2014 Pulitzer Prize Winner
  • Weekend reading: Miami rink, UNO exhibition, Chase Perry

    Fri, July 11, 2014 by Joe Paisley with no comments

    Miami locker roomMiami completed $2 million in renovations to its ice hockey venue recently.

    Nebraska-Omaha hockey added an exhibition game against the Northern Alberta Institute of Technology (NAIT) to its 2014-15 schedule. The two teams will meet on Monday, Oct. 6 at 7:07 p.m. CT at the CenturyLink Center.

    The game will be the second meeting between the two schools.  The Mavericks won the first game, 6-1, at the beginning of last season.  The Mavericks have begun nearly every season against a Canadian university and are 16-2-0 all-time in those games.

    The NAHL wrote an article about incoming Tigers goalie Chase Perry.

  • Weekend reading: AFA schedule, Hlinka commits, WMU hire, NHL draft picks

    Thu, July 3, 2014 by Joe Paisley with no comments

    Burnett actionHoly Cross and RIT announced its schedule as did exhibition foe McGill University of Montreal, allowing me to piece together the Air Force hockey schedule some more.

    The program will announce its schedule later this month.

    Here are the confirmed Falcon games as of July 2 (Home games in CAPS):

    Oct. 6, McGILL UNIVERSITY (exhibition)

    Oct. 17, at Alaska-Fairbanks (Brice Gold Rush)

    Oct. 18, vs. Alaska-Anchorage (Brice Gold Rush)

    Oct. 24-25 RIT

    Nov. 1, at North Dakota (Hall of Fame Game)

    Nov. 7-8, ALABAMA-HUNTSVILLE

    Nov. 14-15 at Robert Morris

    Nov. 21 at Denver

    Nov. 22 COLORADO COLLEGE

    Dec. 5-6 at Bentley

    Jan. 2-3 at Holy Cross

    Jan. 16-17, 2014 ARMY

    Jan. 30-31 ROBERT MORRIS

    Thirteen of the 22 players selected for the u18 Ivan Hlinka tournament are college commits. Three remain uncommitted.

    Denver commit commit Troy Terry of Highlands Ranch is one of the players headed to the Czech Republic and Slovakia.

    Western Michigan filled its associate head coach vacancy with a Providence assistant. That leaves one opening after former Denver assistant Steve Miller was hired last week.

    Here is a list of all the college and college commits selected in the recent NHL Draft.

  • CC season ticket sales surging

    Thu, June 19, 2014 by Joe Paisley with no comments

    Colorado College hockeyThe recent hire of a new coach is behind a recent surge in Colorado College hockey season ticket sales, said Scott Lowenberg, associate athletic director, external operations.

    “The 100 sold over the last three to four weeks and the volume of recent inquires is not the norm for this time of year,” Lowenberg said, adding that lower prices are also a factor. “People are very excited about Coach Mike Haviland. They are also excited to see what he will do with our outstanding freshman class returning as sophomores and the incoming big-time goalies.”

    Most available season tickets are in the upper bowl sides and ends and corners. Prices go up $5-30 after June 27. Here are more details.

  • CC hires former Tigers standout as assistant

    Mon, June 16, 2014 by Joe Paisley with no comments

    RJENGAMUGFormer Tiger right wing R.J. Enga is back home.

    The school announced on Monday that the former Colorado College standout will serve as an assistant under new hockey coach Mike Haviland.

    This homecoming is a long time in the works for Enga, whose parents live in Monument and his children, Kaelin 11, and Makenna, 9, reside in the Briargate area.

    “I am honored, humbled and excited by this opportunity at my alma mater and the chance to be back in Colorado Springs with my family,” Enga said.

    After serving as a volunteer assistant at CC during the 2008-09 season, Enga knew he needed experience in the junior hockey ranks before he could return to his alma mater. He spent two years as an assistant at Topeka of the North American Hockey League and the past three with the Chicago Steel of the U.S. Hockey League.

