Inside College Hockey Staff
a limited slate last weekend, Inside College Hockey
offers a national notebook this week. Check back next
weekend for conference-by-conference notebooks.
Great Weekend Getaways
Breaker Invitational | East Lansing, Mich.
College leads the field as this annual event pays
its first visit to Munn Ice Arena, but storylines
abound. Pat Ford makes his debut behind the bench
for Findlay. Minnesota Duluth hopes to live up to
the growing expectations that they’ll be the
surprise team in the WCHA. And the hosts feature a
skilled offensive lineup that hopes to rebound from
last year’s disappointing season.
While You’re There: Get a burger and catch
up with the pre- and post-game hockey crowd at Crunchy’s.
Extra credit for the game-worn Ron Weaver jersey on
display – he’s the father of this site’s
designer, Mike Weaver.
Stampede | Omaha, Neb.
If the allure of a new rink in Omaha isn’t
enough, this lineup certainly has some appeal. The
two-time defending champs open things up in a rematch
of the 2002 title game, while Ryan Suter makes his
debut for Wisconsin. While they might look overmatched
on paper, don’t count out the home team –
at least in the old barn, Nebraska-Omaha enjoyed one
of college hockey’s best home-ice advantages.
first installment of “Friday Night Hockey”
was a hit, with impressive production quality and
– we’ll admit bias here, since he contributes
to INCH – terrific analysis from Billy Jaffe.
Miami and St. Lawrence didn’t play the most
scintillating game, but it was entertaining nonetheless.
it be that the turning point of the 2003-04 Notre Dame hockey
season occurred during the second period of the team's exhibition
opener against Western Ontario? The thought is not as far-fetched
as one might think.
Rob Globke swatted a puck out of mid-air past the opposing
goaltender during last Friday's contest at the Joyce Athletics
and Convocation Center. However, referee Craig Lisko waved
off the goal, correctly ruling that Globke batted the puck
with a high stick.
Coach Dave Poulin
braced for Globke's reaction. After all, the team's leading
scorer last season admitted to a reporter a couple days
before the exhibition opener that calls that didn't go his
way affected his attitude and focus for the remainder of
the game, and he was working on a more consistent mindset
for the upcoming campaign.
surprise – and satisfaction – when Globke sidled
up to Lisko, quickly pled his case, put an arm around the
official acknowledging his explanation and skated to the
he reacted to that goal thing was great," said Poulin.
"And guess what? He went out and scored the next one."
faithful hope Globke can surpass the 21 goals and 36 points
he scored last season. Judging from comments he made the
day after the exhibition game – and just after he
and his teammates participated in a Down's Syndrome Buddy
Walk – the second-round pick of the Florida Panthers
in the 2002 National Hockey League Entry Draft is ready
to fulfill his vast potential.
step to fixing a problem is admitting you made a mistake,"
Globke said. "It obviously wasn't helping my game.
It's something I've needed to work on ... and I think I've
improved it. If the team does well, the personal stuff will
As one of Notre
Dame's five seniors, Globke felt he had to serve as a team
leader and display the composure and maturity that comes
with being an elder statesman. So far, he's performed swimmingly:
when asked which veteran had taken them under their wing
on and off the ice, the majority of Fighting Irish freshmen
named Globke. The praise is surprising considering the leadership
role is foreign to the West Bloomfield, Mich., product,
who's spent most of his hockey career being the young guy.
turned 21 years old," Poulin said of Globke, who was
named one of Notre Dame's assistant captains by a vote of
his teammates. "Last year was the first time he skated
against someone younger than him since he was like eight
years old ... and that's the one negative to always playing
"I was really
young as a freshman and often times I felt like I was just
here," Globke said, "so I wanted to make the freshmen
feel like they're part of the team and they're really important
to the team, which they are."
Irish will need Globke to be at his best in order to advance
deeper in the CCHA playoffs and contend for an NCAA Tournament
berth. So far, his coach likes what he sees.
