Monday, January 31, 2011

Mandi Schwartz Profiled On AOL.com

(above) Former Yale hockey player Mandi Schwartz is the sister of CC players Jaden & Rylan Schwartz

AOL.com has a pretty amazing story today about Mandi Schwartz and her ongoing and up and down battle with Leukemia.

Denver Cimbs To #2 In Latest Poll

(above) DU is up to #2 in latest USCHO.com Poll today. As usual Colorado College is last.

DU #3 In USA Today Poll


CC Captain Predicts Tigers Will Win Gold Pan

(left) CC Captain Ryan Lowery is confident this week

“We’re looking forward to going out and winning back the Gold Pan Trophy.” Colorado College hockey Captain Ryan Lowery said in Monday's Colorado Springs Gazette.

Ramsey Calls DU "Evil Empire Of The North"

(left) Colorado Springs Gazette columnist David Ramsey tried to light a fire under the ass of the Colorado College hockey team today by recalling past DU thrashings of CC

From: Colorado Springs Gazette

by David Ramsey


You could say Colorado College’s Tigers did a nice job of sleepwalking through Saturday’s 6-0 loss to North Dakota, but that only insults sleepwalkers.

This was a disturbing, humiliating surrender by the Tigers on a silent night at World Arena.

And yet …

This defeat, if handled correctly, could serve as the perfect warmup for the University of Denver. Yes, the Evil Empire of the North invades World Arena Friday night, and it will be excessively ugly if the Tigers play with anywhere close to this level of apathy [read rest of article].

DU Alum Tyler Ruegsegger Traded To Alaska

(left) Tyler Ruegsegger looks to jumpstart his professional career in Alaska

From: Anchorage Daily News

by Doyle Woody


When word reached Tyler Ruegsegger last week that the Utah Grizzlies had traded him to the Alaska Aces [ECHL] and he was scheduled to fly to Anchorage within a few hours, the rookie forward immediately recalled an unsettling memory.

"Not that flight again,'' Ruegsegger thought, mindful of a turbulent descent into Anchorage when he played for the University of Denver [read rest of article].

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Bye Weekend Pays Dividends For DU

University of Denver received some good news over the bye weekend besides the obvious opportunity for players with nagging injuries to heal.

#1 ranked Yale lost two games over the weekend to conference opponents Union and RPI. DU inched closer to Yale in the Pairwise ranking and another loss by Yale coupled with their easier schedule would give DU the #1 ranking in college hockey as long as the Pioneers keep winning.

DU's two biggest rivals played over the weekend in Colorado Springs. Colorado College defeated North Dakota 4-2 on Friday night. UND star defenseman Chay Genoway injured his knee in the game. On Saturday night The Sioux bounced back 6-0 and CC goaltender Joe Howe left the game, also with a knee injury.

DU plays Colorado College next weekend.

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Chicago Area Alumni To Watch DU-CC Game

The Chicago DU Alumni Chapter invites you
DU vs. CC Hockey Watch Party

Gaslight Bar & Grille
2426 N Racine Ave
Racine & Montana - one block north of Fullerton
2 Blocks East of CTA Brown/Red, and 76 Bus, Street Parking


Saturday, February 5, 2011
DU Hockey vs. Colorado College
LIVE on Fox Sports Net-Rocky Mountain
7:30 pm - 11:30 pm


Chicago area CC alumni will also be attending.
Let's see which school has the better hockey fans!

Questions or need more info?
Kevin Friduss: kevinfriduss@gmail.com
Meg Loomis: mploomis@gmail.com

Friday, January 28, 2011

DU Alum Keri Herman Wins Silver At X-Games

(above) DU Alum Keri Herman won Silver at the X-Games in Aspen yesterday

From: Denver Post

The first gold of X-Games 15 went to Kaya Turski, who won the women's skiing slopestyle Thursday afternoon. The Montreal native won last year, and on her first run Thursday scored a 93.66. It was enough to hold off Keri Herman, who now trains in Breckenridge.

Herman, who moved to Colorado in 2001 to attend the University of Denver, has been slowly climbing up the ranks. She graduated from DU in 2005 and has been training in Breckenridge since 2004. She finished fourth last year in her inaugural X Games [read rest of article].

BU Bad Boy Kicked Off Team For Studying Too Much

(left) When Andrew Glass pulled the old, "I missed the workout because I was studying excuse" Jack Parker kicked him off the Boston University hockey team

From: USCHO.com


After being abrubtly cut from the Boston University squad earlier this month, junior forward Andrew Glass gave his side of the story to the Boston Hockey Blog.

BU coach Jack Parker said he dismissed Glass for violating team rules, but Glass rebuffs that, saying he missed two meetings and missed a pre-holiday practice, later changed to a workout, due to a final exam.

“By NCAA rules,” Glass said, “a team cannot have organized practices or workouts during exam week and based upon the past two years, if you had conflicts, you completed the workouts on your own time. Not only was I studying in the library, but I came right afterwards around 3:30 to workout.

“I was the only player on the team to have a final exam the next day, and because the team was in New York for the majority of the weekend, I had little time to study. Nonetheless, I figured that taking care of my academics was something I shouldn’t have to explain, let alone get punished for” [Read rest of article].

Thursday, January 27, 2011

College Hockey Inc. Profiles Drew Shore

College Hockey Inc.'s Website has a good article on University of Denver forward Drew Shore. The article looks at why Shore's performance has improved markedly this season.
"We think he has the potential to be a great two-way center in the NHL. We obviously like his size and the fact he will get even bigger. He put a strong emphasis on strength and conditioning and that impressed us and I know the coaching staff at Denver has done a great job with him. You look at where he is now compared to last season and I think he has improved tremendously. I like his attitude and willingness to learn and improve, and I think that's why you're seeing the production this season. He's more confident on the puck and winning those hard battles."
-Mike Yandle, Florida Panthers Scout

DU Recruit Scott Mayfield Radio Interview

(above) Scott Mayfield will play at DU next season

DU recruit Scott Mayfield (6'4, 194 lbs.) is projected to be a first round selection next summer in the NHL Draft. He was interviewed on the Pipeline Show in Edmonton.

