Midco to broadcast the outdoor game

Good news for fans in the area who are not making the trip to Omaha.

The outdoor game next Saturday will be broadcast by Midco Sports Network. The game begins at 4 p.m. Friday night’s game starts at 6:37 p.m. and will be on NBC Sports Network.

They have started work on putting up the outdoor rink and look for a bunch of stories to come on that game soon.

I’ve talked to a lot of fans who say they are making the trip, so there should be a large contingent of UND fans there. I’ll try to get some details on where to tailgate, etc., early next week.

Weekly Wednesday update

It was about a year ago when Wisconsin came to Ralph Engelstad Arena for a two-game set. UND was down to 18 healthy skaters.

This time, the situation is much different for UND.

Everyone is expected to be available for this weekend’s WCHA series against the Badgers. That means more lineup decisions for the coaching staff, trying to find that right combination.

On the Wisconsin side, the Badgers will be missing center Derek Lee, who is out with a concussion, according to the Wisconsin State Journal. Lee is Wisconsin’s second-leading scorer with 19 points (three goals).

During his weekly press conference, Mike Eaves said rookie defenseman Eddie Wittchow will be available, though.

The hot topic this week was UND’s back-to-back one-point weekends. The players were obviously still bothered by how they played on Friday night and know it’s about that time where they have to start playing with more consistency.

One item that’s beginning to be a hot topic among coaches and referees is the diving in college hockey. BU coach Jack Parker was very outspoken about the diving problem around the country earlier this year. UND coach Dave Hakstol also says he believes it’s a big problem.

I talked to WCHA director of officials Greg Shepherd, who agrees that it’s a problem and says that it’s something that he never had to deal with when he was reffing. That story will be in Thursday’s paper.

This week’s Q&A is with Michael Parks, who says he’s finally starting to feel like he’s back to his normal level of play.

On the women’s side, the discussion revolved around the fact that the team has never swept MSU-Mankato in Mankato in program history. A couple of seniors talked about how much they want to accomplish that feat this weekend. That story will be in Friday’s paper.

If you want to check out the weekly live chat, it is below.

Frattin off to strong start

Matt Frattin got sent down to start the season and missed the first three games. He has played in the last three with the Leafs and is already the team’s leading goal scorer and is one point shy of leading the team in overall scoring.

He got there thanks to his two-goal performance Tuesday night, which included his overtime winner with less than two seconds remaining. The video is below.

Poll time

UND men are 10th in the Pairwise and seventh/eighth in the other polls. The women are No. 9 in the Pairwise and in the national poll.

Pairwise Rankings

1. Quinnipiac
2. Minnesota
3. New Hampshire
4. Miami
5. Yale
6. Boston College
7. Western Michigan
8. UMass-Lowell
9. St. Cloud State
10. North Dakota
11. Boston University
12. Alaska Fairbanks
13. Denver
14. Notre Dame
15. Dartmouth
16. MSU-Mankato
17. Niagara
18. Union
19. Colgate
20. Northern Michigan
21. Omaha
22. Ferris State
23. Wisconsin
24. Ohio State
25. Providence

USCHO poll

1 Minnesota (28) 18- 4-4 975 1
2 Quinnipiac (22) 18- 3-3 967 2
3 New Hampshire 15- 6-2 871 4
4 Miami 15- 6-5 835 6
5 Boston College 14- 7-2 771 3
6 Western Michigan 16- 6-4 723 9
7 North Dakota 13- 8-5 633 5
8 Yale 12- 5-3 605 8
9 Notre Dame 16-10-0 564 7
10 Denver 13- 8-4 506 10
11 Boston University 13- 9-1 479 11
12 St. Cloud State 15-10-1 446 16
13 Massachusetts-Lowell 14- 7-2 416 15
14 Nebraska-Omaha 15- 9-2 406 13
15 Minnesota State 16- 9-3 393 14
16 Dartmouth 11- 7-2 302 12
17 Niagara 15- 4-5 180 17
18 Union 13- 8-4 151 19
19 Wisconsin 11- 8-5 127 20
20 Alaska 12- 8-4 69 NR

Others receiving votes: Ferris State 42, Colgate 19,
Providence 11, Cornell 5, Holy Cross 2, Merrimack 1,
Northern Michigan 1.