     While with the Steel, Enga, 42, coached incoming Tigers Chris Dodero and Mason Bergh and current players Christian Heil, Alex Roos, and Jaccob Slavin.

    “I loved playing for him down in Chicago and I know the rest of the guys did as well,” Bergh said. “He puts in so much effort to make everyone better. He’s very good at passing along his knowledge about the game to players and I can’t wait to play for him again in the future.”

    His knowledge of college hockey’s main recruiting pools impressed Haviland.

    “The players he coached said they really liked playing for him,” Haviland said. “He is very familiar with the talent in both leagues and in B.C. (British Columbia).”

    Haviland said Enga will be out recruiting most often, but he expects himself and the other assistant, who will be named in the next two weeks, to be out scouting often.

    The Air Force brat was born in Germany. He spent his formative years in Colorado Springs after his father, longtime AFA tight ends coach Dick Enga, joined the staff. Enga played area youth hockey until leaving for Indiana’s Culver Military Academy at age 15. He was drafted by the N.Y. Islanders in the 10th round of the 1990 NHL Draft while at Culver before playing for Colorado College (1991-95).

    Enga recorded 142 career points (61 goals), good for a tie for 37th all-time, at the now-National Collegiate Hockey Conference school.

    That success and love of his alma mater makes him a good fit, Haviland said.

    “He is very passionate about Colorado College,” Haviland said. “We need the high-end players to come here and he can really sell the school. He knows the school and the block plan. He will be a very effective recruiter.”

    “It’s a great set-up for a student-athlete,” Enga said, referring to the block plan. “It works and Colorado Springs and the area, well, all that sells itself.”

    Enga played minor league pro hockey for 10 seasons, including four with the WCHL’s Colorado Gold Kings. Afterwards, he worked for the Colorado Springs Amateur Hockey Association.

  • Weekend reading: Owens job search; Duluth exhibitions; NCAA rules

    Fri, June 6, 2014 by Joe Paisley with no comments

    Scott Owens Photo #3Multiple media outlets are reporting that former Colorado College hockey coach Scott Owens was interviewed recently for the vacant Princeton head coaching position. College Hockey News reports Owens was brought on campus for an in-person meeting.

    Owens has not made any public statements about his early April resignation from his alma mater, where he served for 15 years, since the initial announcement.

    Former CC assistant Joe Bonnett is also reportedly in the running for the job, which opened after three-year coach Bob Prier (25-58-12) resigned in May.

    For the first time since 1964, Minnesota-Duluth will play two exhibition games in Canada. The Bulldogs added three exhibition games with Lakehead University with the first of those coming on Oct. 3 at AMSOIL Arena in Duluth. The two clubs will then meet twice (Jan. 2-3) at the historic Fort Williams Gardens in Thunder Bay, Ontario. Here is the Bulldogs’ 2014-15 schedule.

    UMD hasn’t paid a visit to Canada since Dec. 26, 1964 when they battled the Port Arthur North Stars to a 6-6 tie in Port Arthur, Ontario (now known as Thunder Bay).  The Bulldogs are 11-0-0 lifetime against Lakehead and upended the Thunderwolves 7-0 this past season (Oct. 7) in Duluth.

    USCHO put together an article about how the NCAA rules committee maintained the status quo on OT, face shields and live game video review for discipline.

    And just to make you hunger for October a little more, here is the 2014-15 ECHL schedule, where a number of former Tigers will be playing this coming fall and winter.

  • CC assistant search down to six finalists

    Tue, June 3, 2014 by Joe Paisley with no comments

    Colorado College hockeyThe search for the new Colorado College hockey assistants is almost over with six finalists contending for the two openings.

    New Tigers coach Mike Haviland said he hopes to make the decision soon.

    “I would like to get this completed by the end of this week if we can,” he said. “We’re close to getting it done.”

    Haviland would not release any names but said some of the dozens of applicants have extensive college backgrounds while others may have coached in the college and professional ranks.

