Could This be the Most Prolific SCSU Team Ever?

The Huskies are currently

The 2015-16 Huskies averaged 4.27 goals per game (Photo Prout)


ST. CLOUD, MN- I’ve had the pleasure of watching many great Husky hockey teams over the years. Immediately, teams that come to mind are the 2012-13 squad that won the NCAA Midwest Regional and advanced to the Frozen Four in Pittsburgh. Then there was the 2000-01 team that captured the Huskies first WCHA Final Five Championship and advanced to the NCAA quarterfinals in Grand Rapids, MI. There was also the 2001-02 team that was edged 4-2 by Michigan in the NCAA regional final  in Ann Arbor, Michigan. And, you cannot ignore the 2013-14 team that advanced to the NCAA West Regional finals in St. Paul. Watching the prolific offensive numbers of the 2015-16 team had me wondering how this years edition of the Huskies matches up with those exemplary teams of the past. I therefore went back to the record books and here’s what I found:

2015-16 SCSU HUSKIES (31-9-1 overall / 17-6-1 NCHC )

The current SCSU  Huskies squad has that rare combination of a high-scoring offense and a stingy defense. Goaltender Charlie Lindgren carries the load in goal and is currently ranked as one of the top goaltenders in college hockey. He has been spectacular at times making some mind bending saves that have dictated the results of a number of games. The seniors led by Kalle Kossila have provided outstanding offensive leadership with 40% of the teams points.  Defenseman Ethan Prow is currently the top-scoring defenseman in college hockey and leads a strong but young core of defenseman. The team is currently ranked #2 in offense, #10 defense, #2 on power play and #36 on the penalty kill. ( Statistics through 3/8/2016).

  • Offense: 4.27 Goals Per Game
  • Defense: 2.20 Goals Allowed Per Game
  • Power Play: 29.5%
  • Penalty Kill: 83.1%

Goaltender: Charlie Lindgren .925 SV% | 2.12 GAA |  30-9-1

Top Three Scorers:  Kalle Kossila (14-40-54) Joey Benik (23-25-48) Patrick Russell (20-21-41)

2000-01 SCSU HUSKIES (31-9-1 overall / 20-8-0 WCHA)

This team included future NHLers Tyler Arnason, Mark Hartigan, Joe Motzko, Duvie Westcott, Ryan Malone, Matt Hendricks and Jeff Finger. Much like the current SCSU team, there was outstanding depth at all positions and high-end forwards who posted some elite numbers on offense. Duvie Westcott was as good of an offensive defenseman as there was in college hockey and could control the game from end to end. Scott Meyer played close to 2100 minutes in goal and was named first-team All WCHA and All-American. Nationally, the team finished the season ranked #1 in offense, #5 on defense, #1 on the power play and #9 on the penalty kill.

  • Offense: 4.10 Goals Per Game
  • Defense:  2.29 Goals Allowed Per Game
  • Power Play:  26.3%
  • Penalty Kill: 86.6%

Goaltender: Scott Meyer .926 SV% | 2.23 GAA | 25-8-1

Top Three Scorers: Tyler Arnason (28-28-56) Brandon Sampair (12-38-50) Mark Hartigan (27-21-48)

2001-02 SCSU HUSKIES (29-11-2 overall / 19-7-2 WCHA)

Despite the departure of Tyler Arnason, Brandon Sampair and Duvie Westcott, the team still had prolific scorer and All-American, Mark Hartigan and the emergence of Matt Hendricks, Nate Dicasmirro, Ryan Malone and Joe Motzko to lead the offense. Still a potent offensive team, they also maintained a solid defensive core but had rotating goalies in Dean Weasler who played close to 80% of the minutes and future starter Jake Moreland. Nationally, the team was #3 in offense, #6 in defense,  #1 in power play and #15 in penalty kill.

  • Offense: 3.36 Goals Per Game
  • Defense: 2.45 Goals Allowed Per Game
  • Power Play: 30.4%
  • Penalty Kill: 84.8%

Goaltender: Dean Weasler  .923 SV% | 2.22 GAA Jake Moreland .916 SV% | 2.43 GAA

Top Three Scorers: Mark Hartigan (37-38-75) Nate Dicasmirro (17-33-50) Ryan Malone (24-25-49)

2012-13 SCSU HUSKIES (25-16-1 overall / 18-9-1 WCHA )

The only SCSU men’s hockey team to advance to the Frozen Four, this team relied upon solid team play and the leadership of seniors Drew LeBlanc, the eventual All-American and Hobey Baker winner and Ben Hanowski and junior, Nic Dowd to lead the offense. The team also saw the emergence of first-year players Kalle Kossila and Jonny Brodzinski (22 goals) who played key roles in the NCAA run. Offensive defenseman, Nick Jensen’s play was reminiscent of the 2000-01 team’s Duvie Westcott and he was named an All-American. Six players on this squad became the foundation for the success of the current SCSU team. Ryan Faragher put up solid numbers in goal. Nationally, the team was tied for #3 in offense, tied for #17 in defense, #29 on the power play and #33 on the penalty kill.

  • Offense: 3.36 Goals Per Game
  • Defense: 2.45 Goals Allowed Per Game
  • Power Play: 17.14%
  • Penalty Kill: 81.9 %

Goaltender: Ryan Faragher .914 SV% | 2.27 GAA

Top Three Scorers: Drew LeBlanc (13-37-50) Nic Dowd (14-25-39) Ben Hanowski (17-14-31)

2013-14 SCSU HUSKIES (22-11-5 / 15-6-3 WCHA)

This SCSU squad relied on their post-season experience and the emergence of some young players to advance to within a  game of another Frozen Four appearance. Nic Dowd was an outstanding team leader and became a Hobey Baker finalist and All-American at seasons end. Nic Dowd and Jonny Brodzinski were the goal scorers on a fairly well-balanced scoring attack and had  22 and 21 goals respectively. Kalle Kossila broke out with a 40 point season and Kevin Gravel, Ethan Prow and Andrew Prochno led the defense. Ryan Faragher started the majority of games in goal but Charlie Lindgren began to secure some ownership of the position by years end. Nationally, the offense was #4, Defense tied for #34, Power Play #3 and Penalty Kill #52.

  • Offense: 3.58 Goals Per Game
  • Defense: 2.82 Goals Per Game
  • Power Play: 25.34%
  • Penalty Kill: 76.9%

Goaltender: Ryan Faragher .905 SV% | 2.708 GAA Charlie Lindgren .905 SV% | 2.41 GAA

Top Three Scorers: Jonny Brodzinski (21-20-41) Nic Dowd (22-18-40) Kalle Kossila (13-27-40)

So, are we ready to anoint the 2015-16 team as the most prolific SCSU Huskies ever? It is interesting that the two teams finished with an identical 31-9-1 record. Also, both teams lost in the first round of the NCAA playoffs. As the season came to a close, you’ll note the top three scorers on the 2015-16 squad didn’t displace the top three on the 2000-01 team in total points. However this years team posted 489 total points vs 437 for the 2000-01 team. Charlie Lindgren failed to top the save percentage earned by Scott Meyer in that previous year. Clearly the power play, offense and defensive numbers came out on top and even though the penalty kill really came through the last two and a half months in 2015-16 it didn’t top the PK of the 2000-01 team. So, what do you think?





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