WCHA Final Five Notebook

Anchorage, Minnesota?

Alaska may be home for the Seawolves, but since playing Minnesota State on March 3 and 4, Anchorage has resided in Minnesota.

“People don’t really understand what we have to go though,” coach Dave Shyiak said. “Being from such a remote area, almost a different planet, with all the miles we travel to make things work, it’s very demanding on these kids.”

After sweeping both Minnesota State and Minnesota in back-to-back weekends, the Seawolves probably made a much-needed trip to Mall of America for some new clothes this past week.

Anchorage lost to Colorado College, 4-2, on Thursday night, ending their Minnesota swing. But what would have happened if they managed to take down the Final Five and extend their season?

“Had we won this thing, we probably would have had to stay out [in Minnesota] again,” Shyiak said with a chuckle.  “Our kids re resilient, they get used to it, and they take pride in being in the WCHA.”

WCHA’s Hobey Hatty

The WCHA prides itself on being one of the deepest, most talented conferences in college hockey. With Thursday’s announcement of the finalists for the Hobey Baker award, their beliefs were again reinforced.

Three of the conference’s best players, Matt Frattin (North Dakota), Jack Connolly (Minnesota-Duluth) and Justin Schultz (Wisconsin), were named to the prestigious list.

Wisconsin’s Blake Geoffrion was the recipient of last year’s award, and the WCHA has been home to seven of the last nine Hobey Baker winners.

Silver coating for Bulldogs

Even after UMD’s 3-2 overtime loss to Bemidji State on Thursday, the Bulldogs were optimistic about their future.

“We have to look at it as a blessing in disguise,” Minnesota-Duluth captain Mike Montgomery said after the game. “We’ll refocus and get ready for a four-game NCAA run.”

UMD will learn its destination and opponent when the NCAA bracket is released on Sunday.

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