Weekend Preview: North Dakota vs. Vermont

This weekend, the University of North Dakota hockey team travels to Burlington, Vermont, to play the Vermont Catamounts in a non-Conference tilt. Last weekend, UND tied and beat the Bemidji State University Beavers in a home-and-home series. UND is 2-0-2 in non-conference play.

Serious History

All-time, UND is 3-0-1 against the Catamounts. UND is 1-0-1 against the Catamounts in Grand Forks. This will be the first time UND plays the Catamounts in Burlington.

North Dakota (2-0-2, 0-0-0 NCHC) vs. Vermont (1-2-0, 0-0-0 Hockey East)
Date: Oct. 23-24, 2015
Time: 6:05 p.m. CT, both days
Location: Gutterson Fieldhouse (4,007) • Burlington, Vt.
Radio: 96.1 The Fox, IHeart Radio
Web: nsnsports.net
Live Stats: Sidearmstats.com

Tale of the Tape

UND Offense: 15, 3.75 GPG
UND Defense: 9 G/GM
UND Scoring Margin: 9, 1.50
UND Power Play: 14, (4/18, 22.2%)
UND Penalty Kill: 49, (5/14, 64.3%)
UND Penalty Minutes: 24, 10.8 PIM/G
USCHO Ranking: 1
UND Official Game Notes
Vermont Offense: 35, 2.33 GPG
Vermont Defense: 21 2.33 G/GM
Vermont Scoring Margin: 28, 0
Vermont Power Play: 22, (2/11, 18.2)
Vermont Penalty Kill: 15, (12/13, 92.3%)
Vermont Penalty Minutes: 42, 8.7 PM/G
USCHO Ranking: Received votes
Vermont Official Web Page
(s/t College Hockey Stats Net)

North Dakota: Forwards: Drake Caggiula (1g-5a—6pts), Bryn Chyzyk (3g-1a—4pts), Johnny Simonson (1g-2a—3pts), Luke Johnson (1g-2a—3pts), Austin Poganski (2g-1a—3pts) Brock Boeser (3g-0a—3pts), Nick Schmaltz (0g-3a—3pts). Defense: Troy Stecher (1g-4a—5pts), Tucker Pooman (0g-2a—2pts), Hayden Shaw (0g-1a—1pts), Keaton Thompson (1g-0a—1pts). Goaltenders: Cam Johnson (1-0-1, 1.82 GAA, .907 SV%), Matt Hrynkiw (1-0-1, 2.82 GAA, .879 Sv%).

UND Injuries: Goalies: Matej Tomek, Cam Johnson, Colten St. Clair, Shane Gersich (illness), Joel Janatuienen.

Vermont: Forwards:Mario Puskarich (3g-1a—4pts), Liam Couglin (0g-2a—2pts), Tom Forgione (1g-1a—2pts). Defense: Rob Hamilton (0g-2a—2pts), lexx Privitera (0g-2-a—2pts). Goalie: Mike Santaquida (1-2-0, 2.03 GAA, .917 SV%).

Series Prediction

Early in the season, UND has suffered some untimely bad karma but  have been able to weather the storm. Due to a lower-body injury, sophomore goalie Cam Johnson is out, UND enters the weekend with Matt Hrynkiw as the starting goaltender. This weekend, Johnson didn’t make the trip to Vermont. Three years ago, who would have ever thought that Hrynkiw would be the starter?

While UND has suffered a rash of injuries, early in the season, no one on the UND bench is making excuses. Nor should they. UND will not be using injuries as an excuse when it takes the ice against the Catamounts. Injuries aside, UND has more than enough firepower to get the job done. I also think that this early season adversity will make them better in the end.

In having a conversation with a member of the college hockey media, he made the following comments, “UND will be fine, look at your lineup and who’s still available. UND’s lineup is still better than most college hockey teams.”

I think there’s a lot of truth to his comments. Looking at last Saturday’s lineup sheet, UND still had something like 10 NHL draft picks in their lineup. I don’t think anyone is going to feel sorry for UND.

With these things in mind, I think the series will shake out like this. UND 5 – UVM 5 and  UND 5- UVM 2.

College Hockey Links

Matt Hrynkiw Takes over in Net [The Hockey Writers]

UND Woman’s Hockey: Mowat and Amsley-Benzie Conduct Clinic [The Hockey Writers]

Friday Gameday: On the Road Again [Daddy Dump and Chase]

Four games into the season, Miami still figuring out its roles [USCHO.COM]

Matthew and Candace with their weekly predictions: NCHC picks: Oct. 23 [USCHO.COM]

Grand Forks Herald:Get to know UND defenseman Gage Ausmus [Grand Forks Herald]

UND MEN’S HOCKEY: UND to face off against Stephane’s younger brother, Yvan [Grand Forks Herald]

Garrett Cecere Leaves Colorado College [SBN College Hockey]