2014 Pulitzer Prize Winner
  • Mankato Eve

    Fri, February 29, 2008 by admin with 2 comments

    When Colorado College looks back on one weekend that made a difference in its quest for the MacNaughton Cup and a top seed in the NCAA West Regional, it may look no further than the St. Cloud State series.

    The Tigers stretched their lead to 4-1 just 24 seconds into the second period in Friday’s game (Feb. 8) and went on to win 5-3 after the Huskies put the pressure on.

    On Feb. 9, CC suffered its first — and so far, only — home loss of the season, falling behind 3-1 after a period and eventually losing 4-2.

    That series was sandwiched between two dominating performances: the sweep of Clarkson and the road sweep of Minnesota-Duluth, in which the Tigers shut out Duluth both nights.

    Coach Scott Owens hopes CC can become a model of consistency, starting with this weekend’s series against No. 10 Minnesota State-Mankato, a squad that has won seven of its past nine.

    “As soon as you think it’s automatic, that’s when you get into trouble,” Owens said after the Tigers’ final skate before the series in which they could clinch the MacNaughton Cup. “We’re on a one-game losing streak at home. We can’t go on autopilot and expect to win.”

    Coming off of the defensive corps’ strongest performance of the season last weekend at Duluth, defenseman Jack Hillen said his fellow defensemen have adapted a playoff mentality and hope to cut down on the amount of shots allowed this weekend.

    “It was a good lesson after we lost to St. Cloud,” said Hillen, the top-scoring Western Collegiate Hockey Association defenseman with 28 points. “We didn’t play that well. Against Duluth, we got into a roll a little bit. … It was maybe a good reminder to play hard every night, that we’ve got to play well no matter what. But no one’s dwelling on the loss.”

    Captain Scott Thauwald, who returns to the lineup for the first time since Feb. 9, said that if anything, CC’s focus and intensity has only increased this week with the knowledge that two wins gives the Tigers a share of the MacNaughton Cup. If North Dakota loses or ties a game at Duluth this weekend, CC will win the Cup outright with two victories over Mankato.

    Again, Thauwald pointed to the loss to St. Cloud State as added inspiration in CC’s bid for its first regular-season title since it shared one with Denver in 2004-05.

    “It wasn’t necessarily the worst thing in the world,” he said. “It was a good eye-opener. Guys are fired up because we lost the last time we played at home. We’re ready to start a new streak here.”

    Because right wing Stephen Schultz (concussion) will not return to the lineup this season and left wing Addison DeBoer (separated shoulder) will be out this weekend, the Tigers will have just 12 forwards plus converted defenseman Brett Wysopal at their disposal.

    Notes:
    1,000 tickets remain for Friday’s game against Mankato…400 tickets remain for Saturday’s game…CC’s regular-season finale against Denver on March 8 is sold out.

    Anticipated CC lines for Friday:
    Bill Sweatt–Chad Rau–Mike Testwuide
    Scott McCulloch–Andreas Vlassopoulos–Jimmy Kilpatrick
    Scott Thauwald–Tyler Johnson–Eric Walsky
    Brett Wysopal or Dan Quilico–Brian McMillin–Matt Overman

  • Kilpatrick Selected For Frozen Four Skills Challenge

    Thu, February 28, 2008 by admin with no comments

    This season has been remarkable for senior right wing Jimmy Kilpatrick, who thought he might miss the first two months of the season because of hip surgery in August. Instead, the New Prague, Minn., native returned in the third game and is second on the team in goals and third in points. The NCAA announced this morning that Kilpatrick will be at the Frozen Four even if the Tigers aren’t.

    NCAA Announces 2008 Frozen Four Skills Challenge Participants
    WCHA Players Include CC’s Kilpatrick, DU’s Thomas & Mannino; OSU’s Bonhomme, UM’s Ross, UMD’s Demeule, MSU’s Kehler, SCSU’s Fast

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – The NCAA has announced the participants for the third annual Frozen Four Skills Challenge, which will be held April 11 at the Pepsi Center in Denver.

    The competition will be conducted in an East versus West format with each team having six male position players, six female position players, two male goaltenders and two female goaltenders. An alternate list has been established in the event that players have to withdraw from the competition due to other commitments, such as their team’s participation in the Men’s Frozen Four.

