Wednesday, October 30, 2013

1° Below Freezing: Quick Hits In B1G Hockey

Another week in the books for our Big Ten teams and one that saw many teams have success. Ohio State, Minnesota and Michigan players earn Big Ten Three Stars and for a change we don't totally disagree. Outside of that, in case you missed any of the weekend's action, here are our quick hits from around the league.

Go, Go, Gophers: For the second straight week Minnesota sits atop both major college hockey polls ( and USA Today/ USA Hockey Magazine) after posting a 5-0-1 record so far this season. I've said it before and I'll say it again, the depth the Gophers have this year is unreal. Once again, 10 different players put up first-period points in Sunday's 6-1 rout of Boston College. Don Lucia said it after Minnesota's first game of the season:

"I think we're deeper than we've ever been. Last year I thought we were a little thin on some lines...We won't have one or two guys getting all the points, it will be more spread out. I think you'll see that all year."

While the scoring is spread out, junior Sam Warning is leading the team and the NCAA with a six-game point streak. Warning has 12 total points (5g, 7a) this season to tie him for first in scoring across the league.

Another streak worth mentioning is the six-game win streak Warning and the boys in maroon and gold are on. It's the Gophers best start since the 2008-09 season where the first loss didn't come until Nov. 22. But Minnesota will have its work cut out with a weekend off before a tough November schedule with familiar foes awaits (Notre Dame, Mankato, UMD and Wisconsin).
Ohio State Brings Out The Brooms: That's a sweep, the Buckeyes (3-3-0) earned their first wins of the season against a winless Robert Morris this past weekend. Ohio State continued the streak with a win Tuesday over Bowling Green. A cherry on top was junior forward Nick Oddo being named Big Ten's First Star of the Week for his three-point weekend (the only Big Ten player to do so this weekend). Oddo's line with Travis Statchuk and Matt Johnson combined for three goals and eight points. Things finally look like they might start to be clicking for the young Buckeye squad.

Michigan Holds Steady: A split against solid contenders with their first loss coming at the hands of UMass-Lowell, the Wolverines (4-1-1) stay in the No. 4 spot for both polls. Nothing to shutter at U-M faithful, the squad still looks great. In net Zach Nagelvoort (Big Ten's Third Star of the Week) looks comfortable, stopping an impressive 34 shots in Saturday's loss. Tyler Motte is leading the offense without hesitation. The defensive corps for the Wolverines are equally as impressive, ranking sixth in the nation with a 1.83 goals against average. Michigan has also held opponents to two goals or less in five of the six games this season. A weekend against Michigan Tech should be an easy test for Michigan.

Penn State Keeping Pace: The Nittany Lions are still looking good despite a recent 5-2 loss to Vermont. PSU is able to keep up with most of its opponents so far this season. Head Coach Guy Gadowsky told that "I've learned this team has a lot more to learn." And with each game offers another learning experience for the DI newbies. I am liking the looks of Tommy Olyczk and Taylor Holmstrom as well as Nate Jensen and some of the younger defensemen. Time will tell for Penn State.

Spartans Sputter: First-win-monkey is off Michigan State's back. A rally from behind to topple ranked Boston University 3-1 looked promising but for the most part things are still a little sloppy looking for MSU. A Friday-Sunday series with American International might boost moral if they can pull it together.

Wisconsin Ready to Step Up?: A weekend off, the Badgers should be ready to roar back with a weekend against Lake Superior at the Kohl Center. They have so many of the pieces in place for a great season but are slumping similar to last year. Anxious to see how November treats them.

Monday, October 28, 2013

The B1G Scoreboard (10/25/13-10/27/13)

Men's Scores From 10/25/13:

Men's Scores From 10/26/13:

Men's Score From 10/27/13:

Women's Scores From 10/25/13:
  • No. 1/1 Minnesota 4, Bemidji State 0
  • Lindenwood 1, No. 2/2 Wisconsin 5

Women's Scores From 10/26/13:
  • No. 1/1 Minnesota 4, Bemidji State 3
  • New Hampshire 8, Penn State 5
  • Lindenwood 1, No. 2/2 Wisconsin 4

Women's Scores From 10/27/13:
  • New Hampshire 3, Penn State 1

Friday, October 25, 2013

B1G Weekend Matchups

The  Big Ten Network got lucky this weekend, able to host one of, in my opinion, the best matchups of the weekend with BC and Minnesota. This weekend also features the final points of the Hockey East vs. Big Ten Challenge. Hockey East currently leads 9-4 but Big Ten teams get home advantage this weekend. Game on.

No. 5 Boston College at No. 1 Minnesota – This tops the list for college matchups for the weekend. Two successful series sweeps for Minnesota moved the Gophers up in both college polls this week. BC is doing alright for themselves including a 9-2 romping of highly touted (and Minnesota rival) Wisconsin last Friday. Mariucci is one of the best places to hold home ice but guarantee that the Eagles recall last year’s 8-1 route by the Gophs and will want to avenge the loss. The Big Ten will broadcast Friday’s game and Fox Sports North takes on Sunday’s matinee feature at 1 p.m. CT.

No. 18/NR UMass-Lowell at No. 4 Michigan (and Michigan State) – After one lone week at No. 1 before being stunned and upset by Sacred Heart in the opening weekend, UMass-Lowell keeps the tumble with a home-and-home sweep by Quinnipiac last weekend. This is a team desperate for a win but it won’t be easy with games in the Mitten State. I am especially excited to see the Saturday contest against Michigan.

No. 13/14 Boston University at No. 4 Michigan -- BU faces Michigan State on Saturday, but again, that’s not the game I am interested in watching. The Wolverines have two big tests this weekend with above UMass-Lowell and BU who handed a beating to Wisconsin (tough Boston visit for the Badgers yikes) 7-3 last Saturday. Can’t wait to see if the Terriers or Wolverines have the bigger bite in this game.

Also this weekend:  RIT and Vermont at Penn State & Robert Morris vs. Ohio State home-and-home series. Wisconsin gets the weekend to recoup.

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

The B1G Scoreboard (10/10/13-10/13/13)

Men's Scores From 10/10/13:

Men's Scores From 10/11/13:

Men's Scores From 10/12/13:

Women's Scores From 10/11/13:

  • St. Cloud 2, Ohio State 2 (OT, SCSU wins in SO)
  • Minnesota 2, Wisconsin 1
  • Quinnipiac 5, Penn State 1

Women's Scores From 10/12/13:

  • Ohio State 4, St. Cloud 2
  • Minnesota 2, Wisconsin 0
  • Quinnipiac 4, Penn State 0