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  • Hockey: Torf is AHA rookie honoree

    Mon, February 28, 2011 by admin with no comments

    Air Force freshman goalie Jason Torf of Hermosa Beach, Calif. garnered his third rookie of the week honor from the Atlantic Hockey Association after backstopping the Falcons to a home sweep of Robert Morris this past weekend.

    His 13 wins are the second among Division I freshman goalies, one behind Denver’s Sam Brittain.

    Torf has made 25 consecutive starts. He also was the league’s goalie of the month for December.

  • Air Force boxing gets ready to rumble

    Mon, February 28, 2011 by admin with 2 comments

    Other than wearing a tuxedo for the only time all year, Air Force boxing coach Eddie Weichers will be inconspicuous for one of the Falcons’ biggest boxing events of the year.

    That’s the way he wants it at the Wing Open Championships on Thursday. The event is all about the cadets, from the boxers in the 12 matches, to the corner help, the ring announcers and the ushers.

    “The cadet wing is showcased and highlighted from top to bottom,” Weichers said.

    There will be 12 championship bouts for a full card, a rarity in recent years. Usually there are injuries or other issues that create a few walkovers. This year the highlight of the full card might be at the heavyweight class, where Nate Bratka, a track and field thrower, goes against Brian Corcoran, a sophomore linebacker on the football team. Both are from Cadet Squadron 27.

    “Nathan said ‘I like Brian, but I’m going to beat the blankety blank out of him Thursday,” Weichers said, adding that Bratka laughed afterwards as the two athletes have a lot of respect for each other.

    The event is free at Clune Arena. Every year Air Force boxing gives donations at the event to a local charity, starting with a $500 gift to the March of Dimes in 1970. This year, the cause is the Wounded Warrior Project.

    “I think that makes it special,” Weichers said. “And the price is right.”

  • Hockey: Falcons garner a vote

    Mon, February 28, 2011 by admin with 1 comment

    For the first time since early in the season, Air Force garnered a point in the weekly U.S. College Hockey Online rankings.

    U.S. College Hockey Online poll

    Team (1st-place votes)          Rec.                Pts.      Prev.

    1. North Dakota (42)             24- 8-3            989      1

    2. Boston College (6)             24- 7-1                        948      2

    3. Yale (1)                               23- 5-1            887      3

    4. Union (1)                             25- 7-4            837      5

    5 (tie). Denver 20- 9-5                        726      6

    5 (tie). Michigan 23- 9-4                        726      10

    7. New Hampshire 19- 7-6                        659      9

    8. Miami 19- 9-6                        628      11

    9. Merrimack 21- 7-4                        620      4

    10. Notre Dame 21-10-5           608      8

    11. Minnesota-Duluth 19- 8-6                        569      7

    12. Nebraska-Omaha 20-12-2           457      12

    13. Boston University 17- 9-8                        365      15

    14. Maine 16-10-6           342      16

    15. Western Michigan 16-10-10         248      17

    16. RPI 19-10-5           227      14

    17. Colorado College 18-15-3           182      19

    18. Wisconsin 19-13-4           177      13

    19. Minnesota 15-12-5           148      20

    20. Dartmouth 16-10-3           114      18

    Others receiving votes: Princeton 18, Ferris State 8, Rochester Institute of Technology 6, St. Cloud State 5, Cornell 3, Robert Morris 2, Air Force 1.

  • Hockey: Falcons deliver on Senior Night

    Sun, February 27, 2011 by admin with 1 comment

    The Air Force hockey team paid tribute to its seven seniors Saturday night at Cadet Ice Arena before its regular-season finale against Robert Morris. Matt Becker, Sean Bertsch, Derrick Burnett, Scott Kozlak, Jacques Lamoureux, Blake Page and Brad Sellers were honored for their accomplishments along with their families and friends.

    The Falcons responded with a 4-2 victory that featured goals from three seniors. With the win, Air Force earned a first-round bye in the Atlantic Hockey Association playoffs and will host a best-of-three quarterfinals series March 11-13.

    The seniors make up the second-winningest class in Air Force history. Heading into the Atlantic Hockey Association playoffs, they have won 81 games (81-49-20), three shy of the Class of 2010’s record of 84.

    The group won the AHA Championship and played in the NCAA Tournament as freshmen and sophomores in 2008 and 2009. They also played key roles in the team’s 2009 NCAA Tournament win over Michigan and advancement to the Elite Eight, the only service academy to do so.

  • Final: Air Force 74, Colorado State; a rematch in Vegas?

    Sat, February 26, 2011 by admin with no comments

    Let’s revisit Air Force’s conference tournament seeding scenarios, which didn’t seem so hot after a loss at Wyoming. All of a sudden, getting the preferred matchup, against Colorado State, isn’t so outrageous.

    First of all, barring a very odd turn of events (like Wyoming going 2-1 or 3-0 against the top three teams in the league to finish the season), Air Force won’t be in the play-in game on the first day of the Mountain West tournament.

    In its first game, Air Force obviously does not want to play the second seed, which will probably be San Diego State, or the probable third seed UNLV, which hosts the tournament. With a 2-0 final week, the Falcons are very likely to avoid that scenario.

    First, Air Force gets TCU, which is 1-14 in conference play. If the Falcons win that, Saturday’s regular-season finale against New Mexico could be for the fifth seed, which likely means a first-round date against Colorado State.

