December 26, 2007
Badger Hockey Showdown

Kohl Center • Madison, Wis.

Holiday Tournament Preview


Friday, Dec. 28
Bowling Green vs. Northeastern, 5:07 p.m.
Colgate at Wisconsin, 8:07 p.m.

Saturday, Dec. 29
Bowling Green/Northeastern vs. Colgate, 5:07 p.m.
Bowling Green/Northeastern at Wisconsin, 8:07 p.m.

(All times Eastern)

On TV: MyMadison TV will have live coverage of both Badger games during the tournament.


Clarkson's Nick Dodge had a hat trick in a 6-3 semifinal win over the host Badgers and then added a goal and an assist a 3-2 championship game victory over Lake Superior State to give the Golden Knights the 2006 title. Wisconsin blanked Providence 5-0 in the consolation game behind 26 saves from Shane Connelly.


The semifinal games feature a first look for all four teams at the respective conferences they're competing against. Northeastern has yet to face a CCHA opponent this year and Bowling Green hasn't taken on a Hockey East foe thus far. The game is also Colgate's first of the year versus WCHA opposition and Wisconsin's first of the season against an ECAC Hockey member.

Friday's semifinal between Colgate and Wisconsin is a rematch of the 1990 NCAA Championship game, which the Badgers won 7-3 at Joe Louis Arena in Detroit.

Bowling Green is participating in its fourth Badger Hockey Showdown in the tournament's 18-year history, and is tied with Northern Michigan for most appearances by a visiting team.

The Pettit Cup is the trophy awarded to the winner of the Badger Hockey Showdown. The trophy is named after Lloyd Pettit and Jane Bradley Pettit, hockey enthusiasts and philanthropists from Milwaukee.


Wisconsin junior forward Ben Street has been scoring at a consistent rate with points in five of his last six games. He shares the team lead in goals with seven and ranks second on the team in scoring with 16 points. He'll have to carry more of the load as three of Wisconsin's top-five scorers are away at World Juniors.

Colgate seniors Jesse Winchester and Tyler Burton have crafted stellar four-year careers for the Raiders and currently share the team lead in scoring with 17 points each. Winchester had just four points as a freshman but has scored 36 and 37 points in his last two seasons.

Northeastern goalie Brad Theissen gets lots of the attention, but junior forward Joe Vitale has played an important part in the Huskies' success so far. He leads the team with 14 points through 13 games and is the only NHL draft pick on the Northeastern roster, a Pittsburgh Penguins property.

Bowling Green senior forward Derek Whitmore is averaging a goal per game with 13 lamp-lighters on the season. Eight of his goals have come on the power play, and the Falcons' man-advantage units have converted at a remarkable 25.3 percent success rate this year.


Wisconsin has had a number of big wins this year but has yet to put together a winning streak of more than two games. A pair of impressive wins over St. Cloud State were followed up by a loss and tie at Minnesota State in games that the Badgers only scored one goal each night. Without stellar freshman Kyle Turris and sophomores Blake Geoffrion and Jamie McBain – all away at the World Junior Championship – Wisconsin still must be considered a prohibitive favorite in the event, especially on home ice where they are 6-2-0 this year.

Colgate comes into the weekend with some momentum, after going 4-1-1 in its last six games before a long holiday break, including a sweep of Robert Morris at Starr Rink that was capped by a 5-0 shutout.

With an 8-6-0 record and 5-5-0 mark in the CCHA, the Bowling Green Falcons have exceeded expectations thus far. They've got an outstanding power play that is ranked third nationally and four of the six defeats thus far have come against powerhouses Michigan and Notre Dame.

Northeastern is atop the Hockey East standings and carries a 6-0-2 mark in its last eight games into this weekend's event. The Huskies have a pair of wins over New Hampshire and another against Boston College during that span.

All four teams come into this tournament with legitimate hopes of hoisting the trophy on the Kohl Center ice on Saturday. We'll look for a Wisconsin-Northeastern final with the trophy going to whichever team's goalie – The Badgers' Shane Connelly or the Huskies' Brad Theissen – plays better.

— Joe Gladziszewski