Americans advance to quarterfinals

Michigan defenseman Jack Johnson kept Team USA’s medal hopes alive by scoring an overtime goal to beat Sweden 3-2 on Sunday.

If Team USA would have lost the game, the highest it could have finished is seventh. Instead, the Americans will begin their medal quest at 12:30 p.m. Tuesday against Finland.

Sweden stunned Team USA by tying the game with 14 seconds left, but the Americans took advantage of a power-play opportunity in the five-minute overtime period. The game would have been decided by a shootout if nobody scored in overtime.

The Swedes held a 1-0 lead in the second but the Americans got back-to-back goals by Patrick Kane and Ryan Stoa to take the lead — which held up until the final seconds.

UND defensemen Brian Lee and Taylor Chorney will miss this weekend’s Colorado College series should the Americans beat the Finns. If not, Team USA will be done Thursday and UND coach Dave Hakstol said the coaches will have a decision to make.

The Sioux can have 22 players on their travel roster.

Here is the World Junior bracket:

Quarterfinal: USA vs. Finland (Tuesday, 12:30 p.m.)
Semifinal: Winner vs. Canada (Wednesday, 9 a.m. or 12:30 p.m.)

Quarterfinal: Czech Republic vs. Sweden (Tuesday, 12:30 p.m.)
Semifinal: Winner vs. Russia (Wednesday, 9 a.m. or 12:30 p.m.)

Fifth place game — 9 a.m. Thursday
Bronze medal game — 9 a.m. Friday
Gold medal game — 12:30 p.m. Friday

I believe the rest of Team USA’s games will be on TSN and the NHL Center Ice package. TSN.ca also will be webcasting the games.

Telling stats

For all the stat nerds like myself, here are a few that are very telling for the Sioux this season.

When UND scores four goals: 6-0-0. When it doesn’t: 3-10-1.

When UND gets a goal from the third or fourth line: 7-0-0. When it doesn’t: 2-10-1.

When Scott Foyt plays: 3-0-0. When he doesn’t: 6-10-1.

Gameday final: UND 4, St. Lawrence 2

UND wins the Dartmouth tournament behind two goals from Ryan Duncan and a two-point game by Scott Foyt.

UND’s goals

1. First period — Scott Foyt’s shot from the point misses the net but takes a long rebound off the back boards. Ryan Martens is in the right spot to chip it in.
2. Second period — Foyt scores on a shot from the point.
3. Third period — Ryan Duncan picks his favorite corner on a 5-on-3 power play.
4. Third period — Duncan scores into an empty net.

UND’s lines

Ryan Duncan-T.J. Oshie-Brad Miller
Chris Porter-Matt Watkins-Andrew Kozek
Erik Fabian-Rylan Kaip-Ryan Martens
Chris VandeVelde-Darcy Zajac-Michael Forney

Joe Finley-Robbie Bina
Zach Jones-Chay Genoway
Kyle Radke-Scott Foyt

Phil Lamoureux
Anthony Grieco
Aaron Walski

Hirsch dismissed at Minnesota

University of Minnesota coach Don Lucia said Saturday that forward Tyler Hirsch has been dismissed from the team.

Hirsch was Minnesota’s leading scorer in points per game this season.

"Tyler Hirsch’s hockey career at the University of Minnesota has come to an end," Lucia said. "This is a private and confidential matter between Tyler and the coaching staff, and there will be no further comments from any member of the hockey program or the University of Minnesota. We wish Tyler success in his future endeavors."

For more, see Saturday’s Herald.

Gameday final: UND 4, Dartmouth 1

Abbreviated version.

UND beats Dartmouth 4-1 behind goals by Rylan Kaip (shorthanded), Robbie Bina, Andrew Kozek and Ryan Duncan (shorthanded, empty net).

UND will play St. Lawrence at 6 p.m. in the tournament championship.

Key stats:

Philippe Lamoureux’s save percentage was .962.

The Sioux got a goal from the first line, second line and third line. And coach Dave Hakstol said he was impressed with the fourth line.

The Sioux moved to 6-0-0 when scoring at least four goals.

Dartmouth went 0-for-11 on the power play. UND went 2-for-11 on Dartmouth’s power plays.

The Sioux were forced to kill two lengthy five-on-threes and did it well.

Three keys to Dartmouth tournament

Since I am not in Hanover, there will not be any live scoring updates on the blog. I will attempt to follow the games on the Web cast provided by CN8. If you wish to do the same, check it out here.

I expect the forward lines to be:

16-Ryan Duncan–7-T.J. Oshie–14-Brad Miller
24-Chris Porter–20-Matt Watkins–10-Andrew Kozek
21-Erik Fabian–17-Rylan Kaip–8-Ryan Martens
29-Chris VandeVelde–11-Darcy Zajac–18-Michael Forney

Robbie Bina, Joe Finley, Zach Jones, Chay Genoway, Scott Foyt and Kyle Radke will play on defense.