    New Mexico is ahead of Air Force by a game in the standings, and would win the tiebreaker against the Falcons because it has a better win, against BYU. But the Lobos play at BYU on Wednesday. If Air Force wins on Wednesday and New Mexico loses, both teams would be 6-9 in conference play. Utah also has six conference wins, but it plays at Colorado State and against UNLV in the final week. If the Utes lose at least one of those games, Air Force has the tiebreaker based on a head-to-head sweep.

    So, barring some wild upsets on Wednesday, Air Force should get the fifth seed with a win at New Mexico on Saturday. Even if Air Force loses that game, it would move up one spot (and avoid a likely conference tournament opener against the Aztecs) with a win in the final week and two Utah losses.

  • Ramsey: Will be blogging at halftime and after

    Sat, February 26, 2011 by David Ramsey with no comments

    Hope you’ll stop by.


  • Pregame: Colorado State at Air Force; Falcons’ latest loss hurt

    Sat, February 26, 2011 by admin with no comments

    The Falcons don’t have much room for error anymore, not after a pretty tough loss at Wyoming. Here’s what that loss probably cost the Falcons:

    - The two postseason tournaments that might have taken a look at the Falcons, the CBI and the CollegeInsider.com tournament, won’t invite Air Force if it has a losing record (technically, the CBI has invited losing teams before, but it’s tough to believe the Falcons will be in that group). Air Force has three games remaining – vs. Colorado State, vs. TCU and at New Mexico. The Falcons need to win two of those three to enter the conference tournament 15-14, then need to win again at the MWC tourney to secure a record above .500. A win today seems to be a necessity to reach that goal.

    - The problem with getting a win at the Mountain West tournament is Air Force might have ruined its chances of avoiding the No. 2 seed (which seems like it will be San Diego State) in its first game of the tournament. The Falcons are two games behind fifth-place Utah and one game behind sixth-place New Mexico. If Air Force doesn’t win at New Mexico in the regular-season finale, it seems the Falcons will be the seventh seed (Wyoming would have to beat UNLV, BYU or San Diego State to move up from eighth place). That means a likely opening-round date against the Aztecs. Air Force had a chance to avoid that if it beat Wyoming.

    Air Force could make up some ground with a win against Colorado State today, but that won’t be easy. The Rams are on the NCAA Tournament bubble and need to win today or their resume will take a major hit.

  • New running backs coach settling in

    Fri, February 25, 2011 by admin with 3 comments

    New Air Force running backs coach Des Kitchings didn’t have long to learn everything he needed to know about his new players before he was out on the field coaching them.

    Kitchings was hired to replace Jemal Singleton on Feb. 7, after Singleton left for Indiana (and soon after that left Indiana for Oklahoma State). As such, Kitchings’ goals for spring practice were modest.

    “First of all, I just want to get familiar with the guys,” Kitchings said.

    Kitchings had some background in an option offense, but nothing as in depth as he has experienced so far at Air Force. His role is important, especially considering Air Force is searching for a new fullback.

    Players have been impressed in their few interactions with Kitchings.

    “He’s a nice guy, really good guy, but gets in your face when you need to fix something,” fullback Mike DeWitt said. “Look forward to working with him.”

    Kitchings has been adjusting on the fly at Air Force, but so far it hasn’t been so bad.

    “It’s just football,” Kitchings said. “Football is great, it’s just a different environment. It has all been good.”

  • Spring practice notes: Lamendola already looking solid

    Thu, February 24, 2011 by admin with 1 comment

    After more than a year off, Air Force hasn’t really eased inside linebacker Ken Lamendola back into the lineup. He took most of his snaps today with the starters, a sign that the Falcons are hoping for big things out of Lamendola, who missed all of last year with a knee injury.

    It’s way too early to think anything in the depth chart is permanent, but Troy Calhoun said he thinks the competition for the inside linebacker spots will be between Brady Amack, Jordan Waiwaiole, Austin Niklas and Lamendola. Amack and Waiwaiole started last year, Niklas played a lot off the bench. Lamendola had more than 100 tackles in 2008 as a sophomore.

    “I could see four guys that have a chance to earn some good playing time inside,” Calhoun said.

    Calhoun said Lamendola was moving around well and he wanted to see how Lamendola performed when the team put on full pads.

    Odds and ends: Former Air Force defensive lineman Chad Hennings watched the first half of practice. Hennings will participate in the national leadership and character symposium, which started today and goes through Friday at Air Force. … Chris Miller seems to have the early edge at the starting cornerback position vacated by Reggie Rembert’s graduation. Miller will be a sophomore in the fall. … Linebacker Harrison McWilliams (shoulder) and defensive lineman Ben Kopacka are out of practice. Calhoun said Kopacka should be able to do some things during spring practices, but McWilliams’ recovery might take a little longer. Calhoun said both should be ready for fall camp.

  • Hockey: AFA headed to Icebreaker next season

    Thu, February 24, 2011 by admin with 3 comments

    College Hockey Inc. confirmed that Air Force will travel to Grand Forks for the 15th annual Icebreaker season-opening tournament Oct. 7-8. Participants include host North Dakota, 2010 national champ Boston College and Michigan State.

    The semifinal pairings were not announced.

    We are excited for the opportunity to participate in the Ice Breaker in Grand Forks,” AFA coach Frank Serratore said. in a press release. “In addition to having a great field of teams, we have several players from the area who are looking forward to playing in front of family and friends. We also look forward to playing in front of the many service men and women stationed at Grand Forks Air Force Base, as well as the many retired military people in the area. Hopefully, they will all come out to Engelstad Arena and cheer on the Falcons.”

    The last time Air Force played in the Icebreaker was when Colorado College hosted the event in 2005.