Click here for a video interview with Alexander Krushelnyski.
Click here for the video of Krushelnyski’s first goal and the excellent Mike Boivin pass that set it up.
CC 4, No. 9 Minnesota State 1
Colorado College hopes to finish the season strong. The Tigers took a big step in that direction with a dominant third period against No. 9 Minnesota State-Mankato.
CC broke a 1-1 tie with three third-period goals, two by junior Alexander Krushelnyski, to down the Mavericks 4-1 Friday night before an announced crowd of 6,481 fans at World Arena.
“We got better as the game went on and Mankato showed why they have 20 wins so far this season,” Tigers coach Scott Owens. “This was a good team win. We have room to get better. I am proud of how the guys played tonight.”
The game-winner came only 2:59 into the final period when Tigers wing Archie Skalbeck gutted out a greasy goal. The junior won a puck battle with Mavericks defenseman Zach Palmquist in the slot and lifted the puck past freshman goalie Stephon Williams’ left shoulder to give the Tigers the 2-1 lead and their second power-play goal of the game.
The hard-work score exemplified how the Tigers bounced back from a lackluster performance last Saturday.
“We didn’t think we played very well last Saturday and we wanted to come out and play a good hard game tonight,” Skalbeck said. “Everybody is pretty happy about tonight and hopefully tomorrow we can come out with a better mindset then we did last Saturday and come out with a sweep here. “
For more of the game story, go to gazette.com/sections/sports/cchockey/ later tonight.
Former Tiger Sauer garners national award
Former Colorado College player and coach Jeff Sauer will receive the 2013 Legend of Hockey award from the Hobey Baker Memorial Award Foundation at its annual banquet May 22 in St. Paul, Minn.
Sauer is the only person to coach 31 seasons in the Western Collegiate Hockey Association and is also the winningest coach.
The former Tigers player joined coach Bob Johnson as an assistant at CC in 1966, then followed Johnson to Wisconsin for a similar role in 1968. Sauer was head coach at CC from 1971-82 until taking over the Badgers.
Sauer became the first coach to win the NCAA tournament title in his initial season. He won a second title in 1990. Sauer retired in 2002. Sauer is fifth all-time in games coached (1,244) and is eighth overall in wins at 655. In league play at Wisconsin, Sauer’s teams finished amongst the top three teams in 14 of his 20 seasons and won league titles in 1990 and 2000.
Sauer will coach the U.S. national deaf and sled hockey teams at their world championships this month and next.
Past honors include the Distinguished Achievement Award from USA Hockey in 2000 and the Lester Patrick Award for outstanding contributions to hockey in the U.S. by the NHL in 2011.
Senior Night is Saturday
Tiger fans are asked to arrive about 10 minutes early for the pregame ceremony honoring the seven seniors on the CC team. They are: Mike Boivin, Andrew Hamburg, Joe Howe, Joe Marciano, William Rapuzzi, Rylan Schwartz, and Scott Winkler. Tickets remain available.
CC senior Scott Winkler put in a strong performance, recording a goal and assisting the game-winner by Archie Skalbeck to help the Tigers tie the game and pull ahead. It was Winkler’s first points since two goals at North Dakota on Jan. 12.
“He did a nice job,” Tigers coach Scott Owens said. “He was pretty good down low. That was good to see.”
Playoff intensity already
The odds are most Tiger fans will not get to see their team play live this postseason, but they got a little taste of that intensity during Friday’s game.
An important 5-minute power play that led to the tying goal was set up by a kneeing call against MSU’s Matt Leitner and a 5-minute contact to the head and game misconduct (available Saturday) against Zach Lehrke.
While Mankato played a physical game, most of CC’s penalties were due to fatigue, with both Eamonn McDermott and Mike Boivin caught out on the ice too long during the third period, Owens said.
CC finds room over final 40 minutes
Minnesota State’s 1-2-2 defensive formation proved sound in the first period, limiting CC to one shot through the first few minutes and keeping the puck below the Tigers’ goal line early.
