Archive for NCAA – Alaska/Fairbanks

Alaska / Fairbanks 4 – Penn State 3


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Two rapid-fire goals scored just twenty-seven seconds apart inside the last six minutes of regulation play by a third-line right wing propelled the # 19 ranked Alaska – Fairbanks Nanooks to a come-from-behind 4-3 victory over the luckless Penn State Nittany Lions in the well-played finale of the 2014 Brice Alaska Goal Rush Tournament.

It was, in fact, the second consecutive time in a row at the Carlson Center in Fairbanks that the Nittany Lions conceded two unanswered goals in the last six minutes of a game and simultaneously surrendered victory in the process. Indeed, if ice hockey games were only 54 minutes long, then Penn State would have joyfully carted off the very first tournament trophy ever won in school history by now having defeated both the Alaska – Anchorage Seawolves and the Alaska – Fairbanks Nanooks back-to-back. But, unfortunately for third-year head coach Guy Gadowsky‘s charges, that is simply not the case.

Penn State can be commended for twice falling behind but quickly responding with with equalizing goals on both occasions. Nittany Lions center Eric Scheid, the 22-year-old redshirt junior from Blaine, Minnesota, who scored six goals for the Alaska – Anchorage Seawolves during the 2011/12 NCAA campaign, did well to react to a rebound in front after Nanooks senior goalie Sean Cahill could not control a big blast from visiting defenseman Connor Varley. The ever-opportunistic Scheid, Penn State’s leading marksman last term with eleven strikes, shot the puck through the five-hole of Cahill, the 24-year-old Canadian legionnaire from Calgary, Alberta, who was making his first appearance for Alaska – Fairbanks this season, and promptly celebrated his second goal of this new 2014/15 NCAA season.

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Penn State center Taylor Holstrom (28), the experienced senior from Yorba Linda, California, who had collected two goals and six points in the Nittany Lions’ first three games of this new 2014/15 NCAA season, was conspicuously absent from head coach Guy Gadowsky’s lineup versus the Alaska – Fairbanks Nanooks on Saturday night … Holstrom, who currently counts 19 goals and 40 points in 63 career NCAA games for Penn State, had two assists on Friday but also suffered an upper body injury against the Alaska – Fairbanks Seawolves.
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Varley scored his first goal for Penn State in almost 22 full months with another long-range drive that somehow managed to negotiate its way through heavy traffic … previously, the last goal that the 22-year-old homegrown junior from Lansdale had notched on behalf of the Nittany Lions had come against the University of Connecticut Huskies back on January 4th in 2013.

Penn State also did very well to capitalize on a five-minute major penalty and grab the lead a little past the halfway point of the contest when Max Gardiner, the 22-year-old redshirt senior from Deephaven, Minnesota, who was the third round choice (# 74 overall) of the St. Louis Blues at the 2010 National Hockey League Draft, scored on the power play. After finishing as the Nittany Lions’ third-leading scorer with 22 points (three goals) in 27 NCAA games two seasons ago, the former University of Minnesota Golden Gophers right wing went goalless in 22 appearances for Penn State last term. Prior to his strike against the Nanooks on Saturday night, Gardiner’s last collegiate goal had arrived at the expense of the University of Alabama – Hunstville Chargers on February 8th, 2013.

And so it was Alaska – Fairbanks freshman right wing Austin Vieth who became the big hero of the 2014 Brice Alaska Goal Rush by scoring his first two collegiate goals very late in the third period against Penn State in the tournament finale at the Carlson Center. The 20-year-old out of Marinette, Wisconsin, also added an assist on the Nanooks’ first goal of the evening, as well, and ended up walking off with the award for Most Valuable Player of the entire four-game tournament. Some mention must be made, then, of the netminder Cahill, who came up with 40 saves against the Nittany Lions.

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October 18, 2014
Carlson Center – Fairbanks, Alaska
Attendance : 3,584

ALASKA / FAIRBANKS 4 – PENN STATE 3

04:53 … UAF – Munson (B. Morley, Vieth)
05:26 … PSU – Scheid (Varley, Robinson)
24:17 … UAF – Huysmans (T. Morley, Perry)
25:25 … PSU – Varley (Loik, Brooks)
32:09 … PSU – Gardiner (Williamson, Juha) – ppg
54:03 … UAF – Vieth (Atkinson, Krieger)
54:30 … UAF – Vieth (T. Morley)

shots-on-goal : PSU 43 (10 + 15 + 18) – UAF 33 (12 + 11 + 10)

penalty minutes : UAF 9 – PSU 4

power plays : PSU 1/4 – UAF 0/2

ALASKA – FAIRBANKS : Cahill – Froese, Parayko ; Atkinson, Kaiser ; Tateson, Campbell – Perry, T. Morley, Huysmans ; Sparrow, Krieger, Basara ; B. Morley, Munson, Vieth ; Erickson, Hochhausen, Youngmun

