Performers / Underperformers Week #2

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Here’s my ranking of the “Performers and Underperformers” in the college hockey universe for week 2:

Performers

  1. University of Nebraska-Omaha (4-0-0) – The Mavs traveled to Burlington, VT to take on the Catamounts who were fresh off a nice road win over Minnesota. In a typically difficult venue to win at UNO swept UVM by scores of 4-3 / 3-1.  Austin Ortega had four goals on the weekend and teammate Frederick Olofsson notched two of his own. This is a huge early season road sweep for UNO. For their efforts, UNO is my week 2 “Performer” of the Week.
  2. Bentley University Falcons (2-2-0) – Located in Waltham, Mass., Bentley University is not typically mentioned along with legacy hockey programs at Harvard, Boston College, Boston University, Northeastern and UMass-Lowell. However, this past weekend they put themselves in the limelight by sweeping Northeastern in a home and home series by scores of 3-2 and 4-1. They were outshot by the Huskies 51-11 on Friday and 41-27 on Saturday but hey –  it’s the “W” that counts. A nice weekend for this Atlantic Conference squad.
  3. St. Cloud State University Huskies (4-0-0)  – Goaltender Charlie Lindgren is 3-0 with three consecutive shutouts, 0.00 GAA and 1.000 SV%. The Huskies swept in-state rival Minnesota State University Mankato by scores of 4-0 and 3-0. Mankato simply is mired in a goal scoring slump and facing a red-hot goaltender in Lindgren didn’t help matters. The Huskies travel to Quinnipiac in another key battle this weekend.
  4. Miami University RedHawks (2-1-1) – Miami was another squad that faced an in-state rival in a weekend non-conference series. The RedHawks had a home and home series with Ohio State University and swept the Buckeyes by scores of 3-2 / 3-1. Jack Roslovic scored the GWG in each game.
  5. University of Minnesota Duluth Bulldogs (2-1-0) – In yet another series pitting two non-conference rivals, the Bulldogs swept the University of Minnesota in a home and home weekend by scores of 3-1 at Mariucci Arena and 3-0 at Amsoil Arena in Duluth. Dominic Toninato scored each night and UMD goaltender Kasimir Kaskisuo only allowed one goal on the weekend in a series clearly dominated by the Bulldogs.
  6. Merrimack College Warriors – The Warriors took care of St. Lawrence County, NY travel partners Clarkson and St. Lawrence in a weekend sweep. Merrimack dismantled Clarkson 7-1 on Friday and picked up another win by the score of 3-1 over SLU Saturday. Colin Delia turned aside 51 SOG on the weekend. Matthew Tibbet scored twice for the Warriors on Friday.
  7. Denver University Pioneers (3-1-0) – The NCHC flexed it’s strength in another non-conference series as the Pioneers doubled-up Michigan State by scores of 4-2 and 3-0. The Pioneer’s goaltending tandem of Evan Cowley and Tanner Jaillet picked up the wins. Denver outshot the Spartans 41-16 in the Saturday contest.
  8. University of Michigan Wolverines (2-0-0)– The Wolverines swept Atlantic Hockey’s Mercyhurst in a home non-conference series by 6-4 and 3-2 scores. Michigan’s Kyle Connor had a four-point weekend.
  9. U-Mass Lowell River Hawks (3-0-0)  – The River Hawks edged Colorado College 3-2 and 2-1 for the weekend sweep. The “Hawks put 51 SOG in Friday’s win. Ryan McGrath netted goals in each contest for Lowell.
  10. University of Alaska-Anchorage Seawolves (3-1-0) – UAA knocked off both RPI and AIC by scores of 4-3 and 6-2 in the Alaska Gold Rush Tourney in Fairbanks. The Seawolves Wyatt Edge and Anthony Conti combined for four goals over the weekend.
  11. University of Alaska -Fairbanks Nanooks (2-2-0)  – Host Alaska evened their season record to 2-2-0 with wins over RPI and AIC in the Alaska Gold Rush Tournament. Tyler Morley got untracked on Friday with 2 goals and Taylor Munson did likewise on Saturday in the sweep.