DU Alum Paul Stastny Named To NHL All-Star Game

(above) DU Alum Paul Statsny has been selected for his second NHL All-Star game


From: USA Today

Colorado Avalanche center Paul Stastny have been chosen for this weekend's All-Star game.

The NHL announced Wednesday that Stastny is one of two injury replacements for Pittsburgh stars Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin for the game Sunday in Raleigh, N.C.

Stastny will be making his first appearance at the All-Star game. He was selected in 2008 but was injured and didn't play.

Stastny's father, Peter, played in six NHL All-Star games during his 15-year career from 1980-1995. The Stastnys' will become the eighth father-son tandem in NHL history to play in the All-Star game.

Stastny has 42 points in 47 games. His teammate, Matt Duchene, also will play.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Gwozdecky Possible Michigan State Candidate

(above) The Lansing State Journal mentioned that DU coach George Gwozdecky might be on Michigan State's "Wish List" as a possible candidate for their now vacant head coaching job

From: Lansing State Journal
by Neil Koepke


Four seasons after guiding Michigan State to the 2007 NCAA Championship, Rick Comley is leaving his job as Spartan hockey coach. Comley, 64, announced Tuesday that he's stepping down as MSU coach after this season and retiring from coaching after 38 years.

The most likely candidates would appear to be three coaches with MSU backgrounds - Danton Cole, who's in his first season coaching the U.S. National Team Development Program's Under-17 team in Ann Abor; George Gwozdecky, in his 17th season at the University of Denver, and Newell Brown, a longtime NHL assistant coach now with the Vancouver Canucks.

Both Cole (1985-89) and Brown (1980-84) played at MSU for coach Ron Mason, who hired Comley in 2002 when Mason stepped down to become athletic director. Brown also served as an assistant coach at MSU under Mason.

Gwozdecky, who won NCAA titles with Denver in 2004 and 2005, was an assistant coach under Mason from 1984-1989.

"I expect hockey at Michigan State to be competing for national championships year in and year out,'' Hollis said.

"You're not going to win it every year, but you want to be in a position in which you're competing for that every year.''

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Matt Tabrum Commits To The University Of Denver

From: USHL.com

Matt Tabrum (5'10 189 lbs) has committed to play collegiate hockey at the University of Denver following his USHL career. Matt began playing youth hockey in Colorado Springs while his father was an assistant coach at Colorado College and later worked for USA Hockey as the Director of Coaching Education.

Tabrum has tallied 12 points (24 games-10g, 2a) in 30 games this season. The recently turned 20-year-old was acquired from the Sioux Falls Stampede in early January. He has three multi-goal games this season, including a hat trick on November 6th vs. Youngstown. Tabrum made his USHL debut during the 2009-10 season, playing two games with the Stampede until an injury ended his season.

Tabrum's father Mark was an assistant coach at Colorado College from 1993-99.
2011 Recruiting Class
D Scott Mayfield (Youngstown, USHL)
F Zac Larraza (U.S. Under-18)
F Garrett Allen (Fargo, USHL)
D Joey LaLeggia (Penticton Vees, BCHL)
F Larkin Jacobson (Janesville Jets, NAHL)
D Wade Bennett (Wichita Falls, NAHL)
F Matt Tabrum (Omaha, USHL)

2012 Recruiting Class
D Matt Van Voorhis (U.S. Under-18)
F Tyler Pham (Colorado Thunderbirds-U18)
D Dakota Mermis (U.S. Under-17)
D Josiah Didier (Cedar Rapids, USHL)
F Daniel Doremus (Sioux Falls, USHL)

2013 Recruiting Class
F Brad Hawkinson (Colorado Thunderbirds-U18)

News & Notes From Around PioNation

Jason Zucker is profiled in today's Denver Post. Mike Chambers says that the WCHA scoring leader with 17 goals and 24 points is a shoo-in for WCHA Rookie of the Year.
----------
The DU Clarion student newspaper has an article about Jesse Martin's TEDxDU Speech last week.
----------
DU recruit Joey Laleggia has scored a point in 18 consecutive games for the BCHL Penticton Vees. With only four regular season games remaining, Penticton is gearing up for the playoffs.
----------
Paul Stastny scored his 100th career NHL goal on Saturday night. Stastny still has a ways to go to catch DU's all-time NHL goal scorer Glenn Anderson who scored 498 times.
----------
Rhett Rakhshani's second trip up to the NHL didn't go so well. He suffered a concussion and only appeared in one game. He was sent back down to the AHL Bridgeport Sound yesterday. He did draw an NHL salary for nine days.

Denver #3 In Latest Poll

Monday, January 24, 2011

Chambers Blog: MacNaughton Not Target For DU

An interesting posting in Mike Chambers Blog about the MacNaughton Cup and DU's run-up to the end of the regular season. The University of Denver has more hardware than any other program in the WCHA when you tally up MacNaughton Cups, Broodmoor Trophies and National Championships. Chambers interviewed Coach Gwozdecky about DU's strategy for the rest of the season.

Clearly the Coach wants the boys focused, fit and ready for the NCAA Tournament at the end of the season.

Denver Post: DU Eyes Firmly On Grand Prize

From: Denver Post
by Mark Kiszla

There's a rumbling in the gut of the hockey monster created by DU coach George Gwozdecky. And there's only one way to feed the beast: Win another NCAA championship.

