Believe it or not, Gustavus Adolphus seemingly harmless 5-0 win over Concordia (Wis.) in the Gusties season opener was actually quite a significant accomplishment.
Although Gustavus Adolphus has won at least 22 games in each of the last seven seasons, the Gusties haven’t won a season opener since beating Wis.- River Falls 3-1 on Nov. 7, 2003. Yeah, i know. Shocking isn’t it?
St. Norbert made its varsity debut last weekend with a split and fellow 2010-2011 newcomer St. Scholastica opened the same way as well. The Saints won their inaugural game with a 3-0 shutout win over Augsburg, before falling the next night, 5-4 to Concordia (Minn.)
Speaking of Concordia-Moorhead, the Cobbers haven’t missed a beat since Brett Bruininks took over for Ace Gregg in the offseason as the head coach. The Cobbers (4-1-0 overall) swept Finlandia last weekend and then split with Wis. Superior on Friday and Saturday, before downing St. Scholastica on Sunday.
Playing three games in three straight days is a rarity in college hockey. However, not only did Concordia (Minn.) do is this past weekend, St. Norbert did as well and the Green Knights came away with the same 2-1 record.
Even without standout freshman defenseman Emma Agen, who is currently playing for Team Sweden at the Four Nations Cup, the Green Knights managed to beat St. Catherine, 4-1 and St. Benedict, 3-2. They did fall to Bethel though in between the two wins, 6-3.
Even with defending NCAA Division III scoring champion Kim Herring sidelined, Lake Forest is off to a 4-0 start without their offensive stud that accounted for a fourth of the Forresters goals and 53 points. The competition will pick up the next two weekends however as the Forresters travel to St. Scholastica and Wis.- River Falls for a pair of games each weekend.
In one of the more shocking results of the weekend, Oswego tied Elmira 1-1 on Saturday afternoon at the Campus Center. On paper Oswego’s recruiting class turned some heads and now the Lakers are starting to back it up on the ice. Granted, Elmira lost a ton of offense from last year’s Frozen Four squad and after this weekend can officially be labeled in a “rebuilding” year, it’s still a benchmark win for the Lakers who are in their fifth year as a program and have yet to show trends of building up to the level of their men’s program like was expected.
What’s unfortunate is that more people were waiting in a line outside the rink that started at 9:30 a.m. for the men’s game that night at 7 p.m. against Oswego’s arch-rival Plattsburgh.
Wis.- Stevens Point is off to a 4-0 start this season and is looking to wipeaway the trend of the last three seasons which has seen the traditional powerhouse go from 22 wins in 2008, to 16 in 2009, and then an all-time program worst 13 wins last season. The Pointers swept St. Thomas by scores of 4-1 and 2-1 over the weekend.
The Pointers play five more games in the first half of the season that will go a long way towards showing just how far the team has come since last season. Ann Ninnemann’s squad will play a home and home with St. Norbert two weeks from now and then meet Lake Forest on Nov. 30, which could be for first place in the NCHA.
Player of the Week : Forward, Sophie Leclerc, Norwich (Sr.)
Leclerc scored four goals and added four assist to help lead the Cadets to a sweep of Castleton State and New England College. The Barre, Vt. native scored two goals with the second being the 50th of her career in the maroon and gold, while adding three assists in an 11-1 win over Castleton State on Friday. Leclerc followed up with two goals, including the game winner and an assist in Saturday’s 5-2 win over N.E.C. She leads the country with six goals and five assists for 11 points in four games.
Rookie of the Week : Forward, Abby Taffe, Concordia (Minn.) Fr.
Taffe (Aberdeen, S.D.) tallied three goals and two assists in three games to help lead the Cobbers to a 2-1 record over the weekend. She scored the game-winning goal shorthanded in Friday’s 3-1 win over Wis.- Superior and added an assist as well. She also scored two goals and an assist in Sunday’s 5-4 over St. Scholastica. Taffe tied the game at 3 with another shorthanded goal and then put the Cobbers ahead for good with her second goal.
Goalie of the Week : Emi Williams, Oswego (Sr.)
Williams, a senior from Anchorage, Alaska, stopped 42 shots to help Oswego tie Elmira 1-1 on Saturday. This was the Lakers first point earned in five years against the ECAC West powerhouse trio of Elmira, Plattsburgh, and R.I.T.