Underperformers

  1. Northeastern University Huskies (1-2-0)  – No disrespect to Bentley but it probably was the surprise of the weekend to see the Huskies swept by Bentley in a home and home series. With all respect to the Huskies, they did outshoot the Falcons 51-11 in the 3-2 loss on Friday. But rather than correcting matters in the rematch on Saturday they found themselves at the short end of a 4-1 loss. Tough weekend for Northeastern.
  2. University of Vermont Catamounts (1-2-0)  – After a thrilling win on the road against the University of Minnesota the ‘Cats fell flat on their home ice getting swept by UNO 4-3 and 3-1. Both were close contests but you’ve got to find a way to get the split at home. It doesn’t get any easier as UVM battles North Dakota next.
  3. University of Minnesota Golden Gophers (0-3-0)  – The Gopher faithful are getting restless as the Gophers have started off the 2015-16 season with three consecutive losses (two at home). This past weekend, the UMD Bulldogs dominated the Gophers in a weekend sweep. They outscored the Gophers 6-1 over the weekend as Minnesota continues to have difficulty putting the puck in the net. They get Northeastern (see above) this weekend. It’ll be interesting as both teams are hungry for some success.
  4. Ohio State University Buckeyes (0-4-0) – Another struggling BIG 10 team is the Buckeyes who have dropped four consecutive games to in-state rivals Bowling Green and Miami. This past weekend they were doubled up by scores of 3-2 and 3-1. It doesn’t get any easier as they face defending national champion Providence College on the road this weekend.
  5. Minnesota State University Mankato Mavericks 0-4-0) – It’s been a rough couple of weekends for the Mavericks, ranked #14 entering last weekends play vs St. Cloud State. They’ve lost four straight to NCHC teams and have been shutout in three consecutive games. Last weekend they were stonewalled by SCSU’s Charlie Lindgren in 4-0 and 3-0 losses. They’ll need to correct things quickly as they enter WCHA conference play this weekend.
  6. University of New Hampshire Wildcats (1-2-0) – The Wildcats were edged 3-2 in overtime by St. Lawrence last Friday and followed that up with a Saturday loss 4-3 to Clarkson. Both were tight games but disappointing in that both losses were on UNH home ice.
  7. Michigan State University Spartans (1-2-1)  – The Spartans are another BIG 10 team struggling to get out of the blocks in 2015-16. Denver upended MSU both nights by scores of 4-2 and 3-0. The Spartans apparently left everything on the ice on Friday as they were outshot 41-16 in the 3-0 shutout on Saturday.
  8. Colorado College Tigers (0-4-0) – The Tigers were swept by Lowell on the road last weekend in two one-goal games. However, on Friday, they were dominated in a game where they were outshot 55-18. Saturday was a much better on-ice result but still a one-goal loss 2-1. They host Boston College this weekend and North Dakota next weekend to start the NCHC schedule. It’s quite likely they’ll go winless in the month of October with a 0-8-0 record.
  9. Mercyhurst University Lakers (3-3-0) – The Lakers had to be confident heading into the series with Michigan. After all, they were riding a three-game win streak with wins over Colgate and Bentley. They were brought back to earth after being swept by the Wolverines by scores of 6-4 and 3-2. The Lakers were outshot in the series 92-51 but hung in there and made a credible showing on behalf of Atlantic Hockey. .
  10. Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute Engineers (1-3-0) – The Engineers fell apart in the third period of both contests in the Alaska Gold Rush Tourney losing to UAA 4-3 and Alaska 4-2. After the high of defeating Boston College two weeks ago they now have the low of losing to two marginal Alaska squads.
  11. American International College Yellow Jackets (0-3-0) – Being outscored 20-7 in the first three games might be an indication it’ll be another rough year for the team from Springfield, Mass. Getting outshot 88-51 and outscored 13-4 by the two Alaska schools pretty much puts things in perspective. Not a pretty weekend to add to a long trip to Alaska.

Congrats to UNO for being named this weeks “Performer of the Week after a well-earned sweep on the road at Vermont.  

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