"The countdown clock has started for the postseason," Gwozdecky said Saturday.

The Pioneers' 5-1 defeat of Alaska-Anchorage sent 6,033 fans home happy but left the only person who really matters thoroughly unimpressed.

"We need to work on some things between our ears to avoid playing with the disinterest and lack of passion that we showed at times in this game," Gwozdecky said. "I certainly think when we crank it up and we're interested, we're pretty good" [rest of article].

Puck To His Grill Costs Paukovich His Chicklets

(left) DU Alum Geoff Paukovich took a puck to the mouth during a recent ECHL hockey game in Alaska

From: Las Vegas Review Journal

by Todd Dewey


Imagine taking a blistering puck to the mouth that caves in your top four front teeth and leaves a gash on your lip that requires 15 stitches to close.

Now imagine not being able to see a dentist until the next day -- when he'll snap your teeth back into place -- and, in the meantime, writhing in agony all night as blood pours from your mouth and onto your pillow.

That was the misery Wranglers center Geoff Paukovich suffered this month in Alaska, where he incurred the injuries in a game against the Aces.

But the physical pain Paukovich experienced pales in comparison to the mental and emotional anguish he has suffered since he accidentally broke the neck of former Las Vegas defenseman Robbie Bina during a college game in 2005.

"It was a play that changed my life," said Paukovich, 24. "It still lives with me to this day.

"It was one of those things in life where if you had three wishes and could go back and change things, that would definitely be one of them."

The fateful play took place March 18, 2005, when Paukovich, then a freshman at the University of Denver, checked Bina, a North Dakota sophomore, from behind and sent him crashing headfirst into the boards.

"It was a delayed penalty. He knew it was a delayed penalty and I didn't," Paukovich said. "And when he went to touch the puck, he kind of let up and I kept going full steam through him, thinking he was getting the puck. The next thing I know he was laying on the ice.

"Never would you think it was that serious, but it was, and it changed my life forever and it changed his life forever."

A native of Englewood, Colo., Paukovich realized his childhood dream that season by helping the Pioneers to the national title.

But consumed by guilt over the injury he had caused, he soon lost his desire to play hockey.

"My sophomore year was pretty much a write-off," he said. " I honestly didn't want to play hockey because I felt sick about it."

He also struggled to deal with the venom directed at him and his family from many North Dakota fans, who Paukovich said threatened him on Facebook and in e-mails and harassed his parents with phone calls to their home.

"It was crazy," he said. "It took me a full year just to get back comfortable playing again and getting used to living with that stigma of being that guy that did that."

Taken in the second round of the 2004 NHL Draft by the Edmonton Oilers and recruited by Denver, in large part, for his propensity for playing "on the edge," the 6-foot-4-inch, 215-pound Paukovich also started to alter his style of play.

"I would second-guess myself every time I would look to go make a physical play," he said. "It took me a year to get over that.

"I'm definitely more aware of it now, not just burying someone to bury someone. But it's not the first thing I'm thinking about when I get on the ice."

Now a fourth-year pro, Paukovich has been a key player this season for Las Vegas (24-11-3), which lost to the Bakersfield Condors (21-18-1) 1-0 on Saturday night at the Orleans Arena.

"He is the ultimate team player. He does all the stuff a lot of players don't want to do," Wranglers coach Ryan Mougenel said. "He's definitely a huge reason why we've had success here. I think he's enjoying playing again."

Nearly six years removed from the play that changed his life, Paukovich has since made his peace with Bina, who he now considers a friend.

The two cleared the air a couple of years ago when they were in Edmonton's training camp together, and they also were teammates in Springfield during the 2008-09 season.

"The biggest thing for me was when Robbie and I played together, one of the things we both got was closure," Paukovich said. "It's a true credit to him. He actually came up to me and was basically like, 'Hey, things happen. It's not going to be an issue.'

"Obviously, I apologized -- as much as I could at that point. We talked probably five minutes about it, and that was it. Ever since then, any talk we've had has been as teammates and friends."

After sitting out the season following his injury, Bina bounced back strong for the Fighting Sioux and is now playing professionally in Germany. He was named an ECHL All-Star last season for Las Vegas before leaving for Europe.

"The thing I'm most thankful for is he was able to continue his career," Paukovich said. "He's healthy, and he's still able to do what he loves."

Sunday, January 23, 2011

DU Hockey Alumni 50-50 Raffle Off To Brisk Start

The DU Hockey Alumni Association's 50-50 Raffle was held for the first time this weekend. On Friday night they sold $1083 worth of tickets. On Saturday night they sold $1426 worth of tickets.

The DUHAA would like to thank everyone who participated. Like LetsGoDU and the Boone Movement, the DU Hockey Raffle is a great way for fans to participate on a grass roots level.

The DU Hockey Alumni Association will use the proceeds to assist the DU Hockey Program.

The next Raffle will be against Colorado College on Saturday, Feb 5th.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Justin Jones Leaves DU And Returns To NAHL

(above) Justin Jones leaves DU after not appearing in a single game

From: NAHL.com

Texas Tornado Head Coach and General Manager Tony Curtale has announced that former Texas Tornado forward Justin Jones has returned to the team after spending the first semester at the University of Denver. “There were a variety of reasons he decided to leave school,” said Curtale.

“I think Justin returning to the team will allow him to focus on developing more as a player and get him into a better collegiate situation where is more comfortable and can get the playing time he wants and deserves.” Last season, Jones had 20 points in 54 games played for the Tornado, but was 2nd on the team in playoff scoring with three points in five games. In order to make room for Jones, the Tornado parted ways with forward Patrick Gregory, who played two games with Texas, recording two assists.

