Gameday final: UND 4, SCSU 2

First period

UND 1, SCSU 0 – Jason Gregoire (Derrick LaPoint, Evan Trupp) 7:47. Gregoire tips LaPoint’s blast from the top of the left circle.

UND 2, SCSU 0 – Andrew Kozek (Mario Lamoureux, Chay Genoway) 11:26. Lamoureux brings the puck in the zone two-on-two and dishes to Kozek in the high slot. Kozek pulls back the puck and gets away one of his wristers and beats Weslosky high to the stick side.

UND 2, SCSU 1 – Ryan Lasch 17:14. Lasch takes the puck off of Miller’s stick, skates into the slot and puts a shot past Chay Genoway, who was trying to block the shot, and by Eidsness.

Second period

UND 3, SCSU 1 – Ryan Duncan (Chay Genoway, Jason Gregoire) 7:23. UND catches a SCSU forward without a stick and keeps the pressure on. Eventually, Duncan gets the puck in the right circle and, believe it or not, goes low blocker. His shot sneaks just inside the post.

Third period

UND 3, SCSU 2 — David Carlisle (Ryan Lasch, Jordy Christian) 4:32. Carlisle attempts to pass it to the slot from the bottom of the left circle, but his pass hits Finley’s stick and gets behind Eidsness.

UND 4, SCSU 2 — Mario Lamoureux (Andrew Kozek, Brad Malone) 9:31. Weslosky can’t control the rebound of a hard wrist shot by Kozek. Lamoureux follows it up and buries the rebound high to the stick side.

Couple of changes in the lines. Lamoureux and Jones in, Toews and Blood out. The black jerseys have been broken out.

UND’s lines

17 Jason Gregoire–16 Ryan Duncan–26 Brett Hextall
20 Matt Watkins–11 Darcy Zajac–8 Ryan Martens
19 Evan Trupp–29 Chris VandeVelde–21 Matt Frattin
9 Mario Lamoureux–22 Brad Malone–10 Andrew Kozek

2 Joe Finley–5 Chay Genoway
3 Derrick LaPoint–25 Jake Marto
6 Zach Jones–14 Brad Miller

31 Brad Eidsness
30 Aaron Walski

Scratched on trip: David Toews, Ben Blood

SCSU’s lines

13 Jordy Christian–17 Aaron Marvin–19 Ryan Lasch
11 Jared Festler–9 Garrett Roe–12 Travis Novak
27 Tony Mosey–29 Drew LeBlanc–21 Brian Volpei
8 Michael Olson–16 Nick Oslund–14 Mitch Ryan

5 Nicholas Rioux–7 Garrett Raboin
3 Sam Zabkowicz–18 Chris Hepp
25 Oliver Lauridsen–28 David Carlisle

33 Jase Weslosky
41 Dan Dunn
36 Nate Hardy

Scratches: John Swanson, Brent Borgen.

Friday postgame

The game stories….

Grand Forks Herald

St. Cloud Times

USCHO.com

And on to a few notes about the game that might not have made it into the gamers…

Jase Weslosky was obviously the story. He was extremely good, making 36 saves. He looked on from the start, when he made a nice glove save on Ryan Duncan. In other games where UND struggled to score, like Michigan Tech at the GLI, goalies left some rebounds that the Sioux weren’t able to get to. Weslosky wasn’t leaving rebounds at all.

–UND got better as the game went on. The Sioux were shaky at the start. Brad Eidsness held them in it early.

–The big period was the second, because St. Cloud State extended its 1-0 lead to 3-0. But the Huskies didn’t get anything going down low in that frame. St. Cloud had 12 shot attempts from outside of the circles and just three inside the circles. UND, by comparison, had 14 shot attempts from outside of the circles and 13 from inside the circles. Of course, none of this really matters.

–One of the biggest surprises was the job St. Cloud State’s fourth line did on the Andrew Kozek-Brad Malone-David Toews line. That line had been dominating for UND in recent games. One of the major reasons for St. Cloud’s success on that fourth line: Husky center Michael Olson went 9-1 on faceoffs, while Malone went 2-7.

–SCSU’s Garrett Roe was held scoreless in Ralph Engelstad Arena last month (the only weekend he’s been held scoreless this season). But he got a goal to go on Friday.

Ryan Duncan had eight shots on goal.

–St. Cloud State is trying to sweep UND in the National Hockey Center for the first time since Nov. 2-3, 2001.

–This was UND’s first loss in a two-game series since November.

–The Sioux will have a two-week break after Saturday night’s game.

–UND is 9-3-1 at REA and 6-8-2 away from its home rink. SCSU is 11-3 at the NHC and 3-8-2 away from it.

