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Cats and Dogs

20 February 2017

tUMD 2, SCSU 1/tUMD 4, SCSU 1
tUMD 2, CC 1/tUMD 2, CC 2 (SOW)

Congratulations to tUMD women on their big sweep this weekend! I’m very pleased. St. Cloud made it tough at times, but the women came through. Unfortunately, Wisconsin did not come through, so tUMD finishes 3rd in the WCHA, and will play SCSU again this weekend. By “weekend,” I mean Thursday, Friday, and hopefully not Sunday. I suppose this is not really that big of a tragedy, as 2nd place would mean playing Buttmidji AGAIN. No thank you. I don’t really like being alternatively bored and annoyed by hockey.

After the game, the team honored their 6 seniors: Crossman, Lindh (junior in eligibility but graduating), Stalder, Brykaliuk, McGovern, and Morin. As Fleisch listed off each player’s accomplishments, the Aaaahj turned to me and said “That’s a lot of talent leaving.” It is. It’s a lot of talent that could have left two years ago, but every single one of them chose to return, and to lead, and to pull others up along the way. Five of the six players scored this weekend – though they still have at least 3 (? have they clinched home ice for the NCAAs? Have they even clinched a spot in the NCAAs? Run some scenarios on BC Interruption’s PWR What-if Calculator and see for yourself.) more games to score in front of the home crowd. (Well, I won’t be there Thursday or Friday, as I will be working. As hard as I am working right now, even.)

So don’t go yet, ladies. Don’t stop til you’ve conquered St. Louis. Do not go gentle into that good off-season. Rage, rage, against single elimination tournaments.

The men, on the other hand, seemed to be playing Penalty Bingo. If you had tripping – hooking – free space – slashing – contact to the head, please come to section 101 to claim your prize. Killing penalties at altitude on Olympic ice is always a good idea. Killing a major penalty in 3×3 4×3 OT at altitude on Olympic ice is freaking genius. Look, tUMD’s PK is Not That Great (although holy crap, in-conference there are some DISASTROUS PK stats for our colleagues), so this was a nice opportunity for them to improve, but like… why. tUMD’s greatest strength is its depth. It’s pretty crappy to get a goal from your 4th line on Friday night and then keep them off the ice while you’re killing penalties (without a top PKer, Sammy Squirrel, due to a case of too many centers, not enough lines) the whole freaking night on Saturday.

I’m not really that mad about it, despite taking 45 minutes to write that paragraph and having it ooze sarcasm like sap from a maple tree in spring. This team is still a great team. They struggled against CC, yes, which is weird, but they still are having a fantastic season, and they sold out hard in OT during that extended and insane PK. Maybe I am going soft in my old age, or maybe participating in a sport myself instead of just spectating is changing my perspective, or maybe with all the terrible garbage happening in this country, a loss by a sports team doesn’t seem quite so dire.

The men are home for a Thursday-Friday series against Miami, who sucks, and who we have not played yet. This is very odd. I suggest sweeping.

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