Denver 5 - Alaska Anchorage 1 FINAL

(above) Boone & this future Pioneer hockey player were featured on the Fox broadcast last night

The University of Denver rolled to a 5-2 victory over the University of Alaska-Anchorage in Magness Arena on Saturday night.

UAA jumped out to an early 1-0 lead, but a three goal explosion late in the first period sealed the game. Jarrod "Never Nervous" Mermis scored his first career goal from a beautiful pass from Beau Bennett to open the scoring. Two minutes later Anthony Maiani scored a shorthanded goal that seemed to break the back of the Seawolves. 23 seconds later Beau Bennett added a highlight reel goal.

Kyle Ostrow scored early in the second period, that capped a stunning four goals in under five minute explosion. Jason Zucker nailed the coffin shut with a third period tally.

DU stands all alone in first place the WCHA.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Denver 3 - Alaska Anchorage 2 FINAL

The University of Denver scored the third fastest goal in school history and held Alaska Anchorage at arms length for most of the evening, before prevailing 3-2. Kyle Ostrow provided the early spark on a great pass from Anthony Maiani 9 seconds into the game.

Kyle Ostrow added a second goal and Beau Bennett recorded the game winner in the third period. Anchorage native Adam Murray recorded his fourth consecutive victory for the Pioneers in goal.

Thanks to Nebraska-Omaha's 8-4 victory at North Dakota, DU leapfrogged the Sioux and moved into first place in the WCHA.




Denver Post Interviews Jesse Martin

(above) Jesse Martin and John Lee talk during practice yesterday


To say that Mike Chambers interview with Jesse Martin in today's Denver Post contains a few surprises would be an understatement. Check out the article.

Chambers Blog: 15 Year-Old Prospect Visits DU

(above) Eric Comrie has been described as the top 15 year-old goaltender in North America

Mike Chambers Blog has the details of 15 year-old goaltender recruit Eric Comrie's (6'0 170 lbs. - Newport Beach, CA.) visit to DU this week. Comrie is the half-brother of former University of Denver star Paul Comrie.

Despite his young age, Eric has already won two USA Hockey national championship in as many years with the Los Angeles Selects. He guided the Selects to the Under-15 National Championship in 2009 and the Under-12 Championship in 2007.

One would have to think that if he decides to attend the University of Denver, he'll prepare by playing with the U.S. National Development Program in Ann Arbor for two seasons.

Comrie
was the first goaltender selected in the WHL Draft by the Tri-Cities Americans with the 13th overall selection. He has the talent to be considered to be a potential NHL first round draft pick which is extremely rare for a goaltender.

The decision on playing major juniors or college hockey is going to come down to which route will best develop his skills to have a shot at the NHL. Private tutoring under a full-time goaltending guru like Derek Lalonde and plenty of time in the weight room versus playing a plethora of games (perhaps as many as 100 per season) in the WHL.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Video Link To Jesse Martin's TEDxDU Speech


(above) Jesse Martin spoke at the TEDxDU Luncheon on Thursday

University of Denver senior Jesse Martin was a featured speaker at the TEDxDU Xpress: Overcoming Adversity event held Thursday on the DU campus. Over 200 people attended the seminar.

Martin gave a powerful speech about his life-changing experience for close to 30 minutes. Even if you knew many of the details of his neck injury suffered in North Dakota last year, its gripping to hear his version as events unfolded. Even more stunning is his perspective on life and the people who influenced him in the weeks following the injury.

Coach Gwozdecky Live Chat On Thursday


A Live Online Chat with University of Denver hockey head coach George Gwozdecky was held today. Fans asked the two-time National Coach of the Year questions about this weekend's series against Alaska Anchorage and the Pioneer hockey program.

Hockey Site Looks At DU's Resilient Nature

From: USCHO.com
by Theresa Spisak

We all knew Denver would be pretty good coming into this season, despite all of its offseason losses in important roster chunks and goaltending.

If you had given the Pioneers the benefit of the doubt by looking at their history, their second-place spot in the league makes sense.

What’s been surprising, however, is how they’ve done it [read rest of article].

Jesse Martin To Speak At TEDxDU Event Today

(above) Jesse Martin will speak on campus at a TEDxDU Event about "overcoming adversity" on Thursday

Looking for a little inspiration? Want to hear about what Denver community members are DUing? Join TEDxDU as they present the first TEDxDU Xpress: Overcoming Adversity.

Sign-up for a free kickoff luncheon Thursday, January 20th from 12:00-1:15 PM and hear three TED style, short and proactive talks from Professor in DU's Graduate School of Professional Psychology, Dr. Kim Gorgens, Hockey Player, Jesse Martin, and student, Joe Monteith. Lunch will be provided.

The event will be held in the University of Denver's Ruffatto Hall.

Email: TEDXpress2011@gmail.com to register by midnight Tuesday, January 18th.
Jesse Martin
Born in Edmonton, Alberta, Jesse Martin began playing hockey at the age of four. Martin played hockey in Edmonton for thirteen years before participating in one year of Jr. Hockey in the Alberta Junior League. Additionally, Martin was drafted to the Atlanta Thrashers in 2006 and played for the Tri-City Storm in the United States Hockey League from 2006 to 2007. In September of 2007, Martin began attending the University of Denver and currently serves as an Alternate Captain for the team. Martin is an accomplished three-year letter winner and a three-year WCHA academic award winner. His hockey career was recently altered by a serious neck injury this season.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Mankato Free Press Impressed By DU's Firepower

(above) The Mankato fishwrap would prefer that Jason Zucker join the NHL's Minnesota Wild ASAP

From: Mankato Free Press
by Shane Frederick


I wonder how long it will be before Minnesota State hockey fans will be cheering for Jason Zucker.