    To be eligible, all players must have exhausted their collegiate eligibility and be nominated by their head coach. The players were selected by representatives from the American Hockey Coaches Association, the NCAA Division I Men’s Ice Hockey Committee and NCAA national office staff. The competitions will include puck control relay, fastest skater, hardest shot, rapid fire shooting, accuracy shooting and penalty shot. Each competitor will receive a complete set of equipment and a full uniform from Nike Bauer Hockey.

    “The Frozen Four Skills Challenge has really taken off as an event,” said Joel Maturi, chair of the Division I Men’s Ice Hockey Committee and director of athletics at the University of Minnesota. “Each year the caliber of the student-athletes in this competition has gotten stronger and stronger, and we feel this year is no different. The Skills Challenge will once again be a showcase of the nation’s best senior student-athletes.”

    The men’s portion of the East squad is highlighted by the one of the nation’s current leading goaltenders, Kevin Regan of New Hampshire. The other goaltender is David Leggio from Clarkson. The six male skaters on the East squad include Luke Flicek, Army; Michael Brennan, Boston College; Pete MacArthur, Boston University; Jesse Winchester, Colgate; Jon Rheault, Providence and Jake Morissette, RPI.

    The female skaters on the East squad include Hayley Moore, Brown; Jaclyn Hawkins, Connecticut; Martine Garland, New Hampshire; Jennifer Hitchcock, New Hampshire; Marykate Oakley, Princeton and Sabrina Harbec, St. Lawrence. The goalies will be Sarah Perry, Sacred Heart and Meghan Guckian, St. Lawrence.

    The West team is led by the nation’s leading point scorer, Michigan’s Kevin Porter, who has 51 points on 25 goals and 26 assists. The rest of the skaters include Jimmy Kilpatrick, Colorado College; Andrew Thomas, Denver; Bryan Lerg, Michigan State; Tommy Goebel, Ohio State and Mike Forgie, Wayne State (Mich.). The West goaltenders will be St. Norbert’s Kyle Jones, who leads Division III with a goals against average of 1.18, and Denver’s Peter Mannino, who was the 2006 Men’s Frozen Four Most Outstanding Player.

    The women’s portion of the West roster includes Ohio State’s Tessa Bonhomme, who is in the top 10 in the nation in assists with 27. Also on the team is Courtney DeHoey, Lake Forest; Karine Demeule, Minnesota Duluth; Bobbi Ross, Minnesota; Shannon Moulson, Niagara and Laura Fast, St. Cloud State. The two female goaltenders will be Laura Hosier, Mercyhurst and Britni Kehler, Minnesota State, Mankato.

    Tickets for the event are $10 and will go on sale March 1 at the Pepsi Center box office, all Ticketmaster outlets, Ticketmaster.com or by phone at 303/830-8497. The Frozen Four Skills Challenge will begin at 7 p.m. Mountain time and will be preceded by the Hobey Baker Memorial Award at 5:30 p.m. and the Hockey Humanitarian Award at 6:05 p.m. The Frozen Four Skills Challenge and the Hobey Baker Award will both be shown live on ESPNU.

  • Bachman Named INCH Player of the Week

    Tue, February 26, 2008 by admin with 1 comment

    For the second time this season, goaltender Richard Bachman has been tapped as Inside College Hockey’s player of the week for his 60-for-60 performance against then-No. 13 Minnesota-Duluth. The Tigers have earned the honor three times overall as right wing Mike Testwuide was named player of the week after the Clarkson series.

    Bachman was also tapped as WCHA rookie of the week, the third time this season he has received that honor.

    Center Andreas Vlassopoulos, who had two goals and two assists at Duluth, was named WCHA offensive player of the week.

    Around the horn:
    –I can hardly wait to hear what Jimmy Kilpatrick has to say about this story. Kilpatrick and his sister, Jenna, a freshman on Ohio State’s hockey team, trained with an Ultimate Fighting Championship fighter this summer.
    –Tough break for former CC right wing James Brannigan. The would-be senior was released from the Augusta Lynx (ECHL) for the second time last week. He had eight points in 20 games.

