Walker, Sammy

NCAA Game Night: 10-6-18

#13 Minnesota Gophers 1 @ #1 Minnesota-Duluth Bulldogs 1

F Cole Koepke, UMD: 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM, 2 SOG, 0/2 FO
Season Totals: 1 GP, 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM

D Ryan Zuhlsdorf, MINN: 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM, 0 SOG, 0/1 FO
Season Totals: 1 GP, 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM
’17-‘18 Totals: 38 GP, 0-9-9, +1, 40 PIM

F Sammy Walker, MINN: 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM, 2 SOG
Season Totals: 1 GP, 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM

The top-ranked Minnesota-Duluth Bulldogs opened the 2018-19 campaign against in-state rival Minnesota Golden Gophers Saturday night in the first half of a home-and-home series that featured three Lightning prospects, two of which made their NCAA debuts as freshmen. The two teams battled to a 1-1 tie per new NCAA rules for non-conference contests that remain unsettled after a 5-minute 5-on-5 overtime session.

Freshman Gophers forward Sampo Ranta (COL, 2018 3rd round pick) notched his first collegiate goal in the 1st period with assists from senior Thomas Novak (NAS, 2015 3rd round pick) and Walker's former teammate at Edina High School defenseman Clayton Phillips (PIT, 2017 3rd round pick). Ranta was teammates with both Walker and Koepke at Sioux City last year, where Koepke edged the Finnish winger as the Musketeers scoring leader.

After a scoreless 2nd period, Peter Kreiger (undrafted) knotted the game on a power-play marker early in the 3rd. Bulldog forwards Koby Roth (undrafted) and Riley Tufte (DAL, 2016 1st round pick) helped set up the game-tying goal. These two teams will square off in St. Paul Sunday afternoon to complete the season series.

Alberta Golden Bears 4 @ #9 Denver Pioneers 6 (Exhibition)

F Cole Guttman, DEN: 0-3-3, +2, 2 PIM, 4 SOG, 6/12 FO
Season Totals: 0 GP, 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM

Lightning prospect Cole Guttman notched three assists and was 50% on draws in exhibition play Saturday night making his freshman NCAA debut for the ninth-ranked University of Denver Pioneers against the visiting Golden Bears from the University of Alberta. Guttman assisted on the first two goals of the game, one a power play marker by Norwegian Emilio Pettersen (CGY, 2018 6th round pick), before setting up the 3-3 equalizer just prior to the end of the 2nd period. Pettersen scored twice for the Pioneers with Denver also getting tallies from Jarid Lukosevicius (undrafted), Michael Davies (undrafted), Jaakko Heikkinen (undrafted), and Ryan Barrow (undrafted). After falling behind 2-0 in the 1st period, Alberta responded with three straight to take a brief 3-2 lead in the 2nd behind a pair of goals from Steven Owre (undrafted). The Golden Bears also got scores from Riley Keiser (undrafted) and Luke Philp (undrafted). Denver opens its 2018-19 NCAA campaign next weekend against the Air Force Academy and the University of Alabama-Huntsville.

*USCHO poll used for rankings

Clark Cup Playoffs (USHL): 4-25-18

United States Hockey League

Fargo Force 2 @ Omaha Lancers 1 (Saturday)
Fargo Force 3 @ Omaha Lancers 6 (Sunday)
Omaha Lancers 5 @ Fargo Force 6 (Tuesday)
Omaha Lancers 0 @ Fargo Force 2 (Wednesday)
Western Conference Round 2
Force wins series 3-1

D Nick Perbix , OMA: 4 GP, 0-2-2, +1, 14 PIM, 13 SOG, *Third Star*
Playoffs: 4 GP, 0-2-2, +1, 14 PIM
Season Totals: 56 GP, 4-25-29, +19, 38 PIM
’16-‘17 Totals (HS): 25 GP, 10-30-40, 6 PIM
Committed to: St. Cloud State University

After Fargo won a best-of-three wildcard series 2-0 against Tri-City, the Force and Lancers tangled for their Round 2 battle. The teams split games at Ralston Arena last weekend in Omaha, with Bolt prospect Nick Perbix earning Third Star honors in Game 2 with a pair of assists and 14 PIMs in a six-goal win. The series switched to Scheels Arena in Fargo with the Force prevailing on home ice to eliminate Omaha 3-1 in the best-of-five series.

This likely draws a close to Perbix’s impressive single rookie USHL campaign, as he is a 2018-19 commit to St. Cloud State University, and we look forward to the start of his NCAA career this fall.

Juniors Game Night: 4-14-18

United States Hockey League

** Note: Cole Guttman (Dubuque) was placed on injured reserved on December 22nd following the completion of the World Junior A Challenge tournament.

The Dubuque Fighting Saints finished as the #5 seed in the Eastern Conference, but it’s unknown if Guttman will return from injury for the Clark Cup playoffs.

