Sunday, December 03, 2006

Sweep!


After a dominating win on Friday night, Colorado College was able to buckle down and steal game two on Saturday for the sweep over the hated University of Denver Pioneers. The sweep puts CC at 3rd in the WCHA with 14 points, and drops Denver to a tie for 4th, at 11 points. The Tigers overall record is now 10-5-1. And while CC is playing such great team hockey right now that it's hard to attribute their success to individuals, but here's some players who had particularly impressive weekends:

#1 Star : Matt Zaba - I always like to give props to the goalie because when they play solid but not spectacular, they rarely get attention. Well, this weekend Zaba was borderline spectacular. On Friday night, he consistently made big saves while the offense pounded away and finished off the Pioneers. On Saturday, he held the Tigers in the game with some huge saves when DU had all the momentum. Just a stellar all-around performance.

#2 Star : Lee Sweatt - Sweatt was not only laying guys out with big hits, but he also put the puck in the net on both nights. On Saturday, he opened the scoring for CC on the powerplay. On Friday, he solidified a 1-0 lead. He's looking sharp out there and playing physical - a real thrill to watch.

#3 Star : Chad Rau - Another big weekend for Rau, as he puts one in on Friday and then scores yet another huge goal in Magness.

Honorable mentions:

Mike Testwuide - Comes flying on Friday and puts in two goals against big-bro's team.

Denver's youngsters - Gotta give some love to Denver's younger players, who were more impressive than the scores of the games would indicate. Ruegsegger, Rhakshani, Trotter - these guys are all for real. Very impressive. Chris Butler (soph) accounted for DU's only goal on Friday, with Ruegsegger netting the assist. On Saturday, Trotter put up a goal and an assist, while two other freshmen (Ruegsegger and Seabrook) had assists. There could be some really good games between these two teams down the road if most of these guys stick around.

This was a huge weekend for CC for a number of reasons, not the least of which is that the Tigers have put themself in great position in the WCHA standings. I mentioned earlier that the Tigers are in 3rd behind St. Cloud State by one point; remember, though, that CC has two games in hand and could potentially move three points ahead of the Huskies with two wins. Thus, the Tigers have put themselves in great position in the WCHA, especially after what looked like a crippling sweep at the hands of Minnesota early in the season. Don't discount St. Cloud State though, they're on a roll of their own. They're currently on a six game win streak (four in the WCHA), and have their next six WCHA games against bottom-half teams, although they end their season with a fairly brutal stretch of league games.

The wins also put the Tigers in position to take back the apparently new and improved Gold Pan trophy. While not necessarily important in the big picture, it would be nice to see CC win back the trophy that DU has had a stranglehold on for the past few seasons.

All in all, a fantastic weekend for the Tigers and their fans. This was just good, solid, team hockey. Everyone looked sharp; players were finishing checks, forechecking effectively, crashing the net, and wearing down the opponent. If CC keeps up this type of play they should be able to win a lot of games down the road. Speaking of which, the Tigers are about to start a six game stretch at home, starting with two games against Alaska-Anchorage. The Seawolves come to town at 5-5 in the WCHA. Their most recent series was a split with Minnesota-Duluth. Before that, however, they managed an impressive series sweep of North Dakota. I'm confident that if the Tigers keep up the good team play, they can take some points in this series and further solidify their standing in the WCHA.

A couple more random thoughts:

* Great to see Andre Vlassopoulos playing again for CC - and looking solid.

* Best wishes to DU's Adrian Veideman, whose head hit the ice hard with no helmet on in Saturday's game, leading to a concussion. Also to teammate Ryan Helgason, who broke his hand in the same game.

* Ditto to Minnesota State goaltender Dan Tormey, whose hand was cut up pretty bad on Friday night by an opponent's skate. He suffered a severed tendon - ouch.

2 Comments:

At 1:38 PM, Blogger Goon said...

A few weeks back people were wondering if C.C. was a good team or not. Now they are proving to be a pretty good team. Beating Denver was huge. 6/8 points your last two weeks isn't too bad.

 
At 7:52 PM, Anonymous justafan said...

Yeah great sweep of Denver. And Colorado College is looking great, but it's going to a be tough weekend against Alaska. They are lookin' great this year, and will not be a pushover. Hopefully your boys can stand up.

 

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