USA Today poll

1 University of Minnesota, 497 (23)
2 Quinnipiac University, 485 (11)
3 Miami University, 420
4 University of New Hampshire, 417
5 Boston College, 369
6 Western Michigan University, 330
7 Yale University, 290
8 University of North Dakota, 239
9 Boston University, 182
10 University of Denver, 174
11 University of Notre Dame, 169
12 UMass-Lowell, 145
13 St. Cloud State University, 141
14 University of Nebraska-Omaha, 77
15 Minnesota State University, 65

Others receiving votes: Dartmouth College, 43; Niagara University, 17; University of Alaska, 10; Union College, 6; University of Wisconsin, 3; Ferris State University, 1.

Women’s Pairwise Rankings

1. Minnesota
2. Boston College
3. Harvard
4. Boston University
5. Cornell
6. Clarkson
7. Mercyhurst
8. Wisconsin
9. North Dakota
10. Duluth
11. Ohio State
12. Northeastern

Women’s USCHO poll

1 Minnesota (15) 26- 0-0 150 1
2 Boston College 19- 4-2 128 3
3 Harvard 17- 2-1 110 2
4 Boston University 17- 3-3 100 5
5 Cornell 16- 4-0 99 4
6 Clarkson 20- 6-0 78 7
7 Mercyhurst 19- 4-1 68 6
8 Wisconsin 15- 9-2 39 8
9 North Dakota 16-10-0 26 10
10 Minnesota-Duluth 13- 8-3 22 NR

Others receiving votes: Northeastern 5.

Saturday night rewind

Five highlights from around the country:

1. Nebraska-Omaha exercised its Bemidji State demon this weekend by sweeping the Beavers for the first time since they joined the league together. The sons of Sioux — Josh Archibald and Dominic Zombo — scored the goals in a 2-1 Omaha win on Saturday night.

2. Maine, which entered the weekend 5-14-4, pulled off a surprising sweep of Boston College in Boston. The Black Bears completed the sweep with a 3-1 win Saturday. Since Jerry York broke the all-time wins record, the Eagles are 2-5-1.

3. Western Michigan completed the sweep of Michigan with a 5-1 win on Saturday. Mike Cichy had three assists in the game for the Broncos.

4. Minnesota rebounded for a split against MSU-Mankato with a 4-1 victory in Mankato. The Mavs won the opener in Minneapolis. Zach Budish and Nate Schmidt had power-play goals for the Gophers.

5. Wisconsin extended its unbeaten streak in WCHA to 10 games (7-0-3) with a 2-1 win over Anchorage at home. Tyler Barnes and Jefferson Dahl scored early in the second period and Landon Peterson made 21 saves.

WCHA top performers

3 points — Kyle Rau, Minn, 3 assists
2 points — Ben Hanowski, SCSU, 2 goals
2 points — Jefferson Dahl, UW, 1 goal, 1 assist
2 points — Corban Knight, UND, 1 goal, 1 assist
2 points — Danny Kristo, UND, 1 goal, 1 assist
2 points — Zach Budish, Minn, 1 goal, 1 assist
2 points — Erik Haula, Minn, 1 goal, 1 assist

UND 2, St. Cloud State 2

UND rebounded from Friday night’s performance with a strong game Saturday, but only ended up with one point to show for it. Game stories:

Grand Forks Herald

Grand Forks Herald column

St. Cloud Times

USCHO

UNDsports.com

Other notes:

  • After the weekend, UND is 10th in the Pairwise Rankings.
  • UND mixed up the line combinations. I’m not sure if they will stick. The team played significantly better, but UND coach Dave Hakstol credited it to the work ethic they displayed.
  • For as much negative attention that has been placed on the defense, they limited the first-place team in the league to just 17 shots on goal in regulation and 18 shots in 65 minutes. The Huskies’ only goals came when they had a man advantage and the number of Grade A opportunities they produced was extremely low. In all, it was a fairly strong weekend defensively.
  • I still think the goaltending battle is up for grabs. At some point, one of the goalies has to make it a no-brainer decision for the coaching staff like Aaron Dell did two years ago.
  • Dan Senkbeil, Stephane Pattyn and Colten St. Clair had a solid game together. It’s possible that we see those guys again.
  • I think Pattyn wanted to set the tone early by going hard to the net in the first period. He was called for a double minor on the play, but the crowd cheered in approval, happy that UND was showing lots of life early in the game after a lackluster Friday performance.
  • One of the underrated plays of the game belonged to Michael Parks. On UND’s second goal, the St. Cloud State penalty killers were caught out on the ice for the whole two minutes-plus. After the power play expired, a Husky player got the puck and had a chance to get it out of the zone. Knowing they were tired, Parks attacked the player, forced a turnover and it wound up in the back of the net.
  • One guy UND will want to get going for the stretch run is Carter Rowney. He has one goal and three points in the last 10 games. He has frequently had different linemates in search of the right combination. If they can find it and get him going like last year, Rowney could provide a significant boost to the offense.
  • Ben Hanowski, who did not play in the first series between the teams, had three of SCSU’s five goals on the weekend.
  • The Huskies have been able to scratch their way into NCAA tournament contention through their great WCHA play. They now have a seven-game unbeaten streak in league play.
  • Apologies for the late post. Planned on getting it done during the Australian Open final and that didn’t happen.