Gameday final: SCSU 3, UND 0

First period

SCSU 1, UND 0 — Ryan Lasch (David Carlisle, Michael Olson) 15:17. A wraparound attempt went off of Eidsness’ stick and to the crease, where Lasch was able to sneak it in.

Second period

SCSU 2, UND 0 – Garrett Roe (Travis Novak, Nicholas Rioux) 15:51. Eidsness turns aside Novak’s shot, but Roe picks up the puck behind the net and jams it in with a wraparound before Eidsness can get over to the post.

SCSU 3, UND 0 — Nicholas Rioux (Aaron Marvin, David Carlisle). Rioux gets an open look from the point and slaps one past Eidsness. Not sure if Eidsness was screened on the play.

Third period

Scoreless.

Changes in the lineup from last Saturday: Blood in for Jones, Kozek in for Lamoureux. Jones and Lamoureux are the scratches on the trip.

UND’s lines

17 Jason Gregoire–16 Ryan Duncan–26 Brett Hextall
20 Matt Watkins–11 Darcy Zajac–8 Ryan Martens
19 Evan Trupp–29 Chris VandeVelde–21 Matt Frattin
10 Andrew Kozek–22 Brad Malone–18 David Toews

2 Joe Finley–5 Chay Genoway
3 Derrick LaPoint–25 Jake Marto
24 Ben Blood–14 Brad Miller

31 Brad Eidsness
30 Aaron Walski

SCSU’s lines

13 Jordy Christian–17 Aaron Marvin–19 Ryan Lasch
11 Jared Festler–9 Garrett Roe–12 Travis Novak
26 John Swanson–29 Drew LeBlanc–21 Brian Volpei
22 Brent Borgen–8 Michael Olson–16 Nick Oslund

5 Nicholas Rioux–7 Garrett Raboin
3 Sam Zabkowicz–18 Chris Hepp
25 Oliver Lauridsen–28 David Carlisle

33 Jase Weslosky
41 Dan Dunn
36 Nate Hardy

Friday morning reading

Here are a few stories to read while you wait for the series in the National Hockey Center tonight. I’m told you can access a webcast feed (I think its done by B2 Networks) from St. Cloud State’s homepage at stcloudstate.edu/athletics. I’ll also be there with the live blog running.

The Denver media continues to take shots at Sioux fans, saying that the Pioneers are in a good place heading into the stretch run "thanks to North Dakota and the nasty enviornment it promotes."

Earlier in the week, an FSN reporter complained about behavior such as pounding on the glass at a hockey game and leaving a bad taste in an opponent’s mouth. If I have time next week, I’ll look into allegations of people clapping, too. Everything described in the articles is something you’ll see at every lively college atmosphere. Yes, the Kohl Center included.

Here is today’s hockey notebook in the Herald. It includes info on where UND sits in the national picture, home-ice dominance in the WCHA, Huntsville’s future and Don Lucia’s diagnosis.

Here are four questions with winger Andrew Kozek, who will be back in action tonight.

St. Cloud Times writer Kevin Allenspach answers four questions about the Huskies and the weekend series.

Here’s Thursday’s Herald story about goalie Brad Eidsness, who is quietly moving up the stat rankings in the WCHA. He also leads the country in minutes played.

Tim Campbell of the Winnipeg Free Press was in REA last weekend and wrote a feature about the Manitobans on UND.

Allenspach has a column on Brad Miller in today’s St. Cloud Times.

The Times also has a story about the SCSU rookies, who lead the WCHA in freshman scoring.

Allenspach’s blog also says why this weekend’s series may be high scoring. The teams are ranked among the top in the nation in offense (ever think we’d be saying that about the Sioux back in November?)

One more note — Tonight I talked to Michael Forney, who is in Indiana this weekend for the big Green Bay-Indiana showdown for first place. These are the two best teams in the USHL. Forney, the reigning offensive player of the week, leads Green Bay in scoring with 34 points in 32 games. He also leads the USHL in plus-minus with a plus-22 rating.

Anyway, on to what you are probably wondering about: Forney said that nothing has been finalized or set in stone, but he’s still planning and hoping to be in a Sioux jersey next season. For those interested in seeing him play, he’ll be in Fargo next Friday and Saturday while the Sioux are off.

Weekly Wednesday update

Amid the chaos of last weekend’s series, things were pretty much the norm today in Ralph Engelstad Arena.

For those wondering whether this has become a distraction for the UND team, I think it’s safe to say that it has not. In chatting with a couple of the players about Gwozgate, I found out that they didn’t even know that Denver’s coach had been suspended.

The players and coaches were far more concerned with the St. Cloud State series coming up this weekend. One piece of good info for the Sioux is that winger Andrew Kozek appears to be healthy and good to go for the weekend.

