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ECAC Tournament: March 22-23, 2019

ECAC Tournament Semifinals – March 22nd @ Lake Placid
Brown Bears 0 vs #10 Cornell Big Red 6

ECAC Tournament Finals – March 23rd @ Lake Placid
#9 Clarkson Golden Knights 3 vs #10 Cornell Big Red 2 (OT)
Clarkson wins the 2019 ECAC Tournament Championship

D Alex Green, COR: 2 GP, 0-0-0, +1, 2 PIM, 2 SOG
Season Totals: 18 GP, 1-3-4, -4, 8 PIM
’17-’18 Totals: 29 GP, 2-8-10, +9, 23 PIM

In the ECAC semifinals Friday afternoon, Cornell goalie Matthew Galajda (undrafted) pitched a 30-save shutout of the Bears to lead the Big Red to a berth in the ECAC finals against Clarkson. Tristan Mullin (undrafted) lead Cornell offensively with a goal and an assist.

On Saturday night, Mullin notched the equalizer in the 3rd to force overtime after a pair of 1st period power-play markers from Devin Brosseau (undrafted) had given the Golden Knights the 2-1 lead. Brosseau set up Chris Klack (undrafted) for the OT game winner for Clarkson and the 2019 ECAC tournament championship. The goal itself was controversial, the result of an un-whistled offsides, but one that was non-reviewable because the Golden Knights had briefly brought the puck back into the neutral zone. The game-winner was scored on Cornell goalie Austin McGrath (undrafted), seeing his first action in 5 weeks when he had to relieve Galajda in OT after Galajda was bizarrely injured when the goal fell onto his back during play.

Both teams will certainly earn a berth in the NCAA tournament when the tournament selections will be televised on ESPNU Sunday night, March 24.

*USCHO poll used for rankings

NCHC Frozen Faceoff: March 22-23, 2019

NCHC Tournament Semifinals – March 22nd @ Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul
Colorado College Tigers 2 vs #1 St. Cloud State Huskies 5
#5 Denver Pioneers 0 vs #4 Minnesota-Duluth Bulldogs 3
St. Cloud State and Minnesota-Duluth advance to tournament finals

NCHC Tournament Finals – March 23rd @ Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul
Colorado College Tigers 1 vs #5 Denver Pioneers 6 (consolation)
#4 Minnesota-Duluth Bulldogs 3 vs #1 St. Cloud State Huskies 2 (2OT) (championship)
Minnesota-Duluth are the 2019 NCHC Conference Champions

D Nick Perbix, STC: 2 GP, 0-0-0, +2, 4 PIM, 3 SOG
Season Totals: 38 GP, 5-15-20, +25, 16 PIM

F Cole Koepke, UMD: 2 GP, 2-0-2, +2, 0 PIM, 9 SOG
Season Totals: 38 GP, 7-10-17, +9, 14 PIM

F Cole Guttman, DEN: 2 GP, 0-0-0, -1, 0 PIM, 4 SOG, 17/33 FO
Season Totals: 38 GP, 12-11-22, +14, 18 PIM

The 2019 NCHC Frozen Faceoff featured Lightning prospects on three of the four represented teams, all ranked in the Top-5 by the USCHO.

On Friday night, the top-ranked Huskies cruised to a berth in Saturday’s finals handily dispensing with the Tigers after St. Cloud reeled off four-straight goals. Kings prospect David Hrenak (LAK, 2018 5th round pick) made 31-saves, allowing just a pair of power plays, and Patrick Newell (undrafted) leading the way for the Huskies with a goal and an assist.

In the other semifinal match, UMD goalie Hunter Shepard (undrafted) pitched a 25-save shutout to blank Denver while Bolt prospect Cole Koepke scored twice for the Bulldogs to lead Minnesota-Duluth in the finals berth against St. Cloud State. The two teams played a scoreless first 40 minutes before Koepke wristed the first goal of the game just 42 seconds into 3rd period. Koepke and Louie Roehl (undrafted) both scored empty netters in the last two minutes of the game to put the UMD victory on ice. Koepke also led the game with five shots on goal. Denver netminder and Red Wings prospect Filip Larsson (DET, 2016 6th round pick) allowed just one goal on 31 shots in defeat, but it was one goal too many.

The Pioneers rediscovered their offense Saturday night in the consolation game against cross-state rival Colorado College. Blackhawks prospect Ian Mitchell (CHI, 2017 2nd round pick) and Liam Finlay (undrafted) both scored twice and Devin Cooley (undrafted) allowed just one goal on 22 shots as Denver claimed 3rd place in the conference tourney.

In the finals Saturday night, UMD bested the #1 St. Cloud squad in a dramatic double OT thriller when Wild prospect Nick Swaney (MIN, 2017 7th round pick) fired home the game-winner for the Bulldogs. Both teams scored even-strength in the first, and the both teams added special teams markers in the 3rd – a power play goal by the Huskies and shortie by the Bulldogs – to force the extra sessions. Shepard made 37 saves to give UMD its second conference championship in three years, while Hrenak made 27 saves in defeat.

All three of the teams will certainly earn a berth in the NCAA tournament when the tournament selections will be televised on ESPNU Sunday night, March 24.

