Congratulations to Trinity coach John Dunham, who reached the 400 win mark with the Bantams’ 7-2 win over Southern Maine on Friday night. Now in his 31st season at Trinity, Dunham has through Saturday night a record of 401-279-25, and has had only a handful of losing seasons in his tenure.
It’s been an exciting time at Trinity over the last few years. The team has made the NESCAC finals the last three seasons, beating Middlebury in 2003 and going to the NCAAs. Goalie Doug Kiselius was named an All-American in that 2003 campaign and should contend for that honor again this season.
The Bantams also have a new arena to look forward to. When I talked to John Dunham in 2003 before Trinity headed off to Norwich’s Kreitzberg Arena for the NCAA quarterfinal game, he said that people from Trinity had visited Kreitzberg several times to get ideas for the new facility. On Nov. 6, ground was broken for the Community Sports Complex, which will serve Hartford, Conn., and will be the home of the men’s and women’s hockey teams.
Dunham is one of three active Division III coaches to reach 400 wins; Norwich’s Mike McShane and Middlebury’s Bill Beaney are the other two, although many of McShane’s came at D-I St. Lawrence and Providence.
Two other coaches are close to the 400 mark and will eclipse it pretty soon. UMass-Dartmouth’s John Rolli has 398 wins through last weekend, and Bill O’Neill at Salem State is at 394.
We’ll have to wait a couple of seasons for the next to hit that milestone. The closest are Plattsburgh’s Bob Emery at 354, Fitchburg State’s Dean Fuller at 353, and Bowdoin’s Terry Meagher at 344.
Bethel is off to a nice 4-2 start. Peter Aus‘ Royals pulled off a big upset on Friday by beating Wisconsin-River Falls 2-1 at the W. H. Hunt Arena, and downed Wisconsin-Stout, 5-3, on Saturday. The Falcons’ first loss should jumble things a bit in this week’s USCHO.com D-III poll.
The MIAC in general is holding its own much better against the NCHA in this year’s schedule. While so far this season, the NCHA is 28-13-7 against the MIAC, last year the margin was 41-8-6, including the postseason.
If you’d like to see how your favorite conference ranks against the other leagues, you can find a comparison of inter-conference play in the D-III stats section, by clicking on the Stats link at the top of the D-III page, and then selecting Inter-Conference Records from the menu. Or you can follow this link directly. NESCAC vs. ECAC East results are included, even though those are league games.
There weren’t too many surprises in the ECAC East and NESCAC as they got underway last weekend, but New England College’s two losses, especially the thumping at the hands of Bowdoin had to be a disappointment. St. Anselm came out of the blocks quickly after the upset loss to St. Mike’s in last year’s Northeast-10 championship game, with a win against Colby and a tie with Bowdoin.
It’s the first year in a conference for two young programs, Finlandia and Castleton State. At 2-2-0 in the MCHA, the Lions have shown themselves to be competitive, having split with Lawrence and MSOE.
It’s going to be a bit tougher for the Spartans in the ECAC East, with regular season games against their own conference and the NESCAC, the two leagues that have produced all but two of the last 10 national champions. Castleton State got pounded 9-1 and 15-0 against Middlebury and Williams, and were outshot by a whopping 140 to 25.
Seven goaltenders gained six shutouts last weekend.
On Friday, Norwich’s Mike Boudreau picked up this third in as many seasons with an 8-0 blanking of Tufts on Friday. Adam Hanna, who had five shutouts last season, made 29 saves in St. John’s 11-0 drubbing of Northland. And freshman Paul Reimer of Manhattanville got his first goose egg in a 5-0 win over Buffalo State.
On Saturday, Williams goalies Charles Bellows and Brad Shirley split for the win over Castleton State. Hamilton’s Gabe Tash got his third career shutout against Mass.-Boston in a 6-0 win. Marian sophomore Kyle Grabowski made 31 saves for his first collegiate shutout against Minnesota-Crookston. And Utica’s Adam Dekker needed only 12 stops to pick up the first shutout of his rookie year in the Pioneers’ 5-0 blanking of Johnson & Wales.
Since I’m never opposed to introducing new topics as fodder for pointless Fan Forum discussions, I just wanted to mention that USCHO.com’s Division III PairWise Rankings are up and running for this season. Since there have been so few games played so far, the numbers are mostly meaningless, but they are there to look at by clicking here and selecting them from the menu on the left.
Our PWR has been revised each year to follow the NCAA’s selection criteria. Since they aren’t springing anything new on us this year, we’re able to run them earlier.
Once they start to be more meaningful — around early to mid-January — we’ll have an article about how they are created and what they mean.
Our regular Thursday columnists have this week off. Have a Happy Thanksgiving, and if you’re headed to a tournament, enjoy the hockey.