Monday, October 22, 2012

College hockey round-up: Week 2

The second full weekend of Division I college hockey was completed over the weekend, with a milestone and a celebration framing some exciting action.

The top-ranked Minnesota Golden Gophers split a pair on Friday and Saturday night in a two-game set at Michigan Tech. Despite dropping Friday's opener by a 5-3 count, the national semifinalists claimed a 3-2 victory on Saturday which gave head coach Don Lucia his 600th career win. Lucia became just the 10th coach in college hockey to reach the milestone.

Minnesota, however, slid to second in this week's brand new poll.

Number two North Dakota also recorded a win and loss over the weekend. First, it claimed a 5-0 victory against Alaska-Anchorage at the Ralph, but couldn't maintain momentum on Saturday, falling by a 2-1 score to Alaska (formerly Alaska-Fairbanks). Nonetheless, the Sioux fell back to fourth spot.

Third-ranked Boston College overcame a shaky start to the regular season by winning both of its contests, one at home and one on the road. Friday night in Amherst, the Eagles fell behind 3-0 after two periods but rallied to win 5-4 in overtime thanks to a goal from sophomore Johnny Gaudreau (Carneys Point, NJ).

On Saturday, in front of a packed house at Conte Forum, the school raised its fifth championship banner in program history then blanked Northeastern, 3-0. Parker Milner shut the door with 26 saves against a Huskies team which beat BC 3-1 last week to open the Hockey East schedule.

Those victories put the program back on top nationally, as they were in the preseason rankings.

Flyers goaltending prospect Anthony Stolarz also enjoyed a productive weekend, leading the unranked Nebraska-Omaha Mavericks to a sizeable win and a narrow defeat.

Though not the sharpest as his teammates racked up a 41-13 shot edge over Northern Michigan, he made 11 stops in a 5-2 win on Friday at home. NMU struck back on Saturday, winning 2-1, but Stolarz playes slightly better, making 21 saves.

Penn State is now 2-2-0 on the young season, thanks to another weekend split.

Friday night saw Bengals goaltender Kevin Carr stopped all 35 shots he faced as Buffalo State handed the Nits a 3-0 setback. One night later, in upstate New York, PSU toppled RIT by a 3-2 count. P.J. Musico was the star of the game, stopping 40 shots, while Max Gardiner totaled a goal and assist including the deciding score less than seven minutes into the third period.

Princeton, which does not open up its regular season until this coming weekend, dropped a 6-5 decision to Guelph on Saturday at Baker Rink. Alec Rush scored twice, but the Canadian university visitors took a 3-1 lead after one period and didn't look back. 

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