a Long Wait, a Coole Kind of Revenge
been said that revenge is a dish best served cold. At St.
Cloud State last weekend, revenge was served Coole.
his first college hockey start in more than 18 months, Huskies
goalie Adam Coole shut down, and nearly shut out, the Wisconsin
Badgers, turning aside all but one of Wisconsin's 29 shots
in a 3-1 win. For the junior from Duluth, Minn., the victory
was the reward for working his way back to respectability
after a disastrous start to his college hockey career.
was a star for Duluth East High School, and enrolled at
Minnesota Duluth. But his tenure with the Bulldogs started
slow and ended badly. On March 2, 2002, in a game against
Wisconsin at the Kohl Center, Coole started and lasted just
1:59, allowing three goals on four shots. Bulldogs coach
Scott Sandelin released him from the program just days later,
leaving Coole with a hockey future that was uncertain, at
getting a second chance at St. Cloud State, was Coole hungry
to avenge what the Badgers had done to him on that night
in Madison? Starving is more like it.
was all I thought about all week," said Coole after
the game. "I owed these guys after they packed my bags
in Duluth. After that, I didn't know if I'd ever step on
the ice again.
had a year and a half to think about how Wisconsin ran me
out of the net, so as I told my Dad before the game, losing
was not an option."
experienced goalies at a premium in the league, Huskies
coach Craig Dahl is delighted to have Coole on the roster,
regardless of his past struggles.
if anyone thinks that Coole can just go back to focusing
on hockey now and forget about revenge, they apparently
haven't looked at St. Cloud State's schedule. The Huskies
have a two-game series at Minnesota Duluth in just a few
AND HEARD IN THE WCHA
Red Rube – Former Badger Tom Sagissor, who
provides color commentary for Fox Sports Net North's coverage
of Wisconsin hockey, has been alternately criticized and
praised for his flamboyant on-air style. So last Saturday's
Sagissor performance, depending on whether you like him
or not, was either a new high or a new low.
Great Weekend Getaway
Duluth at Minnesota (Fri.-Sat.)
are more storylines than one could count this weekend
when the Bulldogs and Gophers face off in Minneapolis.
This is a rivalry that extends far beyond the ice,
as the coaches routinely clash over the best northern
Minnesota recruits, and many Duluthians look south
to the Twin Cities with a mixture of envy and contempt.
As for the action on the frozen surface of Mariucci
Arena, the Bulldogs are desperate for a win (off to
a 0-2-1 start) to prove that the lofty preseason predictions
for the team are justified. The Gophers are hoping
to prove that 4-0 loss to Maine two weeks ago was
a fluke, and the drive for a NCAA three-peat is on.
you’re there: The best thin-crust pie in the
Twin Cities is three blocks from Mariucci at Campus
Pizza. It's the place to go if you're looking for
a quieter post-game with a pitcher of root beer, an
outstanding pizza, and a semi-regular appearance by
the Lucia family (or the likes of Jerry York and Jeff
Sauer, depending on who's in town) on Saturday nights.
Denver coach George Gwozdecky,
for earning win #200
behind the Pioneers bench last weekend. While he has
yet to guide DU to its first Frozen Four trip since
1986, Gwoz's nine-plus seasons in the Mile High City
have included a WCHA regular season title, two WCHA
playoff titles and four trips to the NCAA playoffs.
And with the Pioneers off to a 4-0 start, more good
times might be on the way. Plus, among writers, he's
renowned as the best quote in college hockey.
Alaska Anchorage, for a great start
to the season. Yes, we're a long way from anyone booking
flights to Alaska for the playoffs, but after the
one-win disaster that was last season, winning their
tournament last weekend and sprinting to a 3-1-0 start
must feel great for the Seawolves and their fans.
the residents of Greater Grand Forks.
You've got the nicest arena in the country (possibly
in the world) and you've got the top team in the nation
(Boston College) playing your beloved Fighting Sioux
last Friday night. So how do more than 500 tickets
for a game of that magnitude go unsold? Sioux SID
Jayson Hajdu points out that the revised official
attendance of 11,153 (capacity is 11,675) is more
than 20% of the population of Grand Forks. Still,
were there that many other big events going on in
town that night?
Fox Sports Net (for the second week
in a row). CSTV was all set to air Minnesota Duluth
at Minnesota for its national game of the week on
Friday, before the folks at Fox made a stink about
owning the rights to Gopher games. So CSTV relented,
opting to show Boston College and Notre Dame instead.
Until Fox regularly covers more than three of the
league's 10 teams (Minnesota, Denver and Wisconsin),
they shouldn't try to dictate what others can do.
Seriously, is Fox thinking that more exposure for
the college game is going to hurt their ratings?
his pregame intro, Sagissor stood in front of a rabid (and
well lubricated) group of St. Cloud State fans and talked
of the rink's intimidating atmosphere. Behind him were four
Huskies fans stripped to the waist with letters spelling
"S-C-S-U" on their chests. In the middle of his
intro, Sagissor removed his own shirt, revealing a red "W"
painted on his bare chest, generating a roar of derision
from the student section.
a fine line between being a journalist and being a rube.
Sagissor has apparently chosen to paint a big red "W'
over that line.