    “Some of the guys have a lot of college experience because I need someone like that,” the longtime pro coach said. “Most importantly, I need someone who fits CC and me so we can do our bets to help our student-athletes succeed. Some of the guys I know personally and others really had strong interviews and resumes. I think the road I’m going down is a good one.”

    One name making the rounds of the rumor mill is former Denver associate coach Steve Miller.

    Former CC assistant Eric Rud recently took the head women’s job at St. Cloud State while Joe Bonnett, whose name was removed from outside his former office, has not spoken publicly on his future.

    The offseason changes came after longtime coach Scott Owens resigned in early April following a 7-24-6 season. Haviland’s hire was announced on May 9.

    Haviland credited athletic trainer Jason Bushie and equipment manager Spud Hamilton for working with athletic director Ken Ralph to schedule the team’s travel for next season while he conducts the assistant search.

    After the assistants are in place, Haviland will focus on hiring someone for the new director of hockey operations position, which handles team travel and video work. Haviland said the team’s captains will be named after the assistants are in place.

  • New coach plans meeting with current CC assistants

    Fri, May 9, 2014 by Joe Paisley with no comments

    havilandNew Colorado College hockey coach Mike Haviland will meet with current assistants Joe Bonnett and Eric Rud to talk about the current and incoming players and their futures in the National Collegiate Hockey Conference program.

    “I would like to sit down and talk to them about the players and get a feel for them,” he said. “I have heard great things about them.”

    The longtime professional coach beat them and seven others finalists out for the job, which came open in early April when Scott Owens resigned following a 7-24-6 season. The job drew 60-plus applications, athletic director Ken Ralph said.

    Rud2010-11gb31Both expressed interest in staying on with the program before the announcement was made Friday morning. Rud said he had not been contacted by Haviland as of Friday afternoon.

    “I am looking at all my career options,” the former CC All-American defenseman said.

    Bonnett did not respond yet to a telephone message left Friday afternoon.

    Bonnett MUGHaviland expects to arrive in Colorado Springs on Sunday to meet them and current and past players in the area. A press conference or a public reception introducing Haviland is expected next week.

    The hire fills the last college head coach opening this offseason. Western Collegiate Hockey Association member Lake Superior State hired Damon Whitten on April 26.

    Two junior coaching jobs remain open as of mid-May, including the U.S. Hockey League’s Des Moines Buccaneers and the North American Hockey League’s Johnstown (Pa.) Tomahawks.

  • Former CC players drew new coach to program

    Fri, May 9, 2014 by Joe Paisley with no comments

    havilandHavilandaction2New Tigers hockey coach Mike Haviland liked what he saw while coaching former Colorado College players in the pros.

    It convinced him the private school could be a good fit. Fans, alumni and players hope the Stanley Cup-winning assistant coach’s hopes are proven right after the hire was announced on Friday.

    Haviland coached former Tigers defenseman Gabe Guentzel in Norfolk during the 2012-13 season and worked with Capitals blue-liner Jack Hillen during a rehab stint with Washington’s American Hockey League affiliate in Hershey, Pa. this past season.

    Former CC center Mark Cullen was one of his assistant captains in Norfolk during the 2005-6 season.

    “Meeting those three showed me the kind of players and men CC produces,” Haviland said. “When the job came open, I reached out quickly. CC is one of the top Division I programs in the country and I thought it would be a great fit.”

    Haviland, whose 15 years in the pro coaching ranks include serving an assistant with the 2010 NHL champion Chicago Blackhawks, is the 14th coach in the 75-year-old program’s history on Friday.

    Hershey Bears HockeyThe 46-year-old replaced former longtime coach Scott Owens, who resigned after 15 seasons at his alma mater following a 7-24-6 campaign. Haviland beat out current CC assistants Joe Bonnett and Eric Rud, among others, for the job, which came open in early April.

