Sunday, October 19, 2008

"Pat, I'd Like To Buy A Goal..."

Make that multiple goals.

This weekend was not the greatest way to start conference play, but it could've been much worse. Indeed, the Huskies were swept by the #3 Colorado College Tigers, 2-0 and 4-2.

On Friday evening, the stellar play of senior goaltender Rob Nolan kept the Huskies alive for most of the game. He stopped 36 of 38 shots, including 18 shots alone in the 2nd period, making several outstanding saves. Unfortunately, the offense gave him absolutely no support after the first 10 minutes of the game, with the Tigers spending a majority of the time in the MTU zone. CC's Scott McCulloch capitalized on a shorthanded breakaway after poking the puck away from Deron Cousens at the blueline and skating it down the ice, deking right and beating Nolan five-hole with a backhand. That goal turned out to be the game winner. Alex Gagne fanned on what was probably the best opportunity all night for the Huskies to beat reigning WCHA Player/Rookie of the Year, CC sophomore goaltender Richard Bachman, taking just one second too long to shoot the puck.

Saturday evening, Tech started out slow, handing the Tigers a goal in the first five minutes of the game and beginning the parade to the sin bin that has become all too familiar with Husky teams as of late. Bachman robbed Ryan Bunger with a diving save on Tech's best offensive chance in the first period. Finally, in the second period, sophomore Jordan Baker got MTU on the board, poking the puck home in the midst of a crease fustercluck, with freshman Alex MacLeod picking up his first collegiate assist after scoring two PP markers last weekend, and sophomore Bennett Royer also grabbing his first assist of the year. Unfortunately, a mistake by the Tech defense early in the third allowed Bill Sweatt to capitalize on a pass from Eric Walsky, skating in behind the defenders and wristing a shot into the top-corner of the net over Nolan's left shoulder. Steve Schultz extended CC's lead to two goals with a PP marker about halfway through the third.

The Huskies called their TO and pulled Nolan with 2:31 to play in regulation. The move paid off when freshman Brett Olson scored his first collegiate goal, firing the puck through traffic and past Bachman with 21 seconds remaining. Unfortunately, CC iced the game with a long-range ENG that slipped into the empty net with about 2 seconds left on the clock, leading to the final score.

Overall, Tech played two tough road games against the pre-season favorite to repeat as WCHA champions. On Friday the offense failed to get anything going, and on Saturday the Tigers' talent simply prevailed. I'm looking forward to the Winter Carnival matchup slated between these two teams here in Houghton. Maybe all it'll take is a little of the Huskies Pep Band and the Misfits to get Bachman to cough up five goals again. ;)

The U-18 kids are in town next weekend, which should be a good exhibition tune-up to help ensure we don't completely embarass ourselves by not sweeping the Seawolves out of the MacInnes the following weekend. It'll also allow time for lingering injuries to do some healing before four straight WCHA series against Anchorage, Wee-sconsin, Arrogance!!1!11, and the Landcows.

1 comment:

MeanEgirl said...

Thanks for covering this weekend, F2B&G. Great recap! Fustercluck... neat!