Thursday, August 28, 2008

WCHA women's league adds shootout

While the WCHA men's team will continue to have ties this season, its women's counterpart is going to implement the shootout to break ties after overtime, the league announced Thursday. Like the CCHA announced it was going to do earlier this month and like the National Hockey League adopted a few years ago, the WCHA women's league will put in a three-player shootout for all of its regular-season conference games when its games are still tied after overtime.

While the games will still be considered ties by the NCAA tournament selection committee, shootout wins and losses will count in the conference standings.; Teams will get two points for and one point for a shootout loss.

In a press release, the WCHA reiterated that it has "no plans at this time to use the shootout in the men's league."

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

A bunch of bull

Got a call from the fellows in the Minnesota State sports information office telling me to expect a big announcement regarding MSU hockey. What could it be, I thought, scrambling around. Well, things must be a little quiet around campus, as they were informing everybody that The Hockey News picked the Mavericks' purple bull logo as the third best logo in the WCHA.

The Mavericks lost out to Minnesota and Alaska-Anchorage and finished ahead of (in order): North Dakota, Wisconsin, St. Cloud State, Denver, Michigan Tech, Minnesota Duluth and Colorado College.

That got me thinking: What are the best logos in the league? What are the best uniforms? What do you think? Post a comment below and let PucKato know what you think.

As for the logos, here are my thoughts:

1. Alaska-Anchorage: One of the most unique in all of sports and when it stands alone on a jersey (without words), it really pops out.

2. Minnesota: The 'M' is classic and iconic.

3. St. Cloud State: Tweaking a legendary logo like the Montreal Canadiens' shouldn't work but this works great.

4. Minnesota State: After going through several logo changes in their short Division I tenure, the Mavericks finally found a winner. It looks great on the new uniforms, too.

5. North Dakota: I'll leave the politics out of this one. It's a good logo, but it's too detailed for a uniform front, I think. I liked the Sioux's Chicago Blackhawks-style icon the best.

6. Colorado College: It's a unique logo for a not-so-unique nickname. I like how it fits into the shape of a shield or coat-of-arms.

7. Minnesota-Duluth: As THN said, it breaks no new ground, but I think it looks sharp on the jersey, especially (like Alaska-Anchorage) when it stands alone. UMD needs to keep the words off the jersey front.

8. Michigan Tech: Another team that likes to put words on its logo. Take them off and you have a nice logo, although I think the dog is a little boring and the movement stripes are a little dated.

9. Wisconsin: The 'W' is nice, but the hockey team doesn't really use it. It might look good on a hockey sweater, but the Badgers can't get rid of their classic jerseys with the diagonal 'WISCONSIN.' Best uni in the league, I think.

10. Denver: Is that an eagle or a ninja flying star? If it's an eagle, where is it going and what is it doing? I believe Denver actually dropped the goofy icon last year and went back to the 'DU' logo, which is pretty boring.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

And we're back

OK, so PucKato's taken some time away from the blog. But things are starting to heat up as students return to school and captains practices get underway.

Check out Inside College Hockey's featurette on Minnesota State's Kael Mouillerat that popped today as part of INCH's annual A to Z summer feature that leads us into the season. Mouillierat, a junior, had 11 goals and 11 assists last season.

In today's Free Press, I wrote about the CCHA's decision to add a shootout to replace ties in regular-season play. Although the games will count as ties for national-tournament implications, they will be shootout wins and losses in the conference standings. Should the WCHA or all of college hockey add this? It seems to have worked for the NHL. What say you, PucKato faithful?

From earlier this month, former MSU Reporter hockey guy and current sports editor for the Twin Cities' Press Publications Dan Myers sat down with MSU 2009 recruit Tyler Pitlick, a senior at Centennial High, to discuss his future with the Mavericks and his chance to play for the U.S. Under-18 national team. The team played in an international tournament in the Czech Republic and Slovakia last week. Pitlick scored two goals and one assist as the U.S. went 1-1 in exhibition play and 1-3 in the tournament.

In other news, former MSU goalie and graduate assistant Chris Clark has left Mankato to be the goaltenders coach for the Wenatchee (Wash.) Wild, the new team in the North American (Junior A) Hockey League. He joins his old teammate Ryan McKelvie, who is the Wild's associate coach. ... Looking around the WCHA ... It's come to this on the recruiting trail: Wisconsin got a commitment from a 14-year-old!