Weekly Wednesday update

All signs are pointing to Boston University having no trouble getting to Grand Forks this weekend. Flights at Boston Logan are back on as scheduled and the Terriers are expected to arrive tomorrow.

Another good sign: Their gear has already arrived. They shipped it today.

As for the team, it’s a little bit of an unknown. UND hasn’t played Boston University since 2008, when BU hosted the Ice Breaker to start the season. UND lost to BU 5-1.

BU’s last trip to Grand Forks was December 1996. UND won and tied. Later that year, UND would go on to beat the Terriers 6-4 in the national championship game.

UND is still expected to be without forward Michael Parks, who has been sidelined with a leg injury he sustained in an exhibition game.

For Thursday’s paper, I’m writing about the art on the goalie helmets. It is pretty unique stuff and we had a lot of questions about it during our live chat last week.

For Friday’s paper, I’ll get into the preview material, including the note that former UND star T.J. Oshie and former BU star Kevin Shattenkirk — both now teammates with the St. Louis Blues — are coming to Grand Forks for the series.

The Q&A will be with Bryn Chyzyk, and if you want to get a head start on everything and check out this week’s press conferences, the videos are posted here.

On the women’s side, there’s a huge showdown between No. 9 UND and No. 4 Clarkson. Coach Brian Idalski warned that if UND splits or gets swept, it could mean a huge uphill battle in order to earn an NCAA tournament spot.

Monique Lamoureux also talked a little bit about how frustrating it has been not putting the puck in the net as often as usual. She hasn’t scored a goal in six games now – the longest drought of her career.

Idalski said no further updates on Michelle Karvinen or Leah Jensen, UND’s top-end players who have missed the last few weeks with leg injuries.

Keeping an eye on Hurricane Sandy

Hurricane Sandy will be worth following for UND hockey fans.

The UND men are scheduled to host Boston University and the women are scheduled to host Clarkson (Potsdam, N.Y.) this weekend in two-game series. Both schools have been preparing for an emergency.

Today’s news is a little more encouraging. Boston University re-opened classes at 11 a.m. The updated hurricane forecast projects the storm to be up in Ontario by Thursday, which is when Boston University is scheduled to travel to Grand Forks.

The Clarkson women could still be a little more of an issue since they are still sort of in the path.

Poll time

This week’s polls reveal some pretty highly rated matchups in Ralph Engelstad Arena this weekend. No. 5/6 UND hosts No. 12 Boston University. On the women’s side, No. 9 UND hosts No. 4 Clarkson.

USCHO poll

1 Boston College (38) 4- 1-0 981 1
2 Minnesota ( 3) 4- 1-0 924 2
3 Denver ( 6) 4- 0-0 862 5
4 Miami 4- 1-1 792 3
5 North Dakota 2- 1-1 769 4
6 Cornell 2- 0-0 739 7
7 Notre Dame 5- 1-0 677 9
8 Michigan 3- 2-0 663 6
9 New Hampshire ( 2) 4- 0-1 597 12
10 Union ( 1) 3- 1-1 596 8
11 Western Michigan 3- 1-0 529 10
12 Boston University 3- 1-0 487 13
13 Harvard 1- 0-0 291 17
14 Massachusetts-Lowell 1- 3-1 239 11
15 Northeastern 2- 2-1 227 15
16 St. Lawrence 3- 1-0 180 NR
17 Minnesota-Duluth 2- 3-1 172 14
18 St. Cloud State 4- 2-0 162 NR
19 Ferris State 2- 2-2 146 18
20 Northern Michigan 3- 3-0 131 16

Others receiving votes: Providence 66, Colorado College 53,
Quinnipiac 45, Wisconsin 44, Yale 27, Holy Cross 23, Alaska
16, Dartmouth 15, Bemidji State 12, Lake Superior 7, Ohio
State 5, Michigan State 4, Michigan Tech 3, Nebraska-Omaha
3, Colgate 1.