Gameday final: UND 2, SCSU 2, tie

TONIGHT’S VIEWING: There is NO DirecTV tonight. They dropped it at last minute (insert joke here about last night’s game being so bad). It is on FCS Central and it is on MidcoSN. If you need to webcast it, go to undsports.com. Lineup notes: Chyzyk, Gaarder, Mattson and Saunders are in, Rodwell, Mitch MacMillan, Panzarella and Gothberg are out. Full lines and live chat are below.

First period

St. Cloud State 1, UND 0 — Ben Hanowski (David Morley, Kalle Kossila) 3:08 (pp). Kossila tries to hit Morley with a backdoor pass. Morley misses the net on his shot, but a long rebound comes off the end wall to Hanowski, who shows quick hands to move it backhand to forehand and in before Saunders could get across.

St. Cloud State 1, UND 1 — Danny Kristo (Corban Knight) 5:02 (sh). Knight steals the puck from Dowd behind the net and feeds Kristo cutting down the slot. Kristo snaps a shot high stick side for the goal.

UND 2, St. Cloud State 1 — Corban Knight (Danny Kristo, Michael Parks) 15:45. UND keeps the puck in the zone for the entire two minutes of the power play, not allowing St. Cloud State a chance to change. The power play ends, but UND still capitalizes when Knight blasts one off the post and in. Parks makes the play happen by forcing a turnover on a gassed SCSU defender.

Second period

UND 2, St. Cloud State 2 — Ben Hanowski (Drew LeBlanc, Jonny Brodzinski) 1:59 (dp, ea). UND has two chances to touch up on a delayed penalty but doesn’t do it and UND pays. LeBlanc spots Hanowski on the side of the net and executes a perfect shot-pass. Hanowski tips it in.

Third period

No scoring.

Overtime

No scoring.

UND’s lines

16 Mark MacMillan–27 Carter Rowney–15 Michael Parks
7 Danny Kristo–10 Corban Knight–19 Rocco Grimaldi
8 Dan Senkbeil–28 Stephane Pattyn–17 Colten St. Clair
29 Bryn Chyzyk–13 Connor Gaarder–9 Drake Caggiula

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

33 Clarke Saunders
31 Zane Gothberg
35 Tate Maris

SCSU’s lines

10 Ben Hanowski–19 Drew LeBlanc–11 Kalle Kossila
16 Jimmy Murray–26 Nic Dowd–22 Jonny Brodzinski
18 Garrett Milan–8 Cory Thorson–21 Brooks Bertsch
9 Joey Benik–13 David Morley–17 Joey Holka

28 Andrew Prochno–14 Nick Jensen
7 Kevin Gravel–12 Ethan Prow
40 Tim Daly–4 Taylor Johnson

29 Ryan Faragher
33 Joseph Phillippi

Friday night rewind

Five highlights from around the country:

1. No, it’s not a misprint. Nebraska Omaha actually did beat Bemidji State last night. It’s only the second time in 13 games between the teams that the Mavs have come away with a win over the Beavers.

2. It appears UND wasn’t the only team that suffered from a hangover after the rivalry series. Minnesota lost to MSU-Mankato 2-1 thanks to a goal by Brett Knowles with just 44 seconds left. Mav goalie Stephon Williams stopped 37 of 38 shots. It snapped Minnesota’s 10-game unbeaten streak.

3. Maine entered the weekend with 5 wins in 23 games this season, but stunned Boston College 4-1. The Eagles started the season 10-1, but are 4-5-2 since Thanksgiving.

4. Notre Dame lost its fifth straight game and moved to 1-6 since Thanksgiving with a 3-1 loss to Ferris State.

5. Western Michigan rallied from a 2-0 hole to beat Michigan 3-2. Michigan is now 1-5 in the last six games and holds an 8-15-2 overall mark and a 5-12-2 CCHA record.