Zucker, a freshman forward for Denver, is a second-round draft pick of the Minnesota Wild last summer. He leads all Western Collegiate Hockey Association rookies with 16 goals, including two against the Mavericks over the weekend.

With a fabulous, game-tying breakaway goal on Saturday, Zucker completed the Pioneers’ three-goal comeback, and Denver later shocked MSU 21 seconds into overtime [read rest of article]

NHL Scout To Moderate Panel Discussion At DU

(above) Toronto Maple Leafs GM Brian Burke and his family have been advocates for diversity in sports since the passing of his son, Brenden, last year

Thursday is going to be a busy day at the University of Denver. Coach Gwozdecky will hosting a live chat on the DU Athletic Department Website, Jesse Martin will be discussing "Overcoming Adversity" in Ruffatto Hall and an NHL Scout will hosting a panel discussion on gays and lesbians in sports in the Driscoll Ballroom.

Patrick Burke, a scout for the NHL’s Philadelphia Flyers and son of Toronto Maple Leafs GM Brian Burke—aims to create an educational conversation between currently-out athletes and an audience of students, players and coaches.

Athletes from around North America will be discussing issues relating surrounding gays in athletics. Burke's participation stems from his drive to continue work started by his late brother Brenden, who died tragically in an automobile accident last year. Brendan was an openly gay equipment manager of the University of Miami hockey team. In the wake of Brendan’s death, the Burke family vowed to continue the fight for equality in sports.

A Q&A session will follow the panel discussion. The panelists include Andrew Goldstein, former All-American goalie of the Dartmouth College lacrosse team; David Farber, former captain of the University of Pennsylvania hockey team; and Brandy Ranshaw, former U.S. Ski Team member and women’s pro circuit qualifier.
Where: The Driscoll Ballroom in the Driscoll Student Center on the University of Denver campus, 2055 East Evans.

When: Thursday, January 20, 2011, from 6:00 to 7:30 p.m.

Who: GForce Hockey Club is a multinational team of gay hockey players. The forum is co-sponsored by the University of Denver Undergrad Student Government; DU Gender & Women's Studies; DU Athletics & Recreation; and the Center for Multicultural Excellence.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Matt Carle's First NHL Fight Not Blogworthy


(above) DU Alum Matt Carle want to spend the offseason training in a Philly boxing gym

From: Philly Sports Daily
by Stephen Whyno

Madison Square Garden has been the scene for many great fights, including the first showdown between Muhammad Ali and Joe Frazier.

Let’s just say that Sean Avery vs. Matt Carle will not go down as one of the best fights in the history of the legendary arena.

Eight minutes into the second period with the Flyers leading the Rangers 3-0, a melee ensued that included guys pairing off and at least getting some words in with each other. Matt Walker (who’s a big guy) went with Kris Newbury, and it was a throwback kind of brawl. That is, until Avery got a hold of Carle and took some swings at the defenseman who simply isn’t a fighter.

“You know what kind of player he is; I didn’t really know what was going on and then the scrum happened and he tied me up and had my jersey wrapped over my head,” Carle told reporters afterward. “Next thing I knew I was getting punched in the face and I was on the ice.”

It was technically Carle’s first career NHL fight.

“I don’t know if I’d really call it a fight,” Carle said. “That’s what it says on the score sheet.”

Coach Peter Laviolette, tough guy Jody Shelley and others weren’t happy about how the incident happened.

“The hitting and the fighting, everything’s part of the game. I think what’s frustrating is we had lots of guys that wanted to have a little dance with Avery, but he wouldn’t respond. That’s what’s frustrating about the whole thing – he goes after matt Carle. I don’t think he has any fights in his whole career. We got lots of guys that wanted to do it; he just didn’t want to respond.”

Fighters taking on other fighters is a code of hockey; bad things usually happen when guys who don’t drop the gloves get picked on. As Carle pointed out, the Rangers were “up in arms” last season when Dan Carcillo fought Marian Gaborik.

But there was little retribution for Avery, though Shelley said it took a lot of restraint to keep him from doing something about it.

“It’s part of a 3-0 game in their building; you don’t wanna take a penalty, there are all kind of scenarios,” Shelley told reporters. “You know he’s gonna try to suck you in. it’s part of the game and that’s how it shook down.”

But that doesn’t mean he wasn’t trying to engage Avery throughout the rest of the game.

“I had identified a problem; I had a lot of things going in my head,” he said. “I just try to deal with it, as I’ve learned, between the rules. …

“You don’t like to see one of our guys take a punch. That was pretty much it; it’s not who it is or whatever. I don’t know what to say about that. It’s one of those situations that happens; you’d like to settle it a different way.”

DU Clarion Profiles Jason Zucker

(above) Jason Zucker started out playing Roller Hockey in Las Vegas

From: DU Clarion
by Alex Payne


With a roller hockey background, Jason Zucker is thriving in his freshman season for the Pioneer hockey team.

"I started playing [roller hockey] when I was 3, because of my brothers, and I just played in Las Vegas," Zucker said about his unique upbringing with roller hockey in the desert where ice is hard to find. Within a few years, he was playing ice hockey [read rest of article].

DU #4 In Latest Polls

(above) DU received one first-place vote in the USCHO.com Poll

Monday, January 17, 2011

Phoenix Based DU Alumni To Meet Gwozdecky

(above) Coach Gwozdecky will meet with DU alumni in Phoenix


Join fellow DU alums for a special evening when the Phoenix Coyotes take on the Edmonton Oilers at Jobing.com Arena.

Prior to the game, on the Coyotes Terrace Club Level, enjoy dinner, drinks and the opportunity to mingle with fellow Alumni, University Leadership and Special Guest, DU Head Men’s Hockey Coach, George Gwozdecky.

