Saturday, December 8, 2012

Mavericks 3, Seawolves 0

Pat Christman/The Free Press
Freddy's three thoughts of the game:

1. Six in a row? Make it three: The winning streak is six games now, one shy of the MSU's last long one, a seven-game stretch in 2007-08. What's impressive about the streak, currently the third-longest unbeaten streak in the country, is that it's three series sweeps in a row. Not any easy task, especially in the WCHA. Anchorage had not been swept in a conference series yet this season, taking at least one point from the likes of Minnesota, North Dakota and St. Cloud State. Coach Mike Hastings put it in some perspective afterwards, pointing out that his team is 3-2 in series sweeps this season.

2. Willy, Willy good: Rookie goalie Stephon Williams recorded his second shutout in four games, stopping 15 shots on Saturday. He has allowed just two goals the last two weekends and six throughout the winning streak. Williams now leads the WCHA (overall games) in goals-against average at 1.61 and is third in save percentage at .932. The Mavericks' dominant puck possession and improved defense made it fairly easy for the goalie on Saturday, but he still made a couple of timely saves when he needed to. And that was key with the way the Seawolves' Chris Kamal was playing.

3. Everyone's playing: Hastings pointed out that his team is getting contributions from all over the line chart and not just offensively. Freshman defenseman Nick Buchanan played his best game of the season, Hastings said, and rookie forward Brett Knowles showed solid two-way play throughout the weekend. Of course, the big guns contributed, too, as Eriah Hayes scored his team-leading 10th goal of the season. Chase Grant and Zach Lehrke (power play) had the other goals.

Deep thought: Tough series coming up to close the first half of the conference season at Nebraska Omaha. The Mavs are tied for third place in the WCHA standings right now, and they'd love to be hanging among the top teams at the break.

Read The Free Press game story here.

Around the WCHA: Bemidji State 2, Minnesota Duluth 1 ... North Dakota 6, Denver 3 ... Michigan Tech 3, Wisconsin 3 (OT) ... St. Cloud State 2, Nebraska Omaha 1 ... Minnesota 4, Colorado College 4 (OT)


hockeyfan said...

Its all about our defenseman and team defense. While they are never going to get the credit ( unless they happen to get points)its the defensive play of our D that is really winning these games. They are limiting shots and creating turnovers and moving the puck up quickly to our forwards. We are spending very little time in our end. Next weekend is obviously really important, the two teams just behind us Omaha and N.D. have two WCHA games in hand. We need to at least split or while we are playing in the tournament against non conference teams we could find ourselves back in fourth or fifth.

hockeyfan said...

Finally ranked 20th gang. Still don't know how you put teams like union, niagra etc. ahead of us. They play noone that is the quality of wcha teams. But ranked is ranked. Way to go Mavs!