*USCHO poll used for rankings

CHL Game Night: 3-23-19

Quebec Major Junior Hockey League

First Round

No. 13 Moncton Wildcats 5 @ No. 4 Baie-Comeau Drakkar 2
Best-of-7 series tied, 1-1

C/W Gabriel Fortier, BC: 0-0-0, -3, 0 PIM, 2 SOG, 3/9 FO, 2 Hits
Playoff Totals: 2 GP, 0-0-0, +1, 0 PIM
Season Totals: 68 GP, 35-48-83, +41, 27 PIM
17-18 Totals: 66 GP, 26-33-59, -11, 59 PIM

Francis Leclerc (undrafted) stood on his head again for Moncton, stopping 39 shots en route to a 5-2 Game 2 win over the Drakkar. Leclerc was first star in both games. He stopped 47 shots Friday. Fortier and Baie-Comeau will hope to solve him in Moncton on Tuesday in Game 3.

No. 12 Chicoutimi Sagueneens 2 @ No. 5 Rimouski Oceanic 3 (3OT)
Rimouski leads best-of-7 series, 2-0

C Jimmy Huntington, RIM: 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM, 6 SOG, 5 Hits, 24/51 FO
Playoff Totals: 2 GP, 2-1-3, -1, 4 PIM
Season Totals: 66 GP, 40-52-92 +41, 52 PIM
17-18 Totals (Vic): 68 GP, 18-40-58, +5, 42 PIM

D Radim Salda, RIM: 0-0-0, +1, 2 PIM, 4 SOG, 2 Hits
Playoff Totals: 2 GP, 0-1-1, E, 4 PIM
Season Totals: 48 GP, 10-20-30, +17, 36 PIM
17-18 Totals (SJ): 62 GP, 10-31-41, -37, 78 PIM

The Sags took a 2-1 lead late in the third period only to have Rimouski storm back and tie the game with 1:04 left in regulation. From there the game went to three overtimes before D'Artagnan Joly (Flames) scored to put Rimouski up in the series, 2-0. Both games went to overtime as Lightning prospect Jimmy Huntington scored in the extra session in Game 1. In Game 2, Chicoutimi goaltender Alexis Shank (undrafted) made 80 saves. Rimouski goalie Colten Ellis (undrafted) made 53. The winner was scored when a point shot was blocked at the top of the circles and Joly spun around and threw a wrister on net that found the far side of the net. Shank was not helped out by his defenseman, who skated in front of him as the shot was being taken and Shank had to adjust his sight line. Radim Salda was on the ice for the winner, manning the weakside point. Game 3 is Tuesday in Chicoutimi.

ECHL Game Night: 3-24-19 Solar Bears @ Everblades

Orlando Solar Bears 4 @ Florida Everblades 3 (SO)

W Olivier Archambault, ORL: Did not play
(AHL contract)
Season Totals (ORL): 4 GP, 0-0-0, -3, 2 PIM
Season Totals (SYR): 7 GP, 0-3-3, +2, 2 PIM
17-18 Totals (Allen, ECHL): 19 GP, 13-18-31, +12, 32 PIM
17-18 Totals (SJ & SYR, AHL): 41 GP, 12-11-23, +2, 35 PIM

W/C Troy Bourke, ORL: 0-0-0, E, 2 PIM, 4 SOG, *First Star*
(AHL contract)
Season Totals (ORL): 24 GP, 10-28-38, +9, 18 PIM
Season Totals (SYR): 25 GP, 1-5-6, -3, 6 PIM
17-18 Totals (ADK): 22 GP, 10-22-32, +11, 18 PIM
17-18 Totals (SYR): 6 GP, 1-0-1, E, 2 PIM

C Mitch Hults, ORL: 0-1-1, E, 0 PIM, 2 SOG
Season Totals (ORL): 32 GP, 6-16-22, -5, 24 PIM
Season Totals (SYR): 9 GP, 1-3-4, -2, 4 PIM
Season Totals (SD): 2 GP, 0-1-1, E, 0 PIM
17-18 Totals (Utah): 5 GP, 2-5-7, -2, 10 PIM
17-18 Totals (SD): 53 GP, 10-14-24, -10, 8 PIM

G Connor Ingram, ORL: Did not play
Season Totals (ORL): 7 GP, 3-2-0, 3.63 GAA, .893 sv%, 0 SO
Season Totals (SYR): 22 GP, 14-7-0, 2.26 GAA, .922 sv%, 6 SO
17-18 Totals (SYR): 35 GP, 20-11-0, 2.33 GAA, .914 sv%, 4 SO

C/W Otto Somppi, ORL: 0-2-2, +1, 0 PIM, 1 SOG
Season Totals (ORL): 16 GP, 8-10-18, +6, 6 PIM
Season Totals (SYR): 21 GP, 1-1-2, -2, 6 PIM
17-18 Totals (Halifax, QMJHL): 59 GP, 28-55-83, +39, 28 PIM

Orlando continues to be a thorn in Florida’s side, this time defeating the first-place Everblades 4-3 in a shootout. Syracuse property Troy Bourke was scoreless in the game but had the shootout winner. Otto Somppi also scored in the shootout and had two assists in regulation.

The Solar Bears were without the services of goaltender Connor Ingram, who was reassigned again from Syracuse to Orlando after the Crunch signed University of Northern Michigan goaltender Atte Tolvanen to an AHL contract. Reports state that Ingram is back in Orlando for the duration of the season after a meeting with Lightning GM Julien BriseBois in Syracuse. There still hasn’t been any concrete news as to what Ingram did to land this far in the organization’s doghouse.

The Solar Bears (36-23-4-1) remain behind Florida in second place in the South Division. Orlando will bus up to Atlanta to face the Gladiators next Wednesday for the first of a 4-in-5 set in the South.

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