Phoenix, AZ
January 25 @ 5:00 p.m. (7:00 p.m. face-off)
Jobing.com Arena Coyotes Terrace Club Level

5:00 p.m. Buffet Dinner Begins
6:00 p.m. Coach Gwozdecky
7:00 p.m. Face-off!

Saturday, January 15, 2011

DU 4 - Minnesota State 3 FINAL OT

(above) Raise your hand if you choked up a three goal lead and lost the game in overtime

After giving up 3 goals in the first 22 minutes against Minnesota State, the University of Denver staged an epic comeback on Saturday night.

Beau-Bennett.com scored to pull DU within two in the second period, but the Pioneers still trailed 3-1 with nine minutes to play in the game. Then Nick Shore & Jason Zucker scored goals within two minutes of each other to level the score.

Dustin Jackson scored the game winner just 19 seconds into Overtime to stun the Mavericks.

Box Score

USCHO.com Game Recap

Mankato Free Press Blog Recap

Pairwise Rankings

WCHA Standings

First Star: Dustin Jackson (Denver)
Second Star: Chase Grant (Minnesota State)
Third Star: Nick Shore (Denver)

Friday, January 14, 2011

DU 4 - Minnesota State 4 FINAL OT

Klye Ostrow scored with 1:16 to play in regulation to salvage a tie for the University of Denver against Minnesota State.

Beau Bennett Website For Serious Fans

If you're not getting enough Beau Bennett coverage on LetsGoDU, there's always Beau-Bennett.com, the online source for Beau Bennett fans. Photos, videos and news about Beau streamed 24 hours a day.

Mankato Free Press Breaks Down MSU-M vs DU

(above) Minnesota State has been on a roll recently since losing two games to DU earlier in the season

While the University of Denver hockey team may be confident after sweeping Minnesota State earlier in the season, the Mavericks have quietly gone 8-2-0 since that weekend. Victories against Minnesota (sweep) and Notre Dame prove that MSU-M will be no pushovers at home for the Pioneers.

The Mankato Free Press features five things to know about the series.
"Denver is a very, very good hockey team. If you’re not clicking on all cylinders, they’re going to beat anybody and everybody."
-Troy Jutting, Minnesota State Head Coach

Denver Post: Shore & Zucker Discuss WJT

(above) The Denver Post interviewed DU's Drew Shore & Jason Zucker about their World Junior Tournament experience in Buffalo, NY over Christmas Break

For the University of Denver, it's a great time to look back, because the scary part is over and the damage was minimal.

Drew Shore and Jason Zucker are back from Buffalo, N.Y., back with the Pioneers — and college hockey's sixth-ranked team again has its stars aligned, on the same line [read rest of article].

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Adam Berkhoel Makes DU Sales Call

(above) DU legend Adam Berkhoel poses with goaltenders Sam Brittain and Adam Murray

Mike Chambers' Blog has all the details of Adam Berkhoel's visit to DU this week. Berkhoel recently retired from professional hockey that included a brief stint in the NHL. These days Berkhoel is working for Vaughn Hockey, which specializes in goaltender equipment.

Michigan Adds Two Players To Bad Boyz List

(left) At one time, Tristin Llewellyn was a 15 year-old NHL prospect that made scouts drool, today he's just another Bad Boy kicked off his team

When the weather turns cold throughout the Hockey Belt, college hockey players turn to alcohol and suspensions are sure to follow.

According to USCHO.com Michigan has suspended freshman forward Jacob Fallon and senior defenseman Tristin Llewellyn for the rest of the season, according to a published report in the Michigan Daily. Team spokesman Matt Trevor said Thursday morning the violations were behavior-related rather than performance related.

Last season, Fallon was suspended by the U.S. National Team Development Program and later left the NTDP for the USHL’s Indiana Ice. So yet another Junior Bad Boy graduates to the big leagues.

Llewellyn was one of the youngest players to verbally commit to a college hockey program when he committed to Michigan as a 15 year-old in 2005. He was also the youngest player in the USHL at the time of his commitment. Llewellyn's announcement sparked recruiting battles for younger and younger players among the college hockey power programs. Now his college career is over and one to wonder if the recruiting process at such an early age played a part in stunting his maturity.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Chambers Blog Has DU Hockey Updates

Mike Chambers Blog has details on injuries to Beau Bennett & Chris Knowlton. He also mentions the goaltending rotation this weekend against Minnesota State. Finally he's hoping to see Joey Brehm light up the lamp his weekend.

DU Alum Rakhshani Called Back Up To NHL

(above) Rhett Rakhshani in action last night against Vancouver

DU Alum Rhett Rakhshani was recalled from the Bridgeport Sound Tigers (AHL) by the New York Islanders. He played in Tuesday night's game against the Vancouver Canucks recoding two shots on goal in 11 minutes of action. Vancouver won 4-3 in a shootout.

Rakhshani, 22, led all Sound Tigers in goals (10), assists (22) and points (32) through the first 39 games of his rookie season. The Huntington Beach, CA, native’s 32 points lead all AHL rookies. This marks the second career NHL call-up for Rakhshani, who made his NHL debut with the Islanders on Dec. 13 against the Nashville Predators.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Boozing SCSU Players Turn Vans Into Beer Trucks

(above) Hide the women & children, the St. Cloud State hockey team is coming to town

It turns out that the St. Cloud University hockey players purchased large quantities of beer on the night of their famous victory over the University of Miami down in Florida over Christmas break.

The Naples News Blog has all the juicy details.

"Following the tournament's championship game, I finished my work and was headed home. I stopped for gas at the new Race Trac gas station near the intersection of Daniels and I-75. Also there were three 15-passenger vans carrying the entire St. Cloud State hockey team.

