Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Giant Mid-Week Roundup

Ok, so I know I'm slacking on getting up last weekend's Hockey East roundup. My bad, just haven't gotten around to it yet. So I'm going to combine that with my regular Wednesday Morning Hockey for one monster Mid Week Roundup. First up, Hockey East...

1. Maine - A pair of 4-2 wins against the hapless Northeastern Huskies last weekend pushed Maine into the top spot all alone this week. This team continues to impress with their ability to score almost at will sometimes, led by Spencer Abott and Gustav Nyquist. They play a rare Friday-Sunday home and home with BC this weekend in one of the best match-ups thus far into the season.

2. BU - A pair of ties at Merrimack isn't the worst result that could have come out of this weekend. However, for this Terrier team to separate themselves from the HE pack, a win in there somewhere would have been nice. This young team takes their talents to UNH Friday night for the first half of a home and home. This weekend will tell us a lot about the strength of this Terrier squad.

3. UNH - A win and a tie against the winless UMass - Amherst this past weekend finds UNH in the third spot this week. This team has been impressive as usual thus far this season, largely behind the talents of goaltender Matt Digirolamo. They have a home and home with the aforementioned BU this weekend.

4. BC - A win and a loss against Vermont this past weekend isn't what you would expect for the reigning National Champs. But so far this season, BC has followed the "Post Championship Hangover" path, much like BU last year. Don't get me wrong, however. BC is still an incredibly talented squad and will no doubt look to make a push going into the break. They next play this Friday against Maine in a battle of HE titans.

5. Merrimack - This team continued to prove itself this past weekend with two hard fought ties against BU, although they choked up a 3-1 lead at home on Saturday.  Let there be no doubts, however, that the Merri-hack title is well warranted - this team plays cheap and tries to draw dumb penalties after the whistle. They take their A-Rod-slapping-Arroyo ways up to UMass-Lowell this weekend.

6. Vermont - A win and a tie against BC isn't bad for this UVM squad. I'm going to be honest, I can't quite figure out this Catamounts squad just yet. But any team that beats BC is good in my book!

7. PC - Hey, two wins against the conference-less Alabama-Huntsville has to be a good morale booster for this Friars team, right? Right. I don't think these guys are really that great, but they have been playing pretty well as of late (including a win over the Mack). Army's squad looks to keep it rolling against N'eastern this weekend.

8. UMass - Lowell - They didn't play last weekend, so yeah. They still suck in case anybody is wondering.

9. UMass - Amherst - This winless Amherst team forced an impressive tie against UNH Saturday night after getting blanked 3-0 on Friday. I honestly think they are better than this, they just have fallen on some hard times up in Amherst as of late.

10. Northeastern - In both losses against Maine this past weekend, N'Eastern had leads at one point or another and then gave them away. The same thing seemed to have happened in the past weeks. This leads me to believe that these guys really just can't keep a lead/finish out a game. Tough times in Matthews thus far for the Huskies.

Now for the Wednesday Morning Hockey...

Sticking with HE, their weekly press release featured 3 Terrier players in their top performers from the weekend: Chris Connolly, Kieran Millan, and Corey Trivino.'s Hockey East blog examines BU and Merrimack's penalty kills from last weekend in their weekly column.

Former Terrier Matt Gilroy has started to turn his season around with the NY Rangers. After being a healthy scratch in a few games early in the year, and barely playing in the games he did get into, Gilroy has ended up on the scoresheet in his last two games. While both times it was only for one assist, that has to be encouraging for Gilroy to finally produce some points after struggling so far into the season. Gilroy and the Rangers take on the Bruins at Madison Square Garden tonight.

Another former Terrier, forward Brandon Yip, has been on an offensive tear of late. In his past 5 games, he has put up 3 goals and an assist for the Colorade Avalanche. The Yipper has been seeing his ice time increase as well, an encouraging sign for the second year forward. Perhaps he could share his offensive wealth with former and current teammate Kevin Shattenkirk, who had been seeing a lot of ice time for the Avs yet only has 1 assist in 6 games.

Sticking with the NHL, the voting has now opened for the 2011 All Star Game in Raleigh, NC. You can vote right here. Personally, I'm not sure if I like the new All Star format (where the captains for each team pick most of the players from a pre-made list). What was wrong with the old way?

The Boston Bruins have been without two of their key players as of late - Johnny Boychuk and David Krejci. Boychuk fractured his forearm on a slash while playing the Rangers, and Krejci suffered a concussion on November 6. Boychuk will reportedly be returning to the lineup tonight to face the very same Rangers, and Krejci just needs to pass a contact test in order to be cleared to play by the team doctors.

That's all I've got for you today. Stay tuned for QuackQuack's money in the bank picks of the week and a preview of the UNH series coming later this week.

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