  • No. 4 CC 4, No. 13 Minnesota-Duluth 0 (final)

    Sun, February 24, 2008 by admin with 2 comments

    Whoever uses the “Richard Bachman is a freshman” argument to deny him of post-season accolades would be a fool. Among his many accomplishments this season, Bachman became the first CC goaltender to shutout a series on the road Saturday, when he saved 29 shots in the Tigers’ 4-0 win over Duluth. Bachman ranks first in the nation in both goals against average (1.71) and save percentage (.935).

    But as Bachman himself pointed out after the game, he had some help.

    “I thought tonight the team played very well,” Bachman said. “I didn’t think they had too many grade-A shots. Even compared to last night, I thought our ‘d’ stepped up bigger, so that really helped a lot. …They did their job, which enabled me to do mine.”

    Several of Tigers’ defensemen also played their best series of the season.
    –Senior Jack Hillen, who had three assists Saturday, was mentioned several times among press-box members as the following: “best player on the ice,” “first-team All-America” and “best defenseman in the league.”
    Duluth coach Scott Sandelin agreed after the game. “I like the way Jack Hillen plays,” Sandelin said. “He’s arguably one of the top defensemen in the league. Some people might not like the way he plays, but I do. He’s involved a lot in the play. I like his skating ability and he sees the ice.” Hillen, who leads WCHA defensemen in scoring and is tied for second nationally in that category, now has 28 points (3 goals, 25 assists), making him one of the top-scoring defensemen in recent CC history. (He needs 12 points to draw even with Brian Salcido, who had 40 points in the 2005-06 season.)
    –Coach Scott Owens mentioned the series as Kris Fredheim’s best in 2008.
    –I can’t begin to list the number of key blocked shots by the defensemen or the odd-man rushes they thwarted, but Nate Prosser, Brian Connelly, Ryan Lowery and Jake Gannon all did an excellent job of keeping the play to the perimeter and chipping the puck up, off the glass, and out of the zone.
    –Team defense was also at a premium. The ability of the Tigers’ forwards to keep the puck in the offensive zone could only be topped by that of the Clarkson series, but CC had more depth to work with that weekend.

    **I didn’t get a chance to speak with him in the hustle and bustle that occurs after a game, but I spotted left wing Addison DeBoer (shoulder) with his left arm in a sling. I’ll catch up with him this week.

  • No. 4 CC 3, No. 13 Minnesota-Duluth 0 (end of 2nd period)

    Sun, February 24, 2008 by admin with no comments

    The second period was much more defensive. CC struggled to maintain pressure in the zone, both on even strength and on the power play. But with the clock winding down on the Tigers’ second power play of the period, defenseman Brian Connelly sent a pass across the top to defenseman Jack Hillen, who again set up a one-timer for center Chad Rau.
    Goaltender Richard Bachman’s shutout streak over the Bulldogs extended to 177 minutes, 46 seconds, but could have seen its end when the puck took a strange bounce off the back wall at 12:20 of the second. Just as Bachman went to retrieve the puck, it bounced back into the slot, but defenseman Ryan Lowery managed to get there in time.

  • No. 4 CC 2, No. 13 Minnesota-Duluth 0 (end of 1st)

    Sun, February 24, 2008 by admin with no comments

    Colorado College owns a 2-0 lead heading into the first intermission Saturday against Minnesota-Duluth.
    Right wing Eric Walsky and left wing Matt Overman executed a textbook give-and-go around Duluth defenseman Travis Gawryletz. Walsky finished inside the right post to put CC up 1-0 less than nine minutes into the game.
    Then, the Tigers got their first power-play goal in 16 tries when center Chad Rau one-timed a pass from defenseman Jack Hillen under goaltender Alex Stalock.
    CC goaltender Richard Bachman stretched his shutout streak against the Bulldogs to 157 minutes, 46 seconds.