As I filled my car up with gas, I watched player after player leave the store with beer and get into the vans. I figured the team was celebrating the tournament victory, but I also wondered how team officials, who were driving the vans, could allow players to buy large amounts of beer and bring them on the team van."

Of course as we now know Bad Boyz Tony Mossey and Chris Hepp were kicked off the team due to an incident later that night and star Sophomore David Eddy was suspended. There has been speculation that Eddy was the player that required medical attention later that evening.

The St. Cloud Times confirmed that a SCSU player was admitted to a local Emergency Room that evening. In the same article the school president even jumped into the act and blasted the team's resident Bad Boyz, Hepp & Mosey.

Sounds like all the details didn't make it back to St. Cloud, Minnesota and some players were thrown under the bus....er.....beer van.

DU Recruits Wade Bennett For 2011

(above) Californian defenseman Wade Bennett will join his younger brother Beau at the University of Denver next season

From: The Examiner

Just a month after joining the NAHL Wichita Falls Wildcats, defenseman Wade Bennett has committed to the University of Denver for next season according to an announcement by the team.

Bennett has scored two goals in eight games with Wichita Falls, including being credited with the game winning goal in his Wildcats debut against Corpus Christi on December 10.

The Gardena, California native will join his younger brother Beau who is currently a freshman at Denver and was selected in the first round of the 2010 NHL Entry Draft by the Pittsburgh Penguins.

"It's pretty cool to get to play with my brother," Bennett said after the announcement. "It's not often you get to do that, so it'll be great for my family to get to watch us together."

Bennett played 26 games in the British Columbia Hockey League before coming to the Wildcats. The future Pioneer was also a teammate of the Wildcats Ryan Frost with the Tier I AAA L.A. Kings program.

The University of Denver is tied with North Dakota for the second most NCAA Division I hockey championships with seven, the most recent being back-to-back championships in 2004 and 2005. Only Michigan has more with nine.

Senior Chris Nutini and junior Luke Salazar, two former Wildcats, currently play for the Pioneers. Nutini played for Wichita Falls from 2005-07, while Salazar played from 2006-08.
2011 Recruiting Class
D Scott Mayfield (Youngstown, USHL)
F Zac Larraza (U.S. Under-18)
F Garrett Allen (Fargo, USHL)
D Joey LaLeggia (Penticton Vees, BCHL)
F Larkin Jacobson (Janesville Jets, NAHL)
D Wade Bennett (Wichita Falls, NAHL)

2012 Recruiting Class
D Matt Van Voorhis (U.S. Under-18)
F Tyler Pham (Colorado Thunderbirds-U18)
D Dakota Mermis (U.S. Under-17)
D Josiah Didier (Cedar Rapids, USHL)
F Daniel Doremus (Sioux Falls, USHL)

2013 Recruiting Class
F Brad Hawkinson (Colorado Thunderbirds-U18)

Denver Post Profiles DU Alum Greg Woods

(above) DU Alum Greg Woods is DU's all-time points leader for a defenseman [51 goals & 125 assists]

From: Denver Post
by Irv Moss

As an American player at a time when Canada, the Soviet Union and Czechoslovakia were considered the hockey capitals of the world, it might be difficult to understand why Greg Woods would have bittersweet thoughts about the Miracle on Ice.

Woods had just completed a brilliant career as a defenseman on the University of Denver hockey team. In 1980, a year after his final season for the Pioneers, the underdog U.S. Olympic team captured an improbable gold medal at Lake Placid, N.Y., which became the sports story of the century for many fans [read rest of story].

Clarion: Pioneers Take On Minnesota State

(above) Today's DU Clarion profiles the upcoming Minnesota State series

From: DU Clarion
by Tyler Perlmutter


LinkDU hockey plays WCHA-foe Minnesota State on Friday for the second time this season as the Pioneers begin the second half of their conference schedule the road.

The Pioneers (13-5-4) have won seven of their last 10 games (7-1-2) and already have the upper hand in the season series. Denver swept Minnesota State (8-8-4) in an early season home series, beating the Mavericks 3-2 on Nov. 12 and then 6-1 the next night [read rest of article].

Monday, January 10, 2011

DU Recruit Joey Laleggia Is Tearing Up BCHL

(above) DU recruit Joey Laleggia is the leading scoring defenseman in the BCHL with 19 goals & 40 assists in 41 games

From: Penticton Western News
by Emanuel Sequeira


Penticton Vees defenceman and DU recruit Joey Laleggia is on a 12-game point streak but he’s more concerned with helping his team have more success and win a BCHL championship.

Joey Laleggia cares more about team success than personal.

A golden example is the Penticton Vees defenceman’s response when asked about his current 12-game point streak, in which he has four goals and 14 points.

“I had no idea,” said Laleggia. “This is definitely the first I’ve heard of it. We have been playing very well as a team lately.”

And there you have it. Nothing about him working on his lethal one-timers after practice. Nothing about how he isn’t afraid to carry the puck up the ice to create chances or be one of the keys to the Vees’ third-ranked power play. It wasn’t until later in the interview that he talked about how being an offensive weapon is part of his game. Instead, he quickly deflected and briefly mentioned a rough 3-1 loss to rival Vernon on New Year’s Day. A game which he still collected an assist on Brendan O’Donnell’s goal.

“It’s all a learning experience and we will be ready for those guys when playoff time comes around,” said Laleggia, who Vees fans love, especially the teenage girls who bring their homemade signs dubbing him the Italian Stallion. “As for individual success, it’s hand in hand with team success.”

After having a successful rookie campaign in which the Burnaby native led all defenceman with 13 goals and 65 points in 54 games, Laleggia has surpassed last season’s goal total with 18 and is poised to set a new career high in points in what is likely his final junior A season.

Teammate Garrett Milan said Laleggia’s success comes from putting himself in open areas for scoring chances.

