Here’s an abbreviated version of performers and underperformers for week #3, the weekend of 10/24-26.
- Michigan Tech University Huskies – It’s difficult to gauge how teams fit into the rankings at this time of year. However, the Huskies sweep of Ferris State does make a statement thus far in this early season. MTU earned a shutout on Friday 1-0 and held the Bulldogs to two goals on Saturday. That’s been tough to do at Ferris the last few years. An outstanding road weekend for the Huskies and goaltender Jamie Phillips..
- Bentley University Falcons – Yes, there is another college hockey team in Boston….okay Waltham, 10 miles west of Boston. And, that team made the trip to Troy, NY and swept RPI on their home ice. A surprise to many but there are some in the know that say this is a pretty good hockey team. Stay tuned…
- Boston University Terriers – BU has quite a player in Jack Eichel but apparently another in Ahti Oksanen who picked up a goal each night in the Terriers 1-0 win over Michigan State and 3-2 win over Michigan. 2013-14 was a tough year for BU hockey. It appears they have righted the ship.
- Northern Michigan University Wildcats – Listen, these rivalry games in the upper peninsula of Michigan go back many years and they mean a lot to the fans and teams. It’s a big weekend for the Wildcats to travel to the Soo and sweep the Lakers 4-2 and 3-0. Nice weekend.
- University of Minnesota Golden Gophers – The Beavers were pesky and battled the Gophers hard all weekend. But, in the end, the Gophers persevered and their power play was clicking with 4 tallies on the weekend in the sweep of Bemidji State. This weekend they get to face Bemidji’s MNSCU sister school St. Cloud State.
- Boston College Eagles – The Eagles beat up on Colorado College 6-2 Friday and then UMass 4-1 Saturday. Not unexpected and all in a weekend’s work for BC.
- Colgate University Raiders – The #4 ranked Raiders traveled to Sacred Heart and swept the Pioneers by scores of 5-2 and 4-2. The Raiders are simply too much for the Sacred Heart squad to handle right now. Nuff said…
- Canisius College Golden Griffins– The Griffs are 5-2 in this early season after sweeping American International on the road. The real test comes this weekend as they host Ohio State at the brand new Harbor Center. But, a sweep on the road should always be recognized.
- Penn State University – Penn State is making good progress and seem to be developing a nice home ice environment for themselves. They put 50 SOG on Holy Cross in the 3-1 Friday win and then totally dismantled them in the Sunday rematch 7-1. PSU is now 3-1-2 to start the season and haven’t lost at home.
- Notre Dame Fighting Irish – Due to the luck of the Irish their advanced scheduling had them hosting Niagara this past weekend. Lucky draw against one of the easiest marks in hockey right now. As expected, the Purple Eagles were no match for Notre Dame getting swept 6-3 and 7-0. That was an easy bet.
- Bowling Green Falcons – The Falcons didn’t get the weekend sweep but are getting my kudos for a successful road trip to Clarkson getting a 2-2 tie on Friday and a 5-4 win on Saturday. I like this Falcon team and suspect they will be vying for the WCHA title this season.
- Minnesota State University-Mankato Mavericks – Picked to win the WCHA this season, the Mavericks were huge favorites this past weekend at home vs the UAH Chargers. However, the scores were closer than expected with the Mavs winning 3-1 and 4-1. Nevertheless , a conference sweep.
- Ferris State University Bulldogs – I have to lay this one on the Bulldogs getting swept at home in conference play by Michigan Tech University. They faced a tough goaltender in Jamie Phillips but still a weekend sweep on your home ice hurts. This series could haunt them down the road.
- Rensselaer Technological Institute Engineers – It may be that Bentley is the real deal. However, getting outscored on your home ice 9-2 over the weekend certainly qualifies you for underperformer status. The Engineers earned it this past weekend.
- Michigan State University Spartans – The Spartans were consistent in the underperforming department last season and are continuing that trend once again. They were swept by Boston University 1-0 and Lowell 2-1. Both are tough Hockey East schools or at least appear to be this season.
- Lake Superior State University Lakers – The Lakers were swept on their home ice by Northern Michigan. The Lakers are now winless in 8 games. The season is nearly over for them after the first month. It’s going to be difficult for LSSU to recover from the poor start in October.
- Colorado College Tigers – Must not have been much left in the rock pile for new CC coach Mike Haviland. Identical 6-2 losses to Boston College and New Hampshire give the Tigers a 2-4 record in October. Keep in mind the two wins were vs Huntsville. Looks to be a long season for Haviland and the Tigers.
- Niagara University Purple Eagles – Niagara was destroyed by Notre Dame 6-3 and 7-0 in South Bend last weekend. Another team that’s in for a long season.
- Holy Cross Crusaders – The Crusaders have one win in October and it’s versus American International, another regular on the underperformers list. They were outscored by Penn State by a score of 10-2 over the weekend. Ouch.
- American International University Yellow Jackets – Coach Gary Wright has a 36% all-time winning record. It “ain’t” going to get any better this season from the looks of it. Canisius pranced into the Yellow Jackets rink and swept them 3-1 and 4-2. Well, wait …they have Niagara on the schedule this week. Toss a coin folks, this should be interesting!
- Sacred Heart Pioneers – I struggled with placing the Pioneers on this list as they were huge underdogs to the Colgate Raiders. However, they were two losses on their home ice 5-2 and 4-2 and that simply gets you on this list.
- University of Alabama-Huntsville Chargers – The Chargers get an A for effort but still lost two to Mankato on the road by scores of 3-1 and 4-1.
Congrats to the Michigan Tech University Huskies. They are this weeks Center Ice View “Performer of the Week” for their road sweep of Ferris State. Well done boys.