... has grown immensely in his time here and I think this
summer he took the final step," Poulin said. "I
think he's going to be one of the top players in college
hockey this year."
read too much into the two games St. Francis Xavier played
against Massachusetts and UMass Lowell last weekend. As
the Comic Book Guy from The Simpsons might say, comparing
scores from the X-Men’s games in advance of this weekend’s
Hockey East opener is about as valuable as a Steve Allen
Sure, St. Francis
Xavier blew past the Minutemen, 7-2, one night before falling
to UMass Lowell, 3-2. But it was a much different UMass
lineup than the River Hawks will face – one that has
people expecting big things in Amherst this season.
were a couple of little dings that I didn’t want to
become bigger dings, and this was an easy one to let the
guys sit out,” head coach Don Cahoon said. “And
in a couple of cases it really was a coach’s decision
to get a chance to see some guys in game action. If it was
a regular-season game, these guys definitely would have
been able to play. But we thought, let’s look at someone
The result was
a lineup that looked nothing like what opponents will see
once the regular season begins. Cahoon played, for example,
Dominic Torretti, a transfer from Providence who the coach
hadn’t seen in game action for four or five years,
since junior hockey. It amounted to an almost NHL-style
approach to an exhibition game for Cahoon.
Pock sat out the exhibition game, as did the Minutemen’s
entire first line. With Matt Anderson sidelined, most likely
for the season, the center spot on that unit will be filled
by junior Tim Vitek. He’ll skate between talented
forwards Greg Mauldin and Stephen Werner against Connecticut
Thursday night and at UMass Lowell on Saturday. Vitek hasn’t
posted big numbers in his UMass career – just 6-9—15
in 64 career games – but Cahoon thinks he’ll
fit right in.
Vitek has been a good player for us,” Cahoon said.
“We brought him in as an underager – a 17-year-old
freshman – and he was only 155 pounds. We knew if
we let him play another year of juniors, one of the Michigan
schools or someone might have come in and gotten him, so
we took him a year early. He’s playing at 175 pounds
now and he’s really developed into a good player for
us. He’s quicker than Anderson, and he relies more
on his skating, where Anderson is more skilled with his
stick. He’s developing some chemistry with (Werner
and Mauldin), and we think he’ll be a good fit there.”
won’t see any major rule changes in college hockey
this season, but one of the five minor adjustments already
had an impact – before the very first game of the
year even started.
Jeff Sauer's take on the 2003-04 rule changes in this
week's edition of The
helmets must be securely fastened by a tight chinstrap,
and officials have been directed to check goaltenders’
helmets before the start of each game. Denver, however,
apparently didn’t get word of the change – and
when Adam Berkhoel’s mask was checked prior to the
drop of the very first puck at the Lefty McFadden Invitational,
it wasn’t in compliance. There was a short delay while
the Pioneers’ equipment manager tried in vain to come
up with a solution before officials decided to keep things
Four other rule
changes you may notice at a rink near you:
• A new infraction for “contact to the head,”
which officials have been told to call with zero tolerance.
• Three additional seconds for the home team to make
its line change at a stoppage in play.
• Teams must have the correct number of skaters in
a stationary position near the faceoff before the puck is
dropped. Players may not join the play late; first offense
is a warning, while the second offense is a bench minor.
• The NCAA clarified the ruling when a defensive player,
diving to poke the puck away from an opponent, trips that
player. This is a minor for tripping regardless of whether
the defensive player makes contact with the puck.
are two schools of thought in preparing a non-conference
schedule. Some coaches prefer to fatten a record and build
a team's confidence against lesser opposition. Others like
to take on the best teams available to provide a stern examination
of their team early on.
When Kevin Sneddon
took on the head coaching job at the University of Vermont,
he also inherited one of the toughest schedules in the nation.
On the first three Saturdays of the season, UVM goes up
against the best that Hockey East has to offer.
Game one of the
run was a 5-3 loss on Saturday afternoon to Boston College.
