Denver coach George Gwozdecky, who stuck religiously with his goaltender rotation throughout the season and into the NCAA tournament, has decided to start freshman Peter Mannino in Thursday’s semifinal game against Colorado College.
Meanwhile, sophomore defenseman J.D. Corbin broke his collarbone in Wednesday’s practice and will miss the Frozen Four. Corbin played every game this season previously, scoring one goal and 19 points.
Glenn Fisher, a sophomore, has been the usual starter for the first game of a weekend, with Mannino typically playing the second game.
“Our goaltending rotation has been very effective and very successful this year for us, and I know that I’ve talked a lot about … why try to fix something that’s not broken,” Gwozdecky said. “I think Glenn Fisher and Peter Mannino have done a terrific job in developing — adding to their confidence every game, giving us a chance to win every game.
“Yet it’s very apparent when you get at this point in the season, you really have to analyze your opponent and the good things that you’ve done against your potent, try to minimize the things that perhaps you’ve tried that haven’t been very successful. Peter Mannino is 3 and 0 against Colorado College. He’s played against them all three games. He’s played on the North American style ice
Mannino is 16-4-1 with a 2.25 goals against average and .922 save percentage. Fisher is 14-5-1 with a 2.84 GAA and .889 save percentage.
“You know, it’s — this is not a slam dunk,” Gwozdecky said. “We had extra time, obviously, with the extra weekend off to really hash this out and we talked with — amongst ourselves the staff, but also, amongst a number of people who we asked for their thoughts and who we rely on, and it wasn’t an easy decision. But when we did make the decision and when we did sit down with Glenn and Peter, both of them understood. There was not … any concern from either one of them.”