    The new coach signed a multi-year deal with CC late Thursday and declined to disclose financial details, as per college policy, when interviewed Friday morning.

    “They certainly took care of me and my family,” he said. He and his fiancée Kristin have a blended family with six children.

    The likely pay range is $200,000 to $275,000 a year, judging from the top five reported salaries in the National Collegiate Hockey Conference.

    Haviland has coaching experience at the Division III level. As an assistant with small, liberal arts-oriented Elmira (N.Y.) College, he helped his alma mater to a 51-12-2 record and two ECAC Division III championships from 1996-1998. He recorded 51 points (27 goals) in 23 games during his final season with the Soaring Eagles.

    He said that experience taught him how to keep the student part of student-athlete at the forefront.

    “I want to help develop them on and off the ice,” he said.

    It was one reason school president Jill Tiefenthaler signed off on the hire.

    “We are very fortunate to find a candidate who is both a teacher and mentor, as well as someone who will take our program in exciting new directions,” she said. “Mike is dedicated to his players and excited about being part of our community. He will be a transformational motivator and leader for our student athletes.”

    Administrators also hope for considerable success on the ice.

    “We have aspirations of winning national championships, and I am confident we have found the right coach to turn our vision into reality,” athletic director Ken Ralph said.

    “My intention is to win a national championship and I believe we will,” Haviland said.

    havilandThis past season, Haviland led the Hershey Bears to ninth place in the Eastern Conference, just two points shy of the playoffs despite a 39-27-5-5 record in his first year at the helm. A Manhattan native who grew up in Middletown, N.J., Haviland served as assistant in charge of forwards in Norfolk the previous season (37-34-4-1).

    Before then, he was a Blackhawks assistant in charge of special teams from 2008-12. The Original Six franchise went 187-101-40 over those four years and hoisted the 2010 Stanley Cup. In 2012, following his dismissal from Chicago, he was a finalist for the vacant Capitals job that went to the now-fired Adam Oates.

    “Mike has won championships at multiple levels and has always produced winning programs,” Ralph said.

    Haviland spent four seasons coaching (172-81-325) the ECHL’s Trenton Titans (2004-05) and Atlantic City Boardwalk Bullies (2001-04) and won two league titles (2003, 2005).

    He moved up to AHL Norfolk (93-51-10-6) for two seasons (2005-7). The then-Blackhawks affiliate broke single-season wins and points records, which earned him the 2007 Coach of the Year award.

    He moved on to Rockford (Ill.) when the Blackhawks affiliated with that team. The IceHogs went 44-26-4-6 and advanced through two playoff rounds that season before he joined Chicago as an assistant.

    As a player, Haviland was selected by the New Jersey Devils in the 1990 NHL draft. His experience includes AHL Binghamton (1989-90) and the ECHL (1990-91) with Richmond and Winston-Salem.

     

  • CC coach announcement expected Friday morning

    Thu, May 8, 2014 by Joe Paisley with no comments

    rp_primary_stoyks_thorny-unhA source close to the Colorado College hockey coach search confirmed that the new coach announcement is scheduled for about 9:30 a.m. Friday via a press release.

    No press conference is planned.

    Neither current assistants Eric Rud nor Joe Bonnett were chosen to replace longtime coach Scott Owens, who resigned in early April after 15 seasons leading his alma mater following a 7-24-6 season.

  • CC announces schedule; lower season ticket prices

    Tue, May 6, 2014 by Joe Paisley with no comments

    SlavinThe upcoming Colorado College schedule is out and it will be cheaper for some to see the 18 home games next season.

    The price reduction for season tickets was made since CC had a difficult time scheduling home games because of previous agreements and other schools’ availability.

    “We were light on home games and we wanted to be fair to our fans,” CC athletic director Ken Ralph said.

    The National Collegiate Hockey Conference member lowered its season ticket prices from 10 to 18 percent depending on the seat’s location if purchased before June 27, CC associate athletic director Scott Lowenberg said. Season ticket renewal forms will be mailed out May 19-23.