PENN STATE : Skoff – Koudys, Varley ; Jensen, Juha ; Williamson, Autio – Goodwin, Conway, Bailey ; Richard, Scheid, Robinson ; Loik, Glen, Brooks ; Olczyk, Gardiner, DeRosa

Note — Nanooks defenseman Colton Parayko (2012) and Nittany Lions forward Max Gardiner (2010) are both third round NHL Draft picks of the St. Louis Blues

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Penn State Nittany Lions netminder Matthew Skoff was certainly a sympathy selection as far as his place on the All-Tournament Team for the 2014 Brice Alaska Goal Rush is concerned. It’s not that the 22-year-old homegrown junior from McKees Rocks played so poorly, it’s just that a save percentage of .881 and seven goals allowed in two games at the Carlson Center is not so worthy. A much more deserving selection for the goaltender position on the all-star squad would have clearly been Alaska – Anchorage Seawolves shot-stopper Michael Matyas, who foiled all three Penn State attempts in a shootout and posted a fine save percentage of .922 while conceding only four goals during his two games played in Fairbanks.

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On The Alaska – Fairbanks Nanooks


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The University of Alaska – Fairbanks began their 2014/15 NCAA campaign by claiming the trophy on offer at the annual Kendal Hockey Classic in Anchorage by virtue of a tie-breaker after blanking the Wisconsin Badgers and then dumping the Maine Black Bears. In doing so, the Nanooks, who finished with the winning record of 18 wins against 15 losses with four ties last season, won their first Kendall Hockey Classic title since 2009, the same competition that saw Alaska – Fairbanks shut out the Michigan Wolverines and then defeat the Mercyhurst Lakers decisively. The Nanooks under the tutelage of sixth-year head coach Dallas Ferguson, who are now ranked # 19 according to the latest national poll put out by USCHO.com, will look to build on this achievement when it hosts the Brice Alaska Goal Rush at the Carlson Center in Fairbanks this weekend.

Alaska – Fairbanks did lose their top two scoring leaders from last season. Canadian legionnaire Cody Kunyk, the 24-year-old center from Sherwood Park, Alberta, topped the Nanooks with both 22 goals and 43 points but is now with the Syracuse Crunch in the American Hockey League after skating in one National Hockey League game for the Tampa Bay Lightning last spring while countryman Colton Beck, the 24-year-old left wing from Langley, British Columbia, who led Alaska-Fairbanks with 25 assists, looks set to begin this season with the Idaho Steelheads of the East Coast Hockey League after appearing in three AHL games with the St. John’s Ice Caps last spring. Also gone is defenseman Michael Quinn, the 23-year-old from Surrey, British Columbia, who paced all Nanooks blueliners with 22 helpers and figures to be with the ECHL’s Cincinnati Cyclones this fall.

Alaska – Fairbanks do welcome back standout defenseman Colton Parayko, the third round choice (# 86 overall) of the St. Louis Blues at the 2012 NHL Draft. Last season, the 21-year-old junior from St. Albert, Alberta, who stands six-foot five inches tall and weights 225 pounds led all Nanooks rearguards with 26 points (seven goals). More importantly, Parayko was named the Western Collegiate Hockey Association’s Defensive Player of the Year and was also honored as an NCAA (West) Second Team All-America selection.

The highly decorated Parayko is already in commanding form this fall, as evidenced by points in each of the Nanooks’ first three games including the game-winning goal versus Wisconsin at the Kendall Hockey Classic as well as a critical third period strike that tied the contest against Air Force at the Brice Alaska Goal Rush on Friday night.

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Alaska – Fairbanks Nanooks defenseman Colton Parayko (4) pushed his career totals to 13 goals and 46 points in 73 career NCAA games against the Air Force Academy Falcons at the 2014 Brice Alaska Goal Rush tournament.
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This year’s defensive unit for Alaska – Fairbanks also features a pair of seniors, Trevor Campbell, the 24-year-old from Kansas City, Missouri, and Canadian legionnaire Nolan Kaiser, the 22-year-old from Calgary, Alberta, in addition to junior Josh Atkinson, the 21-year-old from Spruce Grove, Alberta, who was named to the Kenall Hockey Classic all-tournament team last weekend. Kyle Froese, the 20-year-old from Traverse City, Michigan, and Zach Frye, the 20-year-old from Spokane, Washington, are two freshman newcomers who have already earned places in the Nanooks’ regular line-up.

