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Monday, September 29, 2008

Niagara Series Radio

According to Niagara University's sports website, PurpleEagles.com you can hear their home women's hockey games on their website, so hopefully this information is correct and those who want to try and listen to this weekend's season opening games can do so!

They also mention that you can hear games through yahoo sports college broadcast, but that is a pay service, but you can always go there if you want to pay a little bit.

I'll be trying out the purpleeagles.com version Saturday if it's available, and won't be home Friday to give information if there is indeed a radio broadcast.

Of course, if for some odd reason Tom Hansen travels to Niagara Falls to cover the game for DULUTH radio (I doubt it since they didn't do the much more important St. Lawrence series last season) you can go to warpradio.com to see if it's being covered by our local station instead. The link is to the 710 AM WDSM and good for games that we KNOW they're broadcasting.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

WCHA.com League Preview, UMD Preseason Favorite

CLICK the blog title to go to WCHA.COM!

League Coaches Pick Minnesota Duluth to Repeat as WCHA Women's Champion in 2008-09 as Conference Marks 10th Anniversary Season

Minnesota, Wisconsin are coaches' choice to finish second; Minnesota's Gigi Marvin is pre-season WCHA MVP; UMD's Pernilla Winberg is coaches' choice as pre-season WCHA Rookie of Year; Regular season commences weekend of Sept. 27-29 as Wisconsin hosts Quinnipiac while seven teams host exhibitions

Sept. 23, 2008

Complete Release in PDF Format

MADISON, Wis. - The University of Minnesota Duluth, which swept the national championship, the regular season championship and the WCHA FINAL FACE-OFF title in a memorable streak last season, is the pre-season choice to repeat as Western Collegiate Hockey Association champions in 2008-09, according to league coaches.

This the tenth season of WCHA women's play and league teams have won the national championship every season, including the inaugural campaign of 1999-2000. The Bulldogs kept the WCHA's national title streak alive in 2007-08 when they won their fourth national title by defeating two-time defending champion Wisconsin, 4-0, on their home ice in Duluth in the NCAA title game. The victory capped a memorable season for UMD, which went 33-4-1 and also scored an overtime victory over Wisconsin to win the title of the newly-renamed WCHA FINAL FACE-OFF, the league playoff championships.

The Bulldogs received five first-place votes and a total of 47 points in the pre-season poll (the eight league coaches couldn't vote for their own team). They edged Minnesota, which grabbed two first-place votes, and Wisconsin, which had one first place vote, and had a total of 41 points. UMD, Wisconsin and Minnesota were ranked first through third in the national USA Today/US Hockey Magazine preseason college hockey poll as well.

Ohio State rounds out the top four followed by St. Cloud State, Minnesota State, North Dakota and Bemidji State.

For the second straight season, league-member coaches have picked Minnesota senior forward Gigi Marvin as the pre-season most valuable player. Four other players - Wisconsin forwards Meghan Duggan and Erika Lawler plus Minnesota Duluth goaltender Kim Martin, a Patty Kazmaier finalist last year, and teammate Haley Irwin, the forward who led the league in scoring with 60 points last season - also received votes for preseason MVP.

Minnesota Duluth's Pernilla Winberg, a forward from Sweden who was Martin's teammate on the silver medalist Swedish Olympic team in 2006, was voted the league's pre-season rookie of the year. She received half the votes from the eight coaches. Minnesota forward Jocelyne Lamoureux, Ohio State forward Natalie Spooner, and Wisconsin forward Carolyne Prevost also each received a vote.

The opening weekend of the 2008-09 campaign will occur Friday and Saturday, Sept. 26-27, when Wisconsin hosts Quinnipiac for a pair of regular season games at the Kohl Center in Madison and four other WCHA-member teams play exhibition games. On Friday, Bemidji State hosts University of Manitoba, Ohio State hosts Wilfrid Laurier University, Minnesota entertains the University of Saskatchewan, and Minnesota State hosts the Minnesota Whitecaps. On Saturday, exhibition games have Univ. of Saskatchewan at St. Cloud State, North Dakota hosting University of Manitoba, and the U.S. Women's Select Team at Bemidji State. Then on Sunday, Sept. 29, the U.S. Women's Select Team will play at Minnesota.