    The light schedule prompted CC to book the USA U-18 national team for Dec. 27-28 with the second contest counting as one of the allowed 34 regular-season games under NCAA rules. None of the three home exhibitions this season count in the team’s record or in the Pairwise rankings.

    A scheduling conflict with The Broadmoor World Arena affected the Gold Pan rivalry series. Instead of playing a home-and-home series against Denver in November, the foes will play a single game on Nov. 14 at Denver with three games in 14 days (Feb. 7, 20 and 21). The CC hosts DU for its only game that weekend on Feb. 7 and again on Feb. 20.

    Skalbeck celebrationThe Trans-Siberian Orchestra is scheduled for CC’s home venue that November weekend. Both schools had Feb. 6-7 open and preferred a single game, Ralph said.

    CC travels to Air Force on Nov. 22 to determine ownership of the annual Pikes Peak Trophy after hosting Big Ten Wisconsin the night before.

    The USA U-18 exhibitions are followed by the second of two tough road trips to the East Coast. CC plays two games at Providence Jan. 3-4 and a single game on Tuesday, Jan. 6 at new Hockey East member UConn. The first trip is Oct. 24-25 against Boston College on Friday and New Hampshire on Saturday.

    The Tigers open play with an exhibition against Canada’s McGill University on Sunday, Oct. 5 followed by the season and home opener against Alabama Huntsville Oct. 10-11.  CC opens NCHC play at home against North Dakota Oct. 17-18.

    Individual ticket prices remain the same except for rows A-D in the upper bowl. Those went up to $18 from $16.50. Season tickets for the lower bowl center and sides between the goal lines are sold out as are the upper bowl rows A-D seats.

    The upcoming season features games against six NCAA Tournament teams. The Tigers will face foes from five of the six leagues, including four games against Hockey East schools.

    CC 2014-15 schedule

    Subject to change, all times MT

    Home games bolded

    Oct. 5, McGill University (exhibition), 6:07 p.m.

    Oct. 10-11, Alabama-Huntsville (Homecoming), 7:37, 7:07 p.m.

    Oct. 17-18, North Dakota, 7:37, 7:07 p.m.

    Oct. 24, at Boston College, 5 p.m.

    Oct. 25, at New Hampshire, 5 p.m.

    Oct. 31-Nov. 1, OPEN

    November

    Nov. 7-8, at Miami, both 5:07 p.m.

    Nov. 14, at Denver, 7:37 p.m.

    Nov. 21, Wisconsin, 7:37 p.m.

    Nov. 22, at Air Force, 7:05 p.m.

    Nov. 28-29, OPEN

    December

    Dec. 5-6, at Minnesota-Duluth, both 6:07 p.m.

    Dec. 12-13, at Western Michigan, both 5:07 p.m.

    WINTER BREAK

    Dec. 27, USA U-18 (exhibition), 7:07 p.m.

    Dec. 28, USA U-18 (exhibition), 6:07 p.m.

    January

    Jan. 3-4, at Providence, 5 p.m.

    Jan. 6, at UConn, 5:05 p.m.

    Jan. 16-17, Nebraska-Omaha, 7:37, 7:07 p.m.

    Jan. 23-24, at North Dakota, 6:37, 6:07 p.m.

    Jan. 30-31, St. Cloud State, 7:37, 7:07 p.m.

    February

    Feb. 7, Denver, 7:07 p.m.

    Feb. 13-14, Miami, 7:37, 7:07 p.m.

    Feb. 20, Denver, 7:37 p.m.

    Feb. 21, at Denver, 7:07 p.m.

    Feb. 27-28, Western Michigan, 7:37, 7:07 p.m.

    March

    March 6-7, at Nebraska-Omaha, 6:37, 6:07 p.m.

    March 13-15, NCHC quarterfinals TBA

    March 20-21, NCHC Frozen Faceoff (Target Center, Minneapolis) TBA