Kozek entered last weekend’s series a little banged up. He played Friday but sat out Saturday. Dave Hakstol praised Kozek’s play on Friday, especially the big hits and the assist to David Toews.

With the way that line has played, I would expect to see Kozek stick with Toews and Brad Malone.

A big development earlier in the day is that Robert Morris and Niagara got approval from Atlantic Hockey. They will be going in for the 2010-11 season. This leaves Bemidji State and Alabama-Huntsville seeking a home. Needless to say, this spring’s application process may determine the future of hockey at BSU.

DU now suspends Gwozdecky

Denver has now suspended coach George Gwozdecky for one game for communicating with his team by headset after being ejected.

Gwozdecky was in violation of NCAA rules when he went up to the press box and communicated via headset to the bench during the third period and overtime of Saturday’s 2-2 tie with UND.

Denver associate athletic director Ron Grahame said in a statement: "Upon further investigation of George’s actions on Jan. 24, we feel a one-game suspension is necessary. George acknowledged that he was in violation of NCAA Rule, Misconduct Penalties, Section 4b. George understands the one-game suspension is warranted and he will serve the suspension this Friday against Alaska Anchorage."

Gwozdecky said in a statement: "I want to apologize to the University of Denver and our hockey team for not having a thorough understanding of the NCAA game misconduct rule. I respect the University’s decision to suspend me based upon the violation that occurred."

Assistant coach Steve Miller will take over for Friday’s game, which is in Denver.

The WCHA released a statement saying that it supports DU’s decision.

Sioux pick up goalie recruit

UND grabbed the AJHL’s leader in save percentage last season. A year later, Brad Eidsness has turned into one of the top rookie goalies in the country.

Why not try it again?

For the second year in a row, the Sioux will be bringing the AJHL’s leader in save percentage to campus. Calgary Canucks goalie Aaron Dell has given a verbal commitment to attend UND beginning next season.

Dell will replace senior Aaron Walski on the roster.

Dell is a 19-year-old from Airdrie, Alta., a city just north of Calgary. Like Eidsness, he’s a big goalie by Sioux standards — 6 feet, 185 pounds.

It’s his second year in the league and he has a 17-13-8 record with a 2.34 goals-against average and a .927 save percentage.

Dell will play in the AJHL All-Star Game this upcoming weekend, which should be one to watch for Sioux fans. Four recruits will be in that game: Dell, forwards Carter Rowney and Corban Knight and defenseman Andrew MacWilliam.

Dell is the third AJHL player the Sioux have landed in the past two weeks.

Look for more updates with quotes later on. In the meantime, three highlight videos of him have made their way onto YouTube. Here you go…

Gwozdecky won’t be suspended

Denver coach George Gwozdecky will not be suspended.

The league just issued a statement saying that it was satisfied with the public statement Denver issued earlier in the day, reprimanding the coach for his behavior.

Denver’s statement read:

The University of Denver does not condone the actions of head hockey coach George Gwozdecky at the 9:30 mark of the second period during the Pioneers’ 2-2 overtime tie against North Dakota on Saturday, Jan. 24 at Ralph Engelstad Arena.

Gwozdecky received a two-minute unsportsmanlike misconduct and 10-minute game misconduct penalty because of his actions.

"We have discussed the incident with George, and he understands that his behavior was unacceptable," DU senior associate director of athletes Ron Grahame said. "George’s actions were very much out of character. We respect the integrity of not only the University of Denver, but the Western Collegiate Hockey Association as well."

The WCHA’s statement said:

The Western Collegiate Hockey Association today endorsed the serious tone taken by the University of Denver and acknowledgement of an issue of unsportsmanlike conduct involving head coach George Gwozdecky in a game on Jan. 24 against the University of North Dakota.

"The Association is pleased the University of Denver echoes the WCHA’s concerns regarding unsportsmanlike conduct," said Bruce M. McLeod, WCHA commissioner. "We appreciate the rapid response the University took in addressing the issue that occurred on January 24 and now consider this matter closed."

On another note, Michigan State suspended forwards Andrew Conboy and Corey Tropp for the rest of the season after an incident against Michigan on Saturday. Read about that here. Conboy is the player who gave Sioux recruit Brett Bruneteau the concussion last season.

Big developments in Atlantic Hockey

College Hockey News writer Adam Wodon is reporting that Atlantic Hockey will vote Tuesday whether to admit Niagara and Robert Morris for the 2010-11 season. Read the story here.

If they get in, it would mean Bemidji State and Alabama-Huntsville will be without a home beginning that season and the futures of both programs would be in peril.

Would this impact the WCHA’s vote on whether to let the Beavers in?