Sioux City Musketeers 2 @ Omaha Lancers 3 (SO)

D Nick Perbix , OMA: 0-0-0, E, 2 PIM, 1 SOG
Season Totals: 56 GP, 4-25-29, +19, 38 PIM
’16-‘17 Totals (HS): 25 GP, 10-30-40, 6 PIM
Committed to: St. Cloud State University

F Sammy Walker, SC: 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM, 1 SOG
Season Totals (USHL): 17 GP, 2-7-9, -6, 4 PIM
’16-’17 Totals (USHL): 4 GP, 0-0-0, -3, 6 PIM
Season Totals (HS): 31 GP, 35-44-79, 16 PIM
’16-‘17 Totals (HS): 25 GP, 22-24-46, 6 PIM
Committed to: University of Minnesota

With playoff berths and #1 seeds on the line, Sioux City and Omaha closed out their 2017-18 USHL regular season campaign Saturday night. The Musketeers needed two points and a couple other teams to lose in order to sneak into the playoffs, and Lancers were in a battle with Waterloo for the #1 seed in the Western Conference.

The Lancers lit the lamp first, just 1:49 into the game, in front of 3700+ home fans at the Ralston Arena. But Luke Johnson (Providence commit) would set up a pair of Sioux City goals later in the 1st period, including a power play goal with one second left in the first, giving the Musketeers a 2-1 lead at the end of the first frame. Johnson was a former captain of Edina high school and teammate of Sammy Walker. Omaha would bury a power play marker of their own in the 2nd period to knot the score, and after a scoreless 3rd period and overtime session, the post season hopes of both teams would be decided by a skills competition. Both goalies turned aside the first 5 rounds of shooters before a pair of Miami (Ohio) commits squared off, with Ryan Savage (2018 draft eligible) finally solving Musketeer goalie Ben Kraws (2018 draft eligible) for the Lancer win.

One point for the shootout loss was not enough for Sioux City to clinch a playoff berth no matter the outcome of the other teams, and that mean that the 2017-18 hockey campaign for Bolt prospect Sammy Walker is for all intents an purposes over. It was a great season for Walker, the recipient of the prestigious Minnesota Mr. Hockey Award as the best high senior hockey player in the state. His helped lead his Edina, MN high school team to a 3rd place finish in the MN Class AA State championships, and his two goals and nine points for the Musketeers in 13 games after his high school season ended was a preview of what might be in store when he dons the Maroon and Gold for the Minnesota Golden Gophers this Fall.

For Omaha, the shootout win was not enough to clinch the top spot in the Western Conference, with Waterloo also winning their game Saturday night. Bolt prospect Nick Perbix and the Lancers will enter the Clark Cup playoffs as the #2 seed in the West.

Juniors Game Night: 4-13-18

United States Hockey League

** Note: Cole Guttman (Dubuque) was placed on injured reserved on December 22nd following the completion of the World Junior A Challenge tournament.

Lincoln Stars 1 @ Omaha Lancers 4

D Nick Perbix , OMA: 0-0-0, +1, 2 PIM, 1 SOG
Season Totals: 55 GP, 4-25-29, +19, 36 PIM
’16-‘17 Totals (HS): 25 GP, 10-30-40, 6 PIM
Committed to: St. Cloud State University

The Lancers got goals from four skaters and goalie Zach Driscoll (Bemidji State commit) stopped 35 of 36 Lincoln shots to lead the Lancers to the win. Omaha closes out their USHL regular season Saturday against Sammy Walker and the Sioux City Musketeers at Ralston Arena in Omaha. Perbix is one-point shy of a 30-point season going into the Lancers’ final game. Omaha sits one point behind the Waterloo Black Hawks for the best record in the Western Conference.

Sioux City Musketeers 3 @ Tri-City Storm 2

F Sammy Walker, SC: 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM, 3 SOG
Season Totals (USHL): 16 GP, 2-7-9, -6, 4 PIM
’16-’17 Totals (USHL): 4 GP, 0-0-0, -3, 6 PIM
Season Totals (HS): 31 GP, 35-44-79, 16 PIM
’16-‘17 Totals (HS): 25 GP, 22-24-46, 6 PIM
Committed to: University of Minnesota

The Storm scored a couple of late 3rd period goals to attempt a 3-0 deficit rally to the Musketeers, but Sioux City goalie and Miami (Ohio) commit Ben Kraws (2018 draft eligible) didn’t surrender the third. The Musketeers close out their USHL regular season Saturday against Nick Perbix and the Omaha Lancers at Ralston Arena in Omaha. Sioux City is in a three-way battle with the Chicago Steel and the Cedar Rapid Roughriders for that final 12th slot in the USHL playoffs, although it will a longshot for Musketeers with 59 points to leap frog Chicago with 61 and Cedar Rapids with 60. Chicago is playing Central Illinois, by far the worst team in the league, and Cedar Rapids is playing Madison, the 3rd worst team in the league. With Walker’s NCAA eligibility to play for the Minnesota Gophers next season, there’s no chance he would join the Crunch in the event of Sioux City not making the playoffs.

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