USA Today poll

1 Boston College, 504 (28)
2 University of Minnesota, 459
3 University of Denver, 417 (5)
4 Miami University, 389
5 Cornell University, 355
6 University of North Dakota, 345
7 University of Michigan, 300
8 University of Notre Dame, 277
9 Union College, 240 (1)
10 University of New Hampshire, 204
11 Western Michigan University, 194
12 Boston University, 144
13 Harvard University, 77
14 UMass Lowell, 60
15 St. Lawrence University, 31

Others receiving votes: Northeastern University, 23; University of Minnesota Duluth, 21; Ferris State University, 19; St. Cloud State University, 13; Northern Michigan University, 3; Providence College, 3; Quinnipiac University, 1; University of Wisconsin, 1.

Women’s USCHO poll

1 Minnesota (15) 10- 0-0 150 1
2 Cornell 4- 1-0 129 2
3 Boston University 7- 1-0 119 3
4 Clarkson 7- 1-0 105 4
5 Mercyhurst 8- 1-1 92 5
6 Harvard 2- 0-0 54 9
7 Northeastern 5- 1-1 53 7
8 Boston College 2- 3-0 45 6
9 North Dakota 4- 4-0 33 8
10 Ohio State 7- 3-0 20 NR

Others receiving votes: Wisconsin 12, Minnesota-Duluth 11,
Providence 1, St. Lawrence 1.

Women’s final: Minnesota 4, UND 2

Michelle Karvinen and Leah Jensen are both still out for UND. Amanda Kessel is back in the lineup for Minnesota

First period

Minnesota 1, UND 0 — Amanda Kessel (Hannah Brandt) 1:24. Kessel isn’t matched up against the Lamoureux twins on her first shift and she takes advantage, cutting from the left circle and taking it to the net.

Second period

Minnesota 1, UND 1 — Meghan Dufault (Becca Kohler, Josefine Jakobsen) 4:12. Kohler has a dominant shift and it leads to a goal when she pulls the puck around a Minnesota defender and snaps a shot. Raty makes the save, but Dufault crashes the net and flips a backhand in for her first-career goal.

Minnesota 2, UND 1 — Amanda Kessel (Mira Jalosuo, Hannah Brandt) 12:52. Jalosuo snapped a shot from the point. Kessel stopped it on top of the crease, moved it to her backhand and put it away.

Minnesota 3, UND 1 — Kelly Terry (Amanda Kessel, Megan Bozek) 16:45 (pp). UND’s penalty killers get caught out for a lengthy time and Minnesota takes advantage, when Terry takes the puck hard to the net from the low left circle. Terry’s initial attempt is stopped, but she buries the rebound.

Minnesota 3, UND 2 — Meghan Dufault (Josefine Jakobsen, Monique Lamoureux) 17:54 (pp). Jakobsen sets up with the puck on top of the right circle and finds Dufault with a cross-crease pass. Dufault one-times it into the open side of the net.

Third period

Minnesota 4, UND 2 — Milica McMillen (Hannah Brandt, Megan Bozek) 15:38 (pp). Minnesota takes advantage of a 5×3 power play late in the game and ices it on a goal-mouth scramble.

Saturday night rewind

Five items of note:

1. The Bemidji hex continues for Nebraska Omaha. The Mavs have 1 win in 12 games against the Beavers since joining the WCHA. Bemidji State earned three points this weekend, including a 3-2 win Saturday night.

2. New Hampshire and Northeastern played to a rare 0-0 tie. Northeastern goalie Bryan Mountain had a 44-save shutout. UNH goalie Casey DeSmith had a 34-save shutout.

3. Lake Superior State drew 3,747 fans — its largest crowd in 12 years — to watch a 4-2 loss to Michigan State. Lake State was hoping for its first sellout since 1996.

4. UND’s next opponent, Boston University, rallied from a 2-0 deficit to win 3-2 against UMass and complete a series sweep.