“He’s got a great shot back there and he loves to use it,” said Milan. “With him finding open areas to use that shot it’s just going to get him more and more points. He helps us get on the board on the power play, which is running great right now. He’s a big part of that and he’s a big part of all our offensive plays.”

“He’s been playing real well,” said Vees coach-GM Fred Harbinson. “I think he’s a great example of a person who has taken a slower path. He took the extra year of midget and it really helped him coming in having an outstanding rookie year for us. Instead of taking a year off early and going to college, he came back for his second year of junior.”

The Vees coach added that Laleggia, who will join former teammate Beau Bennett with the Denver Pioneers in the Western Collegiate Hockey Association, is proving that he is able to produce without Denver Manderson and Bennett.

Laleggia models his game after Norris Trophy winner Duncan Keith.

“He’s good in all three zones,” said Laleggia, who is also a Wayne Gretzky fan. “Unbelievable in the offensive zone but then he’s shutting down the first line on the other team. He’s the all-around defenceman, He played here so he’s really a guy I look up to.”

While Laleggia still makes some mistakes in his zone, Harbinson has noticed that part of his game improving.

“First I think (assistant coach) Mike Hengen has done a great job with our D-core,” said Harbinson. “Our D respect him. I think Joey is a smart kid and sometimes it’s just time. Some leave before the time is right. He kills penalties and is put in a situation that maybe he was not a year ago. We’re real happy with him and we’re going to need him to continue that trend in the last 19 games and playoffs.”

Playing better defensively was important for Laleggia to focus on after last year.

“I feel, and the coaching staff feels, I’ve improved and killing penalties now and feeling good, feeling more confident,” said Laleggia, who will be looking to help the Vees defeat the Surrey Eagles at home tonight. “I have learned a lot from my teammates Derik Johnson, Tyler Hlookoff, Paul Bezzo, Kyle Beaulieau, guys like that are very sound, very good in their own end. I’m just going to keep on trying to improve. The coaching staff has done a lot to help me.”

Redline Report Lists DU's Recruiting Class #4

From: Madison.com
by Andy Baggot

The latest issue of Red Line Report ranks the top 2011 college recruiting classes from the early signing period and the University of Denver was ranked Fourth.

Red Line is a subscription based website that focuses mainly on draft-eligible prospects.
1. North Dakota
2. Miami
3. Minnesota
4. Denver
5. Harvard
6. Ohio State
7. Vermont
8. Cornell
9. Northeastern
2011 Recruiting Class
D Scott Mayfield (Youngstown, USHL)
F Zac Larraza (U.S. Under-18)
F Garrett Allen (Fargo, USHL)
D Joey LaLeggia (Penticton Vees, BCHL)
F Larkin Jacobson (Janesville Jets, NAHL)

2012 Recruiting Class
D Matt Van Voorhis (U.S. Under-18)
F Tyler Pham (Colorado Thunderbirds-U18)
D Dakota Mermis (U.S. Under-17)
D Josiah Didier (Cedar Rapids, USHL)
F Daniel Doremus (Sioux Falls, USHL)

2013 Recruiting Class
F Brad Hawkinson (Colorado Thunderbirds-U18)

Wrenn Plays First Game In Portland

The Portland Winterhawks overcame a 4-1 first period deficit to earn a 5-4 shootout win at home Sunday against the Everett Silvertips in front of 2,347 fans at the Memorial Coliseum. Former DU player William Wrenn, playing his second game for the Winterhawks, didn't factor in the scoring but was +3 for the game.

Wrenn has been in the starting lineup in both games since leaving DU.

Sunday, January 09, 2011

Is #1 Ranked Yale Using An Illegal Player?

(above) Yale may be forced top forfeit many games they won this season if forward Chris Cahill is found ineligible

College Hockey News is reporting that the #1 ranked Yale Bulldogs could be coming under NCAA scrutiny because of eligibility questions surrounding forward Chris Cahill.

The issue surrounds Cahill's time last season playing in a French hockey league. The league has some players that are paid, meaning, whether he was paid or not, according to NCAA rules, he becomes ineligible [read entire article].

Saturday, January 08, 2011

Chambers Blog Details Wrenn's Departure

Mike Chambers Blog has a detailed posting on William Wrenn's departure from DU. The big beneficiary of Wrenn's exit is Sophomore Paul Phillips who will undoubtedly receive more shifts on the blueline.

Rocky Mountain Pond Hockey Championships

Hanging out in Vail and playing Pond Hockey all day with your buddies. Sound like fun. The event will kick off in a couple of weeks with youth and adult tournaments.

Several DU hockey alums have formed teams.

Located in the heart of Colorado, the Vail Valley - The Rocky Mountain Pond Hockey Championships (RMPHC) is a celebration of hockey in the truest sense, and your participation makes this celebration unique among all other hockey tournaments. By participating you will be a part of a select group of hockey players, players that play for the love of the game.

The RMPHC is being presented as an event to bring together players and teams from across the Rocky Mountain region and beyond. Every hockey player that ever laced up a pair of skates and went out onto the "pond" knows that feeling when the blade cuts into the ice and a cool breeze hits your face. The years may have past, but that feeling is still there, just waiting to be awakened with the first stride across a clear sheet of outdoor ice. The games will be like old times on the pond, with a fire lit on the side to keep warm and a warming house just waiting for the post game chatter.

You also will have the satisfaction in knowing that the success of your team and the success of this event will benefit local youth hockey programs in our area. It is called " giving back to the game" and your support will help many children learn to love the game of hockey the way you have all these years.

So be ready to lace up the skates, put on the extra t-shirt under that old jersey, and be ready to be a part of the Rocky Mountain Pond Hockey Championships.