The battle for the 2008-09 WCHA regular season championship will again consist of a 28-game schedule for each of the league's eight clubs, with each team playing the other seven four times - twice at home and twice on the road. The opening weekend of league competition - October 10-11 - will have defending national champion and WCHA champion Minnesota Duluth hosting Minnesota, the league runner-up last year, St. Cloud State at North Dakota, and Wisconsin at Ohio State. Minnesota State opens WCHA play at North Dakota on Oct. 17-18 and that same weekend Bemidji State opens league play at home against Wisconsin on Oct. 17. The series concludes on Oct. 18 when the Badgers and Beavers will play in the first ever U.S. Hockey Hall of Fame women's game in Eveleth, Minn.

The 2008-09 regular season will conclude the weekend of Feb. 20-22.

The conference's post-season championship tournament will open the weekend of February 27-March 1 (Friday, Saturday and Sunday) with a first round, best-of-three series format at campus sites. The No. 1 seeded team will host the No. 8 seed, the No. 2 seed will host the No. 7 seed, the No. 3 seed will host the No. 6 seed, and the No. 4 seed will host the No. 5 seed. The four first-round winners will then advance to the 2009 WCHA FINAL FACE-OFF at Ridder Arena in Minneapolis, Minn., on Saturday and Sunday, March 7-8. On Saturday, there will be two semi-final match-ups at 1:07 pm CT and 4:07 pm CT, with the championship game set for Sunday at 1:07 pm CT.

Following two weeks of WCHA playoffs, the NCAA Women's Division 1 championship tournament will commence the weekend of March 13-15 at regional sites (TBA), followed by the 2008 NCAA Women's Frozen Four, to be held March 20-22 at Boston, Mass.

Commissioner Sara Martin said the WCHA is the first women's conference to officially re-introduce the shootout to college hockey, after the option was installed recently by the rules committee. The Central Collegiate Hockey Association also recently announcd plans to use the shootout in it's men's game and Hockey East previously had installed a shootout in the mid-90s, and is among the conferences considering re-instituting it. The men's WCHA has no plans to use the shootout.

An NHL-style three-player shootout will be used to determine a winner for all WCHA games tied after regulation and five-minute overtime.

The NCAA rules and ice hockey committees have allowed conferences the ability to implement this tie-breaker protocol so that every regular-season league game will have a winner while preserving the integrity of the national rankings. Games decided by a shootout will still be considered ties for NCAA purposes so there will be no effect on NCAA records for the purposes of the Pairwise and determining the NCAA tournament field. Bonus points awarded will impact the conference standings only.

The WCHA has also approved the following point system for regular-season play; two (2) points for a win in regulation or overtime, one (1) point for each school if the game is tied at the conclusion of the five-minute overtime period and one (1) point is awarded to the team who wins the shootout. Overtime will continue to be played similar to regulation time with five skaters for each team (penalties excepted).

Team Photos, etc

In updating and re-formatting the layout of this blog, I now have room and the ability to post pictures below the blog entry. Scroll down to the bottom of the page below an entry and one in a while I'll add a new picture there. Right now the small picture is the team receiving their National Championship t-shirts and hats after the game, and the large picture below is obviously, the team saluting the DECC crowd after their Championship win.

Those who've been to this blog multiple times will recognize it as a full version of the cropped photo I previously had in the blog's title bar. THIS full photo is a much better representation of the team. If you have a photo you'd like to submit, use the link above to send it.

Layout Changes

I'm making a few layout changes to this blog to hopefully improve some of the look of it. There won't be any down time and the only thing people may notice is maybe a color change here or there, and three columns instead of two as before.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Season Preview from Umdbulldogs.com

Click the blog title to go view the page!

The University of Minnesota Duluth women's hockey team and 2008 NCAA champions will take to the ice for the Bulldogs first practice of the 2008-2009 season this Monday, September 22 on the UMD campus. UMD, which earned its fourth NCAA title in program history this past March, will no doubt draw the eyes of the rest of the league when they get set to begin their title defense on October 3 in Niagara Falls, New York.


-- The Bulldogs graduated just one player (forward Karine Demeule 16g, 5a) from their 2007-2008 NCAA championship squad, returning 18 players who now own championship rings.

-- Junior goaltender and All-American Kim Martin, who was a top-three Kazmaier finalist as a sophomore, set a single-season UMD records for most wins (31), saves (843) and a save percentage of (.943). Martin is just 11 wins shy of overtaking the Bulldog career goaltender wins record, which is currently held by Riitta Schaublin, who picked up 52 over her four-year career.