CC handled the forecheck better after the first few minutes and started to develop better scoring chances, prompting MSU to take a timeout with 5:49 left in the opening stanza after its fourth icing call.
CC continued to find more room, eventually leading to three high-end scoring chance including a 3-on-1 shorthanded breakaway that went awry when Alexander Krushelnyski paused and then missed the net less than a minute into the third period.
He more than atoned for it with two goals later that period.
“He will definitely get less grief about that now,” Owens said, then laughed.
An opening goal by Rylan Schwartz was immediately waved off after the referee ruled the senior knocked the puck in with his hand after a scramble and rebound in front of the MSU net. … It was CC’s fourth win over a Top 10 team in the past six weeks.
No. 10 Denver 2, No. 2 Minnesota 0
MINNEAPOLIS — Sophomore goaltender Juho Olkinuora stopped 33 shots while sophomore forward Ty Loney scored a goal and an assist to lead Denver to a 2-0 win against Minnesota on Friday night at Mariucci Arena.
No. 7 St. Cloud State 5, Michigan Tech 3
ST. CLOUD — St. Cloud State (20-12-1, 17-7-1 WCHA) stayed in control of first place in the WCHA with a big 5-3 victory over Michigan Tech (10-17-4, 6-15-4 WCHA) on Friday at the National Hockey and Event Center in St. Cloud, Minn.
The victory increased SCSU’s league points to 35, which keeps the Huskies three points ahead of second-place North Dakota (32 points) with three regular-season games remaining. A SCSU win and losses by UND and Minnesota would clinch the MacNaughton Cup for the Huskies for the first time since joining the league in 1990.
No. 16 Wisconsin 4, No. 13 Nebraska-Omaha 3
OMAHA — Sophomore forward Brendan Woods scored the game-winner at 18:18 of the third period to lift Wisconsin to a 4-3 victory against Nebraska Omaha on Friday night at CenturyLink Center.
No. 6 North Dakota 4, Bemidji State 2
GRAND FORKS — Sophomore forward Mark MacMillan scored two goals and an assist and junior forward Mitch MacMillan added a goal and an assist to lead North Dakota to a 4-2 win against Bemidji State on Friday night at Engelstad Arena.
Minnesota-Duluth 4, Alabama-Huntsville 2
DULUTH — Sophomore forward Justin Crandall and sophomore defenseman Chris Casto each registered a goal and an assist to lead Minnesota Duluth to a 4-2 victory against Alabama-Huntsville on Friday night at AMSOIL Arena.
Alaska-Fairbanks 2, Alaska-Anchorage 1 OT
FAIRBANKS — Garrick Perry scored his second of the season late in the second period for UAF while Alex Gellert forced overtime with a power-play goal in the third. Cody Kunyk scored the game-winner 2:10 into the extra time.
Colorado College 4, No. 9 Minnesota State 1
Minnesota State 0 1 0 –1
Colorado College 0 1 3 –4
First period – No scoring. Penalties – none.
Second period – 1. MSU, Margonari (Leitneer, McInnis) 3:38; 2. CC, Winkler (Boivin, Schwartz) 12:43 (PP). Penalties – MSU, Leitner, kneeing, 10:29; MSU, Lehrke, 5-minute contact to the head, game misconduct, 10:54; CC, Hamburg, holding, 13:49; CC, Bradley, roughing, 16:16; MSU, Blueger, roughing, 16:16.
Third period –3. CC, Skalbeck (Winkler, Harstad) 2:58 (PP); 4. CC, Krushelnyski (Boivin) 9:26; 5. CC, Krushelnyski (McDermott) 16:36 (SH, EN). Penalties – MSU, Gaede, tripping, 1:23; CC, McDermott, boarding, 11:34; CC, Boivin, tripping, 16:20.
Power play – MSU 0-3, CC2-4. Shots on goal – MSU 11-5-16 – 32; CC 6-9-12 –27. Saves-minutes – MSU, Williams 6-8-9 – 59:44; CC, Howe 11-4-16 – 60:00. Referees – Sterns, Bokai. Linesmen – Keltie, Staudte. Attendance – 6.481.