5. Roseau’s Jason Fabian scored two goals to lead Air Force to a 4-1 win over Robert Morris. Fabian now has four goals in six games this season to lead the Falcons.

Top WCHA performers

2 points — David Boehm, BSU, 2 goals
2 points — Dennis Rix, MTU, 2 goals
2 points — Cory Thorson, SCSU, 2 goals

UND 3, Anchorage 3, tie

UND gave up a third-period lead, but managed to get a point out of the night as Derek Forbort scored an extra-attacker goal with 1:08 remaining. Game stories:

Grand Forks Herald

UNDsports.com

USCHO

Other notes:

  •  The long review on Forbort’s game-tying goal was to see if Corban Knight touched it with a high stick before going in the net. MidcoSN had one camera angle that clearly showed the shot going off of the glove of an Anchorage forward and that it completely missed Knight’s stick. Referee Butch Mousseaux conferred with the linesmen to make sure and they got the call right.
  • Rocco Grimaldi was probably the biggest weapon on the ice during the game. He nearly won it in overtime on a play that had the entire crowd standing as it unfolded. I think everyone could sense what was about to happen. That’s the kind of buzz Grimaldi is able to create.
  • Coach Dave Hakstol moved Grimaldi up to the Knight and Danny Kristo line at the end of the game as he shortened the bench and tried to create some momentum. That move seemed to work.
  • The Ralph has been a good place for Forbort this season. Including the two exhibition games, Forbort has scored a goal in each of the four home contests this season.
  • I think tonight’s game was the effort most expected out of Anchorage this series. It was one of those typical, hard-fought, grind-it-out games against the Seawolves. Coach Dave Shyiak called it his team’s best 65 minutes of the year.
  • Shyiak wanted to specifically comment on the outstanding job the refs did in this series. He said that it was a clean game, and the refs let the teams play.
  • Evan Trupp’s younger brother, Hayden, had a quiet weekend at The Ralph. He didn’t register any shots on goal. Then again, Evan always was more of a setup guy than a goal-scorer.
  • Knight, who went 20-8 on draws, is one point shy of 100 for his career.
  • Next weekend, UND will finally get to play a team that’s not from  Alaska.

Gameday final: UND 3, Anchorage 3, tie

Clarke Saunders starting in net tonight. Otherwise no changes for UND. Live chat and full lines are below.

First period

Anchorage 1, UND 0 — Scott Allen (Austin Sevalrud, Alex Gellert) 4:05. Allen lets go of a shot from the left point, Allen tips it in the left circle. Saunders is already sliding the other direction and it goes in glove side.

Anchorage 1, UND 1 — Corban Knight (Danny Kristo, Brendan O’Donnell) 13:39. Highlight-reel passing play for a goal. O’Donnell makes a spin-o-rama pass in the neutral zone to send Kristo in. Kristo makes a great pass to Knight who has a tricky backhand shot from a tough angle, but he puts it just under the bar.

Second period

UND 2, Anchorage 1 — Rocco Grimaldi (Nick Mattson, Andrew MacWilliam) 12:55. Mattson launches a point shot off the post. The rebound trickles into the crease, where Grimaldi crashes and powers it home as he’s getting taken out by Sevalrud.

Third period

UND 2, Anchorage 2 — Tyler Currier 3:19 (sh). Schmaltz loses control of the puck at the blue line, Currier picks it up, fights off a check by Currier and snaps it five-hole to tie the game.

Anchorage 3, UND 2 — Jordan Kwas (Kory Roy, Matt Bailey) 10:25. Kwas snaps a shot from just inside the blue line. Not sure if Saunders was screened by Bailey or not, but the shot goes over his glove.

Anchorage 3, UND 3 — Derek Forbort (Carter Rowney) 18:52 (ex). With the goalie pulled, Forbort snaps a shot from the point that goes off of an Anchorage player’s glove and in the net to tie it.

Overtime

No scoring.