Start in Mankato – There was good news and
bad news for Mavericks fans last weekend as Minnesota State,
Mankato was swept by Providence at the Midwest Wireless
Civic Center. The good news is that the line of Brock Becker,
Shane Joseph and David Backes was impressive, as that trio
put up three of the team's four goals on the weekend. In
the process, Joseph extended his streak of consecutive games
with a point to eight. The bad news was that Providence
scored seven goals, winning 2-1 and 5-3.
sportscaster Randall Harder of KYSM-AM noted that Backes,
one of the league's most highly-touted freshmen, and Joseph
complemented each other well. On the downside, said Harder,
it's obvious Joseph misses having Grant Stevenson on his
line and the youthful Mavs defenders struggled to get the
out of their zone at times.
get any easier for the Mavericks anytime soon, with road
trips to CHA favorite Bemidji State and defending WCHA champ
Colorado College looming on the schedule. Many predicted
that the Mavs would suffer a fall from their second-place
finish in the league last year. But unless an infusion of
consistency on offense and defense is forthcoming, the fall
may be sooner, and farther, than expected.
TO PICK UP AFTER PRACTICE
Just a few weeks into the season, Michigan Tech
junior forward Colin Murphy is getting fans, and his coach,
excited. Murphy turned in a four-goal game last Saturday
as the Huskies came from behind to beat arch-rival Northern
Michigan 7-6 in overtime. Tech
trailed 6-3 with less than five minutes to play, before
an incredible rally began. Nick Anderson's power-play goal
cut the Wildcats' lead to 6-4, then Murphy notched a natural
hat-trick (including the winner 2:58 into OT) to give Huskies'
coach Jamie Russell his first collegiate victory. Russell
credited Murphy, and the Huskies fans, for getting the win.
"When we started to rally, the building got very, very
loud," he said. "Then we were fortunate enough
to get a faceoff goal in overtime and the place went crazy.
Watching Colin is worth the price of admission. I find myself
clapping for him on the bench."
Over the summer, Minnesota state law was changed allowing
bars to stay open until 2 a.m. But the St. Cloud City Council
didn't approve the bartime change within the St. Cloud city
limits until recently, and the change did not go into effect
in St. Cloud until Oct. 24. With St. Cloud State's
hockey team hosting
Wisconsin last weekend, and the Huskies football team hosting
South Dakota for homecoming last Saturday as well, the new
bartime was apparently delayed in hopes of avoiding rioting.
St. Cloud State had homecoming riots in 1988, and with cars
burning in Minneapolis and Mankato in recent months, college
town authorities are understandably skittish.
Thoughts and prayers from all of us at INCH go out to Minnesota
sophomore forward Gino Guyer and his family. The Guyers
are mourning the tragic death of Gino's cousin, Jenni, who
died in a car accident on Sunday, Oct. 12, while retuning
from watching Gino play in the Maverick Stampede in Omaha.
Jenni, 20, was in an eastbound SUV which was struck by a
westbound car that veered out of control and crossed the
freeway median on I-80 near Stuart, Iowa. A student at Wisconsin-LaCrosse,
Jenni was a 2001 graduate of Greenway High School and had
been the school's homecoming queen.
One of the worst examples of political correctness run amok
is on display at the National Hockey Center. St.
Cloud State officials have launched a protest against
Native American nicknames in the past, urging schools like
North Dakota to rethink their teams' moniker. In the Huskies
home rink, they have a wall of fame with paintings of men
who helped build hockey in Minnesota. Among those pictured
is Sam LoPresti, who spent a year at St. Cloud Teachers
College (now SCSU) before playing 74 games for the Chicago
Blackhawks in the early 1940s. LoPresti is pictured wearing
a Blackhawks sweater from that era. But on painting, they've
replaced the Indian head logo with a depiction of a dog.
Yes, it's a husky. Some are apparently not just content
to re-write history, they want to re-paint it too.
When Colorado College visits Clarkson this
weekend for a two-game set, it will only be the seventh
and eighth all-time meetings between these long-time powers.
But that doesn't mean that there's not usually a lot on
the line when the Tigers and Golden Knights get together.
Of their six previous meetings (all of which have been won
by CC), three of them have come in the NCAA playoffs. In
1957, the Tigers beat Clarkson 5-3 in the Frozen Four semifinals,
and bested Michigan 13-6 the next day to claim the school's
second (and most recent) NCAA title.
In addition to the action on the ice at Mariucci Arena this
weekend, there will be plenty of special doings off the
ice as well. On Friday, the Gophers' 2003 NCAA Championship
banner will be raised to the rink's rafters. And on Saturday
On Saturday, Oct. 25, they will honor the legacy of former
player and coach Herb Brooks, who died in a car crash last
summer. Brooks was a Gopher player from 1956-59 and the
team's head coach from 1972-79. A special "HB"
logo will be on the arena's ice and the team will wear a
similar patch on their sweaters. Many players and staff
from Brooks' seven Minnesota teams, along
with Brooks' teammates from his playing days, have been
invited to the celebration. St. Cloud State,
where Brooks coached for one season, is also wearing a "HB"
patch on their sweaters this season.