Good Afternoon Student Section! When the NCAA tourney started on Friday there were four Minnesota teams in the NCAA tourney. After Saturday's play, there are no longer any Minnesota teams left in the NCAA tourney.
Like I have mentioned in the past, I love the finality of the NCAA tourney. The drama is intense. Seasons end on a bounce of the puck or an untimely penalty. Teams score goals with 0.6 left in the game. Let's take a look at what happened in the State of Hockey.
UMD vs. UMN
In the Northeast Regional semifinals, it wasn't pretty. The Minnesota-Duluth Bulldogs took the Minnesota Gophers to the woodshed beating them 4-1.
Scoring for the Bulldogs Tony Cameranesi, Justin Crandall, Willie Raskob and Carson Soucy. Gophers forward Seth Ambroz added a goal in the third period, but it wasn't enough.
UMD vs. BU
In the battle of the dogs, the Bulldogs lost a close game to the Boston University Terriers. The Bulldogs did what few teams could do this season. The Bulldogs found a way to shut down freshman phenom, Jack Eichel. Unfortunately, the Bulldogs were unable to stop his linemate Evan Rodrigues who had (2g-0a—2pts).
Stick tap to the Bulldogs, they had a very good season; they were a tough team to play against and were a lot of fun to watch. If the Bulldogs can get everyone back, they could be a Frozen Four team. The Bulldogs also beat the Gophers four out of five games this season.
RIT vs. MSU-M
The Minnesota State University Mavericks were the number one seed in Midwest Regional and came home empty handed. I know it sounds cliché, but any team can beat anyone on any given day. In the NCAA playoffs, you have to bring it every game. You can't take a shift off. In a one and done tourney anything can happen
The 2-1 loss for the Mavericks will sting for some time. In a game reminiscent of the Gophers vs. Holy Cross. The Minnesota State Mavericks entered the NCAA hockey tourney as the number one seed overall and were knocked out by the 16th seed.
Coming into Saturday's game, the Mavericks had to be licking their lips with the prospects of playing the 38th ranked team in the Pairwise Rankings. In the end, the Mavericks sputtered and failed to score goals when they needed to.
In the Mavericks defense, they lost the game on very questionable call. Check the video for yourself. Questionable call aside, the Mavericks aren't going to win many games scoring one goal.
First, I will let you judge for yourself, but in my opinion, this was a questionable call by the officials. What do you think? True to form, the NCAA has circled the wagons.
NCAA statement on RIT goal: pic.twitter.com/f909OVT7WX— Chris Dilks (@ChrisDilks) March 28, 2015
Head coach Mike Hastings on the call, "I started playing hockey at 6. I'm 49. That's a tough one to swallow."
SCSU vs. UND
The University of North Dakota ended the St. Cloud State Huskies season with a 4-1 victory.
North Dakota was the host school and hosted the regional championship 75 miles from their campus at Scheels Arena in Fargo, ND.
Three UND players Bryn Chyzyk, Colton St. Claire and Zane McIntyre played their junior hockey for the Fargo Force. The game was a homecoming for those three players. Backup goalie Cam Johnson played for the Force as well but didn't play.
Huskies forward Jonny Brodzinski suffered a lower-body injury in the semifinals against Michigan Tech. Brodzinski played in the regional final, but he wasn't the same. After the game, Brodzinski limped to and from the press conference.
"Yeah, waking up this morning it was extremely stiff but as the day went on I saw Ryan a couple times and he loosened it up for game time," Brodzinski said. "Turning right was extremely tough but warm up was a little bit easier. Overall it felt better in the second and third period."
An emotional St. Cloud State head coach Bob Motzko had this to say the game.
"Congratulations to North Dakota continuing the terrific season they've had," Motzko said. "They're an extremely hard working team. We wish them the best as they represent our league and our conference in the Frozen Four. There are two trains of thoughts right now, how proud I am of my team, and how frustrated I am that we made mistakes in a 60-minute game to get us behind like that. The game was scripted exactly how we thought, we turned it over in the first period and they missed a couple back checkers and threw one off our goalies back and we were behind the 8 ball.
"It seems like a game of ifs and buts because their goaltender was awfully strong. He made a lot of saves, but he looked good doing it. That's a little frustrating right now because I think we could have had a better fate tonight if we didn't make the critical mistakes we made. On the flip side, we put closure to our season. I'm so proud of our seniors and our leadership. Things weren't bad the first half, but we hung in there, that was leadership. We took off the second half and got right back to where our program should have been."