UND’s lines

21 Brendan O’Donnell–10 Corban Knight–7 Danny Kristo
16 Mark MacMillan–27 Carter Rowney–13 Connor Gaarder
9 Drake Caggiula–19 Rocco Grimaldi–17 Colten St. Clair
28 Steph Pattyn–29 Bryn Chyzyk–11 Derek Rodwell

4 Derek Forbort–24 Jordan Schmaltz
2 Andrew MacWilliam–5 Nick Mattson
18 Dillon Simpson–20 Joe Gleason

33 Clarke Saunders
31 Zane Gothberg
35 Tate Maris

Not in lineup: Michael Parks (inj), Coltyn Sanderson, Andrew Panzarella, Dan Senkbeil.

Anchorage’s lines

29 Scott Allen–9 Blake Tatchell–12 Alex Gellert
23 Kory Roy–21 Matt Bailey–17 Jordan Kwas
19 Bobby Murphy–40 Daniel Naslund–10 Brett Cameron
20 Hayden Trupp–26 Tyler Currier–18 Chris Crowell

3 Derek Docken–7 Austin Coldwell
8 Scott Warner–22 Blake Leask
5 Austin Sevalrud–37 Chris Williams

33 Rob Gunderson
35 Chris Kamal

Women’s final: Minnesota 5, UND 1

Notable scratches for today’s game: Michelle Karvinen and Leah Jensen for UND; Amanda Kessel for Minnesota. No line chart posted today because the ones we were given have Karvinen and Kessel posted.

First period

No scoring.

Second period

UND 1, Minnesota 0 — Tori Williams (Mary Loken) :18. Williams launches a point shot through traffic. Raty doesn’t see it until the last second and it goes in stick side.

UND 1, Minnesota 1 — Megan Bozek (Milica McMillen, Hannah Brandt) :57 (pp). Minnesota wastes no time capitalizing on a power play. Bozek launches a point shot through traffic and past Dagfinrud.

Third period

Minnesota 2, UND 1 — Rachael Bona (Hannah Brandt) 12:30. UND had a chance to transition with  numbers, but the puck rolls off the stick of LaShomb and Minnesota goes the other way with numbers. The puck ends up on Bona’s stick in the slot and she buries it.

Minnesota 3, UND 1 — Milica McMillen (Becky Kortum) 4:35. McMillen blasts a shot from the point through traffic. It hits Dagfinrud’s shoulder, but still goes in.

Minnesota 4, UND 1– Baylee Gillanders (Brook Garzone) 16:55. Gillanders shoots a point shot through traffic and it goes in.

Minnesota 5, UND 1 — Hannah Brandt 19:59 (en). Brandt shoots home an empty netter with less than a second left.

No. 1 Minnesota in town for showdown

The UND women’s hockey team is hoping to set an attendance record, and the school is selling tickets for $1 in order to do so.

UND is looking for a big crowd and a lot of support this afternoon (2 p.m., Ralph Engelstad Arena) — and it may need all it can get.

No. 1 Minnesota is in town and the Gophers have been steam-rolling competition so far this season. Their closest game is a 4-0 victory. They are averaging about 7 goals per game, giving up less than a half a goal per game. Average margin of victory: 6.5 goals.

They have the top two scorers in the country in Amanda Kessel and Hannah Brandt. They have arguably the top goaltender in the world in Noora Raty. And they have plenty of confidence, going 22-1 in the last 23 games going back to last season (the one loss was to UND in Minneapolis).

Another example of Minnesota’s domination: The Gophers have been shorthanded 38 times this season. They’ve given up 1 power-play goal and have scored 5 shorthanded goals. So, they are +4 while skating shorthanded.

UND hasn’t been able to get its offense humming like last season and the team has had some ups-and-downs early in the year, so this should be a major test.

I wrote a little about Jordan Slavin in this story. Slavin will finally be able to play in the rivalry game after missing all six meetings last season due to a knee injury. She could play a key role in helping to slow down Minnesota’s potent offense.