Alaska – Fairbanks deployed three different goaltenders who each made at least 10 appearances during the 2013/14 NCAA campaign and all of whom are returning to the Nanooks program once again this season. It does appear, however, as if Canadian legionnaire Davis Jones, the 22-year-old hailing from St. Albert, Alberta, who played in 10 games (3.06 avg, .900 svpct) as a freshman last term, has established himself as the clear number one netminder for Alaska – Fairbanks. Jones, who has now started the first three games for the Nanooks thus far this fall, posted a shutout in the season-opener against the University of Wisconsin and was ultimately named the Most Valuable Player at the Kendall Hockey Classic after the victory over the University of Maine.

Relegated to reserve status, if only at least for the time being, is Canadian legionnaire Sean Cahill, the 24-year-old senior from Calgary, Alberta, who led Alaska – Fairbanks with 17 appearances (2.40 avg, .900 svpct) and also had the best record with ten wins against six losses with one tie.

Canadian legionnaire Tyler Morley (31 ga, 17 go, 34 pts) ended up as the third-leading scorer for Alaska – Fairbanks last season and is back for his junior campaign. The 21-year-old from Burnaby, British Columbia, missed the Kendall Hockey Classic on account of injury but did notch a vital goal for the Nanooks against the Air Force Academy Falcons in the first round of the Brice Alaska Goal Rush on Friday night. The Nanooks also boast younger brother Brandon Morley, the 20-year-old who had five goals and 11 points in 37 games as a freshman left wing.

Alaska – Fairbanks will also be looking for offense from Canadian legionnaires Marcus Basara, the 21-year-old right wing from Vancouver, British Columbia, who led all WCHA freshmen with a dozen goals last season, and right wing Nolan Huysman, the 23-year-old junior from Ponoka, Alberta, who netted eight goals and 23 points in 36 games last term, as well as left wing Garrick Perry, the 24-year-old native of Apple Valley, Minnesota, who totaled 12 goals and 22 points in 37 games last season.

The Nanooks will be also hoping that left wing Jared Larson, the redshirt senior who appeared in 12 NCAA games but went pointless over the course of three year with the powerful University of Minnesota Golden Gophers, will recapture his form from last term — the 25-year-old who also comes from Apple Valley found the back of the net eight times in only 22 games in his first season for Alaska – Fairbanks.

Peter Krieger, the 20-year-old native of Oakdale, Minnesota, who played his high school hockey at the St. Thomas Academy in St. Paul, is one freshman forward to have made an immediate impact for the Nanooks — the rookie center scored the first goal in the 5-2 win over the University of Maine at the Kendall Hockey Classic and then shot the late game-winner against Air Force at the Brice Alaska Goal Rush in Fairbanks.

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Minnesota’s Lucia vs Penn State’s Gadowsky At Alaska – Fairbanks


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There are only half a dozen men’s ice hockey head coaches in the Big Ten Conference but, as matters stand at present, one-third of the six were actually given their very first opportunity to pilot an NCAA Division I program by the University of Alaska at Fairbanks.

It is rather difficult to directly compare the collegiate track records of current Minnesota Golden Gophers mentor Don Lucia and Penn State Nittany Lions bench boss Guy Gadowsky at the University of Alaska – Fairbanks if only for the simple fact that the Nanooks were still not yet members of the crack Central Collegiate Hockey Association when Lucia, the former University of Notre Dame defenseman who was the tenth round pick (# 168 overall) of the Philadelphia Flyers at the 1978 National Hockey League Draft, was in charge from the late 1980s thru the early 1990s.

It could be noted that Gadowsky, who played his collegiate ice hockey at Colorado College before embarking on a professional career in the North American minor leagues and Europe, managed to recruit and train more University of Alaska – Fairbanks players who ultimately went on to appear in the vaunted National Hockey League than Lucia did.

DON LUCIA at Alaska – Fairbanks
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87/88 … 21 wins … 10 losses … 2 ties …… Great West Hockey Conference
88/89 … 21 wins … 12 losses … 3 ties …… Division I independent
89/90 … 10 wins … 20 losses … 9 ties …… Division I independent
90/91 … 17 wins … 16 losses … 2 ties …… Division I independent
91/92 ….. 7 wins … 27 losses … 1 tie …….. Division I independent
92/93 … 23 wins … 12 losses … 2 ties …… Division I independent

future NHLers recruited & trained : Corey Spring

(to Colorado College)

GUY GADOWSKY at Alaska – Fairbanks
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99/00 ….. 6 wins … 25 losses … 3 ties …… Central Collegiate Hockey Asso.
00/01 ….. 9 wins … 19 losses … 8 ties …… Central Collegiate Hockey Asso.
01/02 … 22 wins … 12 losses … 3 ties …… Central Collegiate Hockey Asso.
02/03 … 15 wins … 14 losses … 7 ties …… Central Collegiate Hockey Asso.
03/04 … 16 wins … 19 losses … 1 tie …….. Central Collegiate Hockey Asso.

future NHLers recruited & trained : Aaron Voros, Jordan Hendry

(to Princeton University)

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