Each week Minnesota Hockey Journal Editor Greg Anzelc sits down with the Wooger to discuss all of the action on the ice, as well as some of the great stories off of the ice!
This season the Gophers have added some depth on defense and overall, the team speed is better. This group is full of some “team” players that can really make some good hockey plays as they have size and plenty of stick skills. There is definitely no lack in mobility or physicality on this squad. Last weekend the goaltending was solid but untested, but Minnesota should be solid between the pipes this season with Kent Patterson, who was named the WCHA co-Defensive Player of the Week.
Looking at the weekend series at UMD, on paper these teams appear to be pretty even. Jack Connolly, Travis Oleksuk and J.T. Brown will lead the way this season for the Bulldogs. Minnesota will bring a lot of emotion to Duluth on Friday night and be ready to play, and get after it with some aggressiveness. The question mark this weekend, for both teams, will be which players expected to step up this year, actually step up. Give the goaltending edge to Minnesota and that should be a difference that can equate to 2 points for Minnesota. This is a big weekend for both teams as each needs the momentum moving in the right direction: Minnesota re-establishing themselves and UMD continuing the momentum from the success of last year. This is a long-standing rivalry and this is the only meeting of the year, so there is some added incentive this weekend on the shore of Lake Superior.
THE CALL: Split
Bemidji State (1-1-0, 0-0-0 WCHA) at No. 7-ranked Colorado College (0-0-0)
CC has one of the best players in the league in Jaden Schwartz, a WCHA pre-season Player of the Year pick. Bemidji has enough top players to give CC a good game, but CC has too much high end talent.
THE CALL: 3 points for CC
Wisconsin’s issue will be goaltending this year. Tech will be energized and play hard for their new coach, but Wisconsin is still too deep for Tech to sneak out of the weekend with a win.
THE CALL: Bucky sweep
Games for Friday, October 14: * Nebraska Omaha vs Alaska Anchorage (NC), 3:05 pm AT; Wisconsin at Michigan Tech (WCHA), 7:07 pm ET; Denver at Boston College (NC), 7:30 pm ET; St. Cloud State at Northern Michigan (NC), 7:35 pm ET; Minnesota at Minnesota Duluth (WCHA), 7:07 pm CT; UMass Lowell at Minnesota State (NC), 7:07 pm CT; Maine at North Dakota (NC), 7:37 pm CT; Bemidji State at Colorado College (WCHA), 7:37 pm MT. * Brice Alaska Goal Rush (Fairbanks, AK)
Games for Saturday, October 15: Denver at Boston University (NC)7:00 pm ET; Wisconsin at Michigan Tech (WCHA), 7:07 pm ET; St. Cloud State at Northern Michigan (NC), 7:35 pm ET; * Mercyhurst vs Alaska Anchorage (NC), 4:05 pm AT; Minnesota at Minnesota Duluth (WCHA), 7:07 pm CT; Maine at North Dakota (NC), 7:07 pm CT; UMass Lowell at Minnesota State (NC), 7:07 pm CT; Bemidji State at Colorado College (WCHA), 7:07 pm MT; * Nebraska Omaha at Alaska Fairbanks (NC), 7:05 pm AT. * Brice Alaska Goal Rush (Fairbanks, AK)
WCHA Player of the Year
WCHA Rookie of the Year