We won’t know until game time whether UND will have the services of Michelle Karvinen and Leah Jensen, but those additions would help as well.

Even if they are back in the lineup, it will be a tall task. But UND has beaten Minnesota more than any team in the country in the last two years (5 times), so who knows what will happen this weekend in The Ralph.

We’ll find out the next two afternoons, possibly in front of a record crowd.

Friday night rewind

Five items from around the country:

1. Omaha’s first goal tonight read: Archibald from Zombo. It’s a line that I’m sure Herald writer Virg Foss typed many times during his career. Their fathers, Jim Archibald and Rick Zombo, played together at UND for three seasons from 1981-84. Both went on to play in the NHL.

2. Bemidji rallied from a two-goal deficit to tie Omaha. Since joining the WCHA, Omaha has played the Beavers 11 times, only winning once.

3. Tonight in Duluth, the kiss cam panned the audience. Then as a joke, focused in on Wisconsin assistant coach Bill Butters and UW trainer Andy Hrodey. Butters leaned over and planted one on Hrodey’s cheek and the AmsOil Arena crowd went nuts. Wisconsin won the game 2-0.

4. St. Cloud State forward Drew LeBlanc, a fifth-year senior, is proving why he was one of the most overlooked players in the league coming into the season. He has 9 points in 5 games.

5. Michigan beat Miami 4-2 in a battle of top teams. Star freshman defenseman Jacob Trouba had 2 assists and now has 6 points in 4 games.

Top WCHA performers

4 points — Drew LeBlanc, SCSU, 1 goal, 3 assists
3 points — Danny Kristo, UND, 3 assists
2 points — Ben Hanowski, SCSU, 2 goals
Shutout — Joel Rumpel, UW, 29 saves

UND 4, Anchorage 1

UND finally had 18 skaters in the lineup once again and took advantage of that, rolling four lines (all of which were playing well) in getting a 4-1 win over Alaska Anchorage in the series opener. Game stories:

Grand Forks Herald

FightingSioux.com

USCHO

Other notes:

  • Lines 1, 2 and 3 scored goals. UND coach Dave Hakstol said he thought the fourth line might have been the team’s best. Remember not having a fourth line right winger for the last few months of UND hockey? Now, the fourth line right winger is an NHL draft pick (Derek Rodwell).
  • Bryn Chyzyk played center for the first time. Hakstol was pleased with his performance there.
  • Corban Knight went 11-6 in the faceoff circle. The rest of the team was a woeful 10-22.
  • Anchorage had 4:16 of power play time during the game and did not register any power-play shots. UND had 4:23 of power play time, registered one win, and it went in the net.
  • Jordan Schmaltz had a team-best +2 rating. He’s now at +5 for the season, a team best.
  • Zane Gothberg earned his first win at UND. I thought he looked a little unsure at times of where pucks were, but he got the job done and was very sharp on Anchorage’s partial breakaway. Hakstol said he’s noticed a big progression with Gothberg in the last month.
  • I still think Clarke Saunders is the No. 1 guy and that he will start tonight in the series finale.
  • There wasn’t a lot made about Stephane Pattyn having to sit out the UAF game last Saturday night. But he played with a ton of energy and with an edge that maybe the team lacked that day. He may never score a lot of goals, but his presence in the lineup was very noticeable Friday.
  • Anchorage is averaging 3.7 goals per game against teams not named North Dakota. It is averaging 0.5 goals per game against North Dakota.
  • Chris Kamal and Rob Gunderson have been splitting starts for the Seawolves, so I’d guess we will see Gunderson tonight.
  • With the NHL being locked out, we may see a lot of the big wigs around the college rinks. I was told that Darryl Sutter, the coach of the Stanley Cup champ Kings, was in the house tonight. So was longtime NHLer and director of player personnel for Montreal, Martin Lapointe. Sutter was probably watching Kings draft pick Derek Forbort and Lapointe was watching Habs picks Danny Kristo and Mark MacMillan.