This weekend, the Catamounts visit New Hampshire, and Vermont
closes the string with Boston University's visit to Gutterson
Fieldhouse on Oct. 18. At last, there's a breather with
an exhibition game against St. Francis Xavier, followed
by a road trip to Michigan Tech. The ECAC season begins
with Harvard and Brown, likely the toughest travel partner
tandem, visiting The Gut. By then UVM will have seen so
many good teams the Cats might welcome those opponents with
and New Hampshire fans ended the college hockey season by
rioting on campuses in Minneapolis and Durham last April.
Apparently, sports fans in Mankato, Minn., decided to follow
that lead and kick off the new hockey season by overturning
cars and burning dumpsters of their own.
Police from throughout
southern Minnesota were called to a neighborhood near the
Minnesota State, Mankato campus last weekend to quell a
mob of 3,000 students who became unruly after the Mavericks'
homecoming football game. Of the dozens of students arrested,
none were student-athletes.
the aftershocks of the rioting still lingering on the MSU
campus, perhaps it's a good move for the hockey Mavericks
to get out of town. In hopes of expanding their regional
fan base, MSU's exhibition game versus St. Clair College
on Sunday afternoon will be played at the Mayo Civic Center
in Rochester, Minn. The change of venue was scheduled a
month ago, and has nothing to do with the on-campus unrest.
AT THE BOTTOM OF THE BAG
Boston College defenseman J.D. Forrest, an INCH Preseason
Second-Team All-American, was academically ineligible for
Sunday’s season-opening win over Vermont and will
not travel with the team to the Ice Breaker Invitational
in East Lansing, Mich., this weekend. The Eagles are not
sure when Forrest might be back on the ice, but it will
not be until his academic issues are resolved. A offensively
gifted blueliner who had 6-25—31 in 34 games last
season, his situation is somewhat familiar to Hockey East
fans – last year UNH’s top offensive defenseman,
Garrett Stafford, was lost for the first half of the season
for academic reasons.
Bowling Green is undergoing a uniform change this season.
According to the school's athletics Web site, the Falcons
will wear predominately orange in 2003-04. The sweaters
won't be unveiled until the team's first home game Oct.
18 vs. Notre Dame. Remember, however, that when the Denver
Broncos switched into their current duds a few years ago,
team owner Pat Bowlen claimed the new uniforms were predominately
sweater! Mind if I try to pull it over your head and
punch you in the face?"
Another sweater note comes from North Dakota, where the
Fighting Sioux sported throwbacks in the U.S. Hockey Hall
of Fame Game, a 3-2 win over Minnesota Duluth.
It didn't take long for Clarkson freshman defenseman Matt
Nickerson to catch the eye of the Golden Knights faithful
in Potsdam. He had three goals for his side of the intrasquad
Green and Gold game last weekend.
Buddy Powers, formerly the coach at Bowling Green, Rensselaer
and RIT, has stepped down from his new position at Wesleyan.
Powers, a former Boston University star, moved back to the
Bowling Green area with his family and is managing a golf
course in the area.
Cahoon, who grew up in Marblehead, Mass., watched the Red
Sox game Monday night knowing that a Sox win would mean
they would face the Yankees Thursday night – at the
same time as the Minutemen’s season opener against
Connecticut. “We knew with the Sox winning that it
was going to take away from our draw Thursday night,”
he said. “Still, I couldn’t bring myself to
root against them.”
New conference Atlantic Hockey took another step in its
development this week, adding content to its web site at
The conference’s first games take place this weekend
as Holy Cross visits Canisius for a two-game series.
Jeff Mushaluk, a sophomore defenseman at Maine, will have
an assistant captain’s “A” on his sweater
this weekend as he makes his Black Bear debut. Mushaluk
sat out last season after transferring from Lake Superior
The surprise result of the Lefty McFadden Invitational had
to be St. Lawrence's 3-1 win against host Miami on Friday
night. The Saints have junior goalie Kevin Ackley to thank.
He was terrific in the CSTV-televised contest, making 40
saves, including 19 in the third period. SLU hosts Wayne
State for a pair of games this weekend.
A variety of sources were utilized in the compilation
of this report.