NORTH DAKOTA PART III
HUSKIES RECAPTURE FIRST PLACE WITH 3-1 WIN OVER UND
HUSKIES BATTLE NORTH DAKOTA TO 2-2 OVERTIME TIE
EARLY SEASON SHOWDOWN FEATURES #2 SCSU VS #5 UND
ROOKIES EXCEEDING EXPECTATIONS FOR SCSU
HUSKIES SWEEP OMAHA WITH 5-0 ROAD WIN
HUSKIES HANG ON FOR 7-4 ROAD WIN OVER OMAHA
COLLEGE HOCKEY NATION: EPISODE 4 POEHLING BROTHERS
Here's an excellent segment on SCSU's Poehling brothers featured on WATCH ESPN for College Hockey Nation View Video
BACK TO WORK...HUSKIES HIT THE ROAD TO FACE OMAHA
BACK ON TRACK HUSKIES SWEEP TIGERS 5-1
HUSKIES DOMINATE IN 6-1 WIN OVER COLORADO COLLEGE
HUSKIES TO FACE RESURGENT CC TIGERS IN HOME SERIES
PIONEERS COMPLETE SWEEP OF SCSU 5-1
PIONEERS SNAP STREAK WITH 4-2 WIN OVER SCSU
HUSKIES FACE HUGE ROAD TEST VS #3 DENVER
HRENAK GETS SHUTOUT AND HUSKIES SWEEP UMD
HUSKIES FIGHT OFF BULLDOGS 5-3 IN NCHC OPENER
#2 HUSKIES CLASH WITH #8 BULLDOGS IN NCHC OPENER
HRENAK AND HUSKIES DEFEAT BOSTON COLLEGE 3-1 FOR SWEEP
ANOTHER HUSKIES RALLY AND ANOTHER WIN - SCSU 5 BC 2
HUSKIES TO HOST BOSTON COLLEGE IN ST. CLOUD THIS WEEKEND
HUSKIES GET OVERTIME WIN TO SWEEP NANOOKS
EPIC COMEBACK BY SCSU DERAILS NANOOKS 6-3
HUSKIES HOST ALASKA NANOOKS IN NON-CONFERENCE SERIES
SCSU VS MSU Part II
HUSKIES SMITH AND DEFENSE SHUT DOWN MAVERICKS 4-0
HUSKIES TO FACE MAVERICKS IN KEY SEASON OPENER
BUCS FORWARD SAM HENTGES COMMITS TO SCSU
SCSU VS U OF REGINA PART II
LIZOTTE AND SCSU BURY REGINA 8-0 IN EXHIBITION
HUSKIES TO OPEN 2017-18 SEASON WITH EXHIBITION VS REGINA
JUNIOR CLASS READY TO LEAD SCSU INTO 2017-18 SEASON
HUSKIES RELOAD WITH 2017-18 CLASS OF RECRUITS
SCSU NETS ANOTHER LOCAL PLAYER IN SARTELL'S MEIER
ST. CLOUD CATHEDRAL'S NATE WARNER COMMITS TO SCSU
MONTICELLO STAR BEN WARD COMMITS TO THE HUSKIES
SCSU's DRISCOLL DEPARTS FOR JUNIOR HOCKEY
CENTERICEVIEW SCSU ROAD TRIP RANKING 2017-18
THREE SCSU HUSKIES SELECTED IN 2017 NHL ENTRY DRAFT
SCSU'S POEHLING SELECTED IN FIRST ROUND BY MONTREAL
HUSKIES SNARE ANOTHER DEFENSEMAN IN BRADY ZIEMER
HUSKIES GET RARE MJHL RECRUIT IN TYLER ANDERSON
ST. CLOUD NATIVE WILL HAMMER COMMITS TO THE HUSKIES
SCSU HOCKEY UPDATES FROM THE VIEW (4/21/2017)
SCSU HOCKEY UPDATES FROM THE VIEW
2017-18 SCSU MEN'S HOCKEY NCHC CONFERENCE SCHEDULE
FUTURE HUSKIES SCORE WELL IN USHL
DENVER IS 2017 FROZEN FOUR CHAMPION
BULLDOG RALLY FALLS SHORT IN FROZEN FOUR TITLE GAME
RYAN PAPA TO TRANSFER TO ATLANTIC CONFERENCE TEAM
FROZEN FOUR: DENVER DOMINATES IN 6-1 WIN OVER NOTRE DAME
FROZEN FOUR: BULLDOGS WIN ANOTHER CLOSE ONE 2-1
2017 FROZEN FOUR - A VIEW FROM CENTER ICE
CHOLOWSKI DEPARTS AFTER ONE SEASON AT SCSU
SCSU HUSKY UPDATES FROM THE VIEW
DENVER DOMINATES IN WIN OVER PSU TO ADVANCE TO FROZEN FOUR
OVERTIME WIN SENDS BULLDOGS TO FROZEN FOUR
JONNY BRODZINSKI GETS CALL TO LA KINGS..BRINGS BACK MEMORIES
UMD CAPTURES FROZEN FACEOFF CHAMPIONSHIP IN THRILLER
NCHC FROZEN FACEOFF: UND EDGES DENVER 1-0 IN EPIC BATTLE
NCHC FROZEN FACEOFF: UMD ADVANCES WITH 5-2 WIN OVER WMU
2017 NCHC FROZEN FACEOFF PREVIEW
NCHC PLAYOFFS: HUSKIES SEASON ENDS IN 6-5 OT LOSS TO UND