WCHA top performers

3 points — Matt White, Omaha, 2 goals, 1 assist
3 points — Michael Mersch, UW, 2 goals, 1 assist
2 points — Jonny Brodzinski, SCSU, 2 goals

SCSU 3, UND 1

In a game that was much uglier than the score would indicate, UND managed a season-low three shots in the first period and eight shots through the first 45 minutes of the game en route to a home loss against St. Cloud State. Game stories:

Grand Forks Herald

Grand Forks Herald column

St. Cloud Times

USCHO

UNDsports.com

Other notes:

  •  UND actually had a strong opening four minutes of the game, I thought. They were getting pucks deep, finishing hits. Then, the Huskies came down and scored a bad goal and the air went out of the team. UND needs to respond better to something like that than they did Friday.
  • A lot of attention has been placed on UND defensively — that will happen when you don’t win — but St. Cloud State really didn’t have very many Grade A chances in this game. This was one where UND didn’t make it very difficult on Ryan Faragher.
  • A lot of credit has to go to St. Cloud State’s top defenseman Nick Jensen. He dominated the game, I thought. He must have played 30 minutes and he hardly ever makes a mistake. He skates extremely well and was able to turn pucks out of the SCSU zone quickly. I don’t think I’ve seen a better defenseman in the league this year than him.
  • Miller wrote a little bit about it, but I can’t imagine that the lines will be the same in the series finale tonight. I think we’ll see Mark MacMillan back on the top line.
  • Jonny Brodzinski, who was pretty good in the first series between the teams, scored two goals for the Huskies. An interesting side note is that he scored the goals against his Fargo Force teammate from last year, Zane Gothberg.
  • After the game, Bob Motzko praised the play of Brodzinski and talked about his great shot, even drawing a Matt Frattin comparison.
  • UND is on its first three-game winless streak since last October, which is a pretty remarkable run.
  • Corban Knight’s point streak ended at 19 games. Steve Johnson’s record of 27 is safe. Still, 19 games is quite a run these days (goal scoring was nearly double on average in college hockey when Johnson played).
  • UND has only been swept at home one time in the last six years (DU in January 2010). It will try to avoid that fate in tonight’s series finale.

Gameday final: SCSU 3, UND 1

TONIGHT’S VIEWING: MidcoSN, DirecTV 623, FCS Central. Webcast at UNDsports.com. Lineup notes: Panzarella in for Mattson, Gothberg starting in net. Full lines and live chat are below.

First period

SCSU 1, UND 0 — Jonny Brodzinski (Jimmy Murray, Ethan Prow) 4:15. A loose puck comes out to the right circle, where Brodzinski throws a blind turnaround shot on net. It hits Gothberg’s arm and goes in. It’s one that Gothberg probably wants back.

SCSU 2, UND 0 — Ben Hanowski (Kalle Kossila) 16:36. Kossila comes out of the corner with the puck and finds Hanowski on top of the crease. Hanowski has his back to the goal, but turns around and snaps it inside the post.

Second period

No scoring.

Third period

SCSU 3, UND 0 — Jonny Brodzinski (Nic Dowd, Jimmy Murray) 7:35. Brodzinski gets the puck in the left circle and snaps a wrister off the far post and in.

SCSU 3, UND 1 — Rocco Grimaldi (Carter Rowney, Zane Gothberg) 13:49 (pp). Grimaldi and Rowney execute a give-and-go. Grimaldi enters the zone, leaves it for Rowney at the top of the circle and drives the net. Rowney gets it back to Grimaldi, who re-directs it past Faragher.

UND’s lines

25 Mitch MacMillan–10 Corban Knight–7 Danny Kristo
16 Mark MacMillan–27 Carter Rowney–15 Michael Parks
9 Drake Caggiula–28 Stephane Pattyn–19 Rocco Grimaldi
8 Dan Senkbeil–17 Colten St. Clair–11 Derek Rodwell

2 Andrew MacWilliam–20 Joe Gleason
18 Dillon Simpson–22 Andrew Panzarella
4 Derek Forbort–24 Jordan Schmaltz

31 Zane Gothberg
33 Clarke Saunders
35 Tate Maris

St. Cloud State’s lines

10 Ben Hanowski–19 Drew LeBlanc–11 Kalle Kossila
16 Jimmy Murray–26 Nic Dowd–22 Jonny Brodzinski
37 Joe Rehkamp–8 Cory Thorson–21 Brooks Bertsch
9 Joey Benik–13 David Morley–17 Joey Holka

28 Andrew Prochno–14 Nick Jensen
7 Kevin Gravel–12 Ethan Prow
40 Tim Daly–4 Taylor Johnson

29 Ryan Faragher
33 Joseph Phillippi