-- Sophomore forwards Haley Irwin (the reigning WCHA Scoring Champion in her debut season), and Laura Fridfinnson ended the 2007-08 season on a 16-game scoring streak that started on Jan. 19, 2008. The Bulldogs were 15-1 over that span.

-- Head coach Shannon Miller is the fourth winningest coach all-time in the NCAA after having amassed a 234-61-25 record in nine seasons. Miller has won more NCAA titles (four), holds more NCAA Frozen Four wins (nine), has made more NCAA tournament appearances (seven) and has won more NCAA tournament games (11) than any other head coach in women’s hockey history.

-- Senior blueliner Myriam Trepanier, who was ranked sixth in the NCAA in scoring a season ago and recorded the highest output of a defenseman (31 points) in five years for the Bulldogs, is currently sitting in sixth place all-time among UMD defenseman with 52 career points. She is just 10 points back of cracking the top-five, and 25 from breaking into the top three.

-- Sophomore Haley Irwin, who exploded to opponents nets as a rookie by racking up 60 points in 37 games played, is only 30 points out of a top-ten slot on the ladder of UMD’s career leaders for points.

-- The Bulldogs finished the season by winning 25 of their last 26 games, and will enter the 2008-2009 season on a 10-game winning streak.

-- UMD will showcase five players who played in the 2006 Winter Olympic Games, including three (Kim Martin, Pernilla Winberg and Jenni Asserholt) that earned silver medals with Team Sweden.

-- The Bulldogs will host the University of Minnesota at the DECC for their opening home series of the current season. While UMD will unveil its fourth championship banner Oct. 10th in front of the Gophers, it was Minnesota that handed the Bulldogs three of their four losses last year, all by two goals or more.

-- After finishing the year as the NCAA’s highest scoring team last season, averaging an impressive 4.26 tallies a contest, the Bulldogs will return 130 of their 166 goals from 2007-2008. The output of 166 goals was the fourth best recorded by a UMD team in program history.

-- UMD was an assertive 20-2-1 (.910) last season in the comfortable confines of the DECC, and loved Saturday nights, posting a 19-1-1 record (.950).

-- The Bulldogs have won their last four contests that have gone into overtime dating back to March 9, 2007, including both outings during the 2007-2008 season.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Roster Posted on UMDBulldogs.com

As with last season's roster, I condensed the umdbulldogs.com one to fit into the blogger space. Click the blog title to read more..

1 Ellison, Johanna G 5-8 Sr Cloquet, MN
3 Larocque, Jocelyne D 5-6 So Ste Anne, Manitoba
9 Mattila, Tawni F 5-6 Sr Duluth, MN
11 Ambroz, Kacy F 5'7 Fr New Prague, MN
12 Irwin, Haley F 5-7 So Thunder Bay, ONT
13 Gray, Tara D 5-10 So Toronto, ONT
14 Guzzo, Libby F 5-7 So Silver Bay, MN
15 Olson, Erin F 5-9 Sr Elk River, MN
19 Fridfinnson, Laura F 5-8 So Arborg, Manitoba
20 Shelafoe, Torri F 5'3 Fr Forest Lake, MN
21 O'Toole, Sara F 5-5 Sr Burton, NB
22 Murray, Sarah D 5-3 Jr Faribault, MN
23 Tuominen, Saara F 5-6 Jr Ylojarvi, FINLAND
24 Meyer, Amie G 5-8 Sr Deerwood, MN
26 Pelttari, Heidi D 5-5 Jr Tampere, FINLAND
29 Fisher, Justine F 5'4 Fr Littleton, CO
30 Martin, Kim G 5-5 Jr Stockholm, SWEDEN
31 Steck, Lana G 5'6 Fr Winnipeg, Manitoba
47 Blais, Emmanuelle F 5-4 Jr Lasalle, QUE
51 Winberg, Pernilla F 5'5 Fr Malmo, Sweden
72 Holmlov, Elin F 5-9 Jr Knivsta, SWEDEN
81 Trepanier, Myriam D 5-8 Sr St-Michel-de-Bellechasse, QUE
84 Asserholt, Jenni D 5'8 Fr Orebro, Sweden
88 Rasmussen, Jaime D 5-8 Jr Garden Grove, CA