  • No. 4 CC vs. No. 13 Minnesota-Duluth

    Sun, February 24, 2008 by admin with no comments

    Lines:
    Colorado College
    21 Sweatt–14 Rau–25 Testwuide
    26 McCulloch–19 Vlassopoulos–23 Kilpatrick
    18 Overman–17 Johnson–22 Walsky
    27 Wysopal–9 McMillin–12 Quilico

    8 Hillen–15 Prosser
    7 Fredheim–4 Gannon
    11 Connelly–24 Lowery

    30 Bachman
    31 O’Connell

    Minnesota-Duluth
    10 Gergen–15 Bordson–19 Kemp
    23 Fulton–13 McKnight–37 Fontaine
    20 Carroll–8 Akins–16 Greer
    11 Schmidt–18 Sharp–27 Curry

    14 Cascalenda–17 Meyers
    4 Oberg–22 Gawryletz
    5 Palm–26 Huttel

    32 Stalock
    34 Ziegelmann
    1 Reiter

  • No. 4 CC 3, No. 13 Minnesota-Duluth 0 (final)

    Sat, February 23, 2008 by admin with no comments

    Colorado College didn’t played well on the NHL-sized sheet at Michigan Tech a month ago and Minnesota-Duluth’s surface is even smaller.
    But the Tigers were able to match Duluth’s physicality at moments and got clutch saves from goaltender Richard Bachman whenever they had breakdowns.
    CC took advantage of two Duluth miscues midway through the second period, with centers Chad Rau and Andreas Vlassopoulos, and got a crucial third goal from Vlassopoulos less than 5 minutes into the third period. Getting the three-goal lead has typically proved elusive for CC.
    Short two players for the final 40 minutes, CC was able to earn two points and sole possession of first place in the Western Collegiate Hockey Association. (North Dakota is playing a series against Bemidji State this weekend.)

    See shot chart here.

    –CC and Duluth showed why their penalty kills are ranked first and second, respectively, in the nation. The Tigers edge Duluth by .1 percent with a 90.2 percent clip.
    –The Tigers’ centers had one of their best nights on faceoffs. Rau was 11 for 22. Vlassopoulos was 8 for 16. Brian McMillin was 6 of 10. Tyler Johnson was 6 of 12. (Left wing Scott McCulloch was 0 for 1.)
    –McCulloch was scoreless on five shots, including three point-blank opportunities. He should be fired up tomorrow.
    –Rau and Vlassopoulos each snapped eight-game scoreless streaks.

  • No. 4 CC 2, No. 13 Minnesota-Duluth 0 (end of 2nd period)

    Sat, February 23, 2008 by admin with no comments

    Colorado College centers Andreas Vlassopoulos and Chad Rau scored two goals within 25 seconds to give the Tigers a 2-0 lead heading into the final 20 minutes.
    CC managed to kill three penalties in the final 10 minutes of the period, thanks to nine saves by goaltender Richard Bachman, who had 15 saves in the frame. Bachman’s best sequence came when he made three consecutive saves on shots by Duluth’s Michael Gergen and two from Drew Akins.
    After left wing Scott McCulloch missed his third breakaway of the game, Bachman preserved the 0-0 tie with a chest save on right wing Justin Fontaine.
    A minute later, CC’s Jimmy Kilpatrick dug the puck out of the right corner and passed to Vlassopoulos in the right circle. Vlassopoulos’ shot beat goaltender Alex Stalock five-hole to give CC the 1-0 lead.
    Just 25 seconds later, right wing Mike Testwuide caused Duluth’s Josh Meyers to turn over the puck at the blue line. Testwuide skated hard into the offensive zone and made a cross-slot pass to Rau, who finished gloveside on Stalock.

    **Addison DeBoer has not returned to the bench after leaving the ice midway through the first period with an unknown injury.

  • No. 4 CC 0, No. 13 Minnesota-Duluth 0 (end of 1st)

    Sat, February 23, 2008 by admin with no comments

    Tied 0-0 after a period, two unfortunate plays will make the going tough for Colorado College over the next two periods against Minnesota-Duluth.
    Midway through the period, left wing Addison DeBoer took a blind-sided open-ice check and was able to drag himself to the bench, where he gripped his left shoulder, grimaced and rocked back and forth. When a penalty was whistled less than two minutes later, DeBoer and trainer Jason Bushie left the ice. DeBoer has not returned.
    Then, DeBoer got some company in the locker room when defenseman Nate Prosser checked Duluth’s Andrew Carroll into the boards and was called for checking from behind and the accompanying game misconduct, which will make him ineligible for the last 40 minutes tonight. Duluth didn’t get much off of the subsequent five-minute power play, but still has 2:15 left in the man-advantage.