NCHC PLAYOFFS: HUSKIES DROP GAME ONE TO UND 5-2
HUSKIES FACE SEASON DECIDING SERIES IN NCHC PLAYOFFS VS UND
CC TIGERS DERAIL THE HUSKIES 2-1
HUSKIES OUTLAST THE TIGERS 5-2
SCSU TO HOST COLORADO COLLEGE IN REGULAR SEASON FINALE
SCSU BURIED 7-2 BY TOP-RANKED DENVER
HUSKIES COMEBACK FALLS SHORT IN 4-3 OT LOSS TO #1 DENVER
HUSKIES HIT THE ROAD TO FACE LEAGUE LEADER AND #1 DENVER
SCSU HOCKEY UPDATES FROM THE VIEW
SCSU HUSKIES GET DEFENSIVE ABOUT THEIR GAME
WAHLIN, HUSKIES EARN 3-1 WIN AND SWEEP OVER THE REDHAWKS
THIRD PERIOD RALLY LIFTS SCSU OVER MIAMI 4-2
HUSKIES FACE REDHAWKS IN ST. CLOUD THIS WEEKEND
UND COMEBACK NETS A 2-1 OVERTIME WIN OVER SCSU
SCSU VS UND FRIDAY THOUGHTS
SCSU SNAGS KEY ROAD WIN AT NORTH DAKOTA
HUSKIES TO FACE ANOTHER CHALLENGE IN #13 UND THIS WEEKEND
NORTH STAR COLLEGE CUP PART III
BULLDOGS CAPTURE NORTH STAR CUP WITH 2-1 OT WIN OVER SCSU
NCHC RULES: SCSU AND UMD ADVANCE TO NORTH STAR CUP FINAL
HUSKIES TO DEFEND TITLE IN NORTH STAR COLLEGE CUP
PIONEERS REBOUND FOR 3-1 WIN OVER HUSKIES
POEHLINGS LEAD SCSU TO 3-2 OT WIN OVER TOP-RANKED DENVER
HUSKIES FACE ANOTHER CHALLENGE IN TOP-RANKED DENVER
SCSU VS UMD PART III
BULLDOGS RALLY FOR 4-3 OVERTIME WIN OVER SCSU
SMITH, HUSKIES GAIN KEY ROAD WIN 2-1 OVER #3 UMD
SCSU VS MIAMI PART III
POWER PLAY FIZZLES AS HUSKIES ARE SWEPT 4-1 BY MIAMI
FIVE MINUTE MAJOR SINKS HUSKIES 3-2 IN OVERTIME LOSS TO MIAMI
PREVIEW: HUSKIES RETURN TO NCHC PLAY VS MIAMI REDHAWKS
ASU DESERT CLASSIC PART III
HUSKIES EDGE SUN DEVILS 4-2 IN DESERT CLASSIC
SCSU DROPS DESERT CLASSIC OPENER TO UCONN 4-3
HUSKIES HEAD WEST TO THE ASU DESERT CLASSIC TOURNAMENT
SCSU'S AHCAN SELECTED TO FINAL TEAM USA WJC ROSTER
SCSU'S JENSEN MAKES NHL DEBUT
SCSU RECRUIT BLAKE LIZOTTE QUIETLY CLIMBING THE CHARTS
BRODZINSKI GETS UNTRACKED IN MADISON
SCSU REBOUNDS FOR 4-2 WIN AND WEEKEND SPLIT WITH OMAHA
WENINGER AND MAVERICKS EDGE HUSKIES 3-1
HUSKIES BACK HOME FOR WEEKEND SERIES WITH #20 OMAHA
SCSU HUSKIES VS WMU BRONCOS PART III
HUSKIES SKATE TO 5-5 OVERTIME ROAD TIE WITH WMU
DRISCOLL GETS ROAD SHUTOUT OF WMU BRONCOS 3-0
SCSU HUSKIES FACE RESURGENT WMU BRONCOS
SCSU HUSKIES VS UND FIGHTING HAWKS PART III
SCSU SHUTOUT 3-0 AND NORTH DAKOTA SWEEPS WEEKEND
NORTH DAKOTA SHUTS OUT THE HUSKIES 4-0
SCSU HUSKIES VS CC TIGERS PART III
HUSKIES EARN NCHC SWEEP WITH 4-1 WIN OVER TIGERS
HUSKIES BURY THE TIGERS 7-3
SCSU HUSKIES VS UMD BULLDOGS PART III
ANOTHER 5-3 BULLDOG WIN AND SWEEP OF THE HUSKIES
BULLDOGS THIRD PERIOD RALLY EDGES SCSU 5-3
SCSU VS UAH CHARGERS PART III
ANOTHER RALLY AND 5-2 WIN AND SWEEP OF UAH
BIG THIRD PERIOD NETS 5-1 SCSU WIN OVER CHARGERS
ANOTHER COMEBACK, ANOTHER WIN AND A SWEEP OF #7 MINNESOTA
CRAZY COMEBACK NETS 6-5 OVERTIME WIN OVER MINNESOTA
MAVERICKS DEFEAT HUSKIES 6-4 FOR WEEKEND SWEEP
MAVERICKS SNAP STREAK WITH 4-1 WIN OVER #7 HUSKIES
KEEP AN EYE ON THESE NCHC ROOKIES IN 2016-17
CENTERICEVIEW SCSU ROAD TRIP RANKING FOR 2016-17
SCSU MENS HOCKEY SEASON PREVIEW 2016-17
SCSU HUSKIES REBUILD WITH SKILLED RECRUITS IN 2016-17
SCSU ANNOUNCES BROADCAST TEAM FOR MENS HOCKEY
This site was born in April 2003