If the Sioux want to end up in the NCAA tournament this season, winning these games this weekend will be extremely important. Here’s what they need to do (they are all scoring related this weekend):

1. Score four goals per game. As Erik Fabian said earlier this week, the turnaround needs to start up front. If the Sioux start pouring in goals, other mistakes won’t look so big. Four goals per game is above average, but it is doable for this team. UND is 5-0-0 when it scores four goals and 2-10-1 when it doesn’t.

2. Get a goal from the third or fourth line. This will continue to be a goal until UND proves it can get goals from the lower lines. The Sioux have lost seven of their last eight games. It’s not surprising that the one game they did win in the last six weeks also was the one game they got a goal from the third/fourth line.

3. Score a power-play goal each game. The power play hasn’t been a problem for the Sioux, but they have lost nearly every game when they haven’t scored with the extra man (1-4).

Follow Kristo and Cichy

UND recruits Danny Kristo and Michael Cichy will be competing in the Four Nations Cup this weekend in Ann Arbor, Mich.

Kristo (09 recruit) and Cichy (08 recruit) will play for Team USA against Germany (6 tonight), Sweden (6 p.m. Saturday) and Finland (6 p.m. Sunday). The medal games will be played Monday.

Through 27 games, Kristo leads the team in scoring with 10 goals and seven assists for 17 points. Cichy is sixth in scoring with three goals and six assists for nine points.

Follow the Four Nations Cup here.

Info about the new jerseys

If you are curious about the new jerseys that UND may wear this weekend at the Dartmouth tournament, a link to what the Nike PR machine released about the jersey is below. I was going to post the text here, but the word choice and overuse of adjectives is enough to make me sick if I have to look at it on here.

If you can wade through it all, check it out here.

Because the jerseys are black, don’t expect the Sioux to wear them often. The Sioux typically wear black two or three times per season. Anyway, here is photo of the jersey:

Scoring search starts in Dartmouth

Sioux senior Erik Fabian discussed what he thinks is the key for UND in its attempt to turn the season around.

During the process of writing the story, I figured that a 3.00 goals per game average had to be one of the lowest in program history. As I began to research and tally UND’s average in past season, I was somewhat surprised that this is the lowest offensive output ever.

When you interperet these numbers you must look at several things, though.

First off, back in the early days, the schedule was much different. UND used to play against random amateur teams. Also, the days of the 70s and 80s were far different from today’s game. As we saw in the NHL, scoring gradually decreased with the style of play and the increasing size of goalie equipment.

Even so, the stat has to be alarming for the Sioux. In case you are interested in the goals per game per year in Sioux hockey history, I will post them. (Also because it took me like four hours to compile all of these so I feel the need to put them to use).

Lowest-scoring teams in history:

2006-07 — 3.00
2004-05 — 3.02
1973-74 — 3.03
1993-94 — 3.15
1963-64 — 3.16
1974-75 — 3.19
1967-68 — 3.42

Highest-scoring teams in history:

1947-48 — 6.44
1949-50 — 6.39
1978-79 — 5.83
1964-65 — 5.70
1989-90 — 5.60
1986-87 — 5.50
1952-53 — 5.45

Year-by-year:

2006-07 — 3.00
2005-06 — 3.57
2004-05 — 3.02
2003-04 — 4.44
2002-03 — 4.00
2001-02 — 3.62
2000-01 — 3.98
(00s decade average — 3.66)

1999-00 — 4.36
1998-99 — 4.95
1997-98 — 4.82
1996-97 — 4.42
1995-96 — 4.29
1994-95 — 3.87
1993-94 — 3.15
1992-93 — 3.63
1991-92 — 4.36
1990-91 — 4.87
(90s decade average — 4.27)

1989-90 — 5.60
1988-89 — 4.07
1987-88 — 4.14
1986-87 — 5.50
1985-86 — 4.59
1984-85 — 4.81
1983-84 — 4.53
1982-83 — 4.75
1981-82 — 4.64
1980-81 — 4.89
(80s decade average — 4.75)

1979-80 — 5.43
1978-79 — 5.83
1977-78 — 4.53
1976-77 — 5.31
1975-76 — 3.94
1974-75 — 3.19
1973-74 — 3.03
1972-73 — 4.28
1971-72 — 4.47
1970-71 — 3.73
(70s decade average — 4.37)

1969-70 — 3.87
1968-69 — 4.38
1967-68 — 3.42
1966-67 — 3.66
1965-66 — 4.50
1964-65 — 5.70
1963-64 — 3.16
1962-63 — 5.06
1961-62 — 3.77
1960-61 — 3.45
(60s decade average — 4.10)

1959-60 — 4.91
1958-59 — 4.03
1957-58 — 4.97
1956-57 — 4.55
1955-56 — 3.57
1954-55 — 4.11
1953-54 — 4.55
1952-53 — 5.45
1951-52 — 5.04
1950-51 — 4.38
(50s decade average — 4.56)

1949-50 — 6.39
1948-49 — 4.95
1947-48 — 6.44
1946-47 — 4.31
(40s decade average — 5.52)