18 March 2007

The All-WCHA Hottie Teams

The conference tournaments are over, the NCAA regionals are set, and that means only one thing: it's time to give out the most prestigious honors in college hockey. For the third year in a row, Runninwiththedogs presents the All-WCHA Hottie Teams!

Coach: Jamie Russell**
Bloggers: MeanEgirl, Boosh, and The Darkness, of the Tech Hockey Blog

1st team:
F Chris Porter, UND**
F Darcy Zajac, UND
F Tyler Ruegsegger, DU
D Taylor Chorney, UND
D Trent Palm, UMD
G Rob Nolan, MTU*

2nd team:
F Ryan Peckskamp, SCSU
F Michael Forney, UND
F T.J. Oshie, UND*
D Ryan Berry, UAA
D R.J. Linder, MSU-M*
G Nathan Lawson, UAA*

3rd team:
F Bryan McGregor, UMD*
F Chris VandeVelde, UND
F MacGregor Sharp, UMD
D Zach Blom, DU**
D David Carlisle, SCSU
G Glenn Fisher, DU

Freshman team:
F Tyler Ruegsegger, DU
F Darcy Zajac, UND
F Ryan Peckskamp, SCSU
D Trent Palm, UMD
D Drew Dobson, MTU
G Alex Stalock, UMD

*denotes two-time honoree
**denotes three-time honoree

This year was slightly different, in that I consulted others for their input (thanks for all the photos and campaigns!) I agreed, with some advice, disagreed with some, and was totally puzzled by some. I decided to invite fellow fans to make their own lists.

Suze's Picks (UAA)
F Patrick Mullen, DU
F Jay Beagle, UAA
F Chris Porter, UND
D J.P. Testwuide, DU
D Alex Goligoski, UMTC
G Rob Nolan, MTU

Let's Go Mavs's Picks (MSU-M)
F Darcy Zajac, UND
F Braydon Cox, CC
F Ryan Peckskamp, SCSU
D R.J. Linder, MSU-M
D Brian Kilburg, MSU-M
G Rob Nolan, MTU

Catie's Picks (DU)
F Jonathon Toews, UND
F Andrew Gordon, SCSU
F Patrick Mullen, DU
D Andrew Thomas, DU
D Mike Vannelli, UMTC
G Bobby Goepfert, SCSU

Nin's Picks (UW)
F Patrick Mullen, DU
F Matt Tyree, MSU-M
F Michael Gergen, UMD
D R.J. Linder, MSU-M
D Blake Friesen, MSU-M
G Rob Nolan, MTU

MeanEgirl's Picks (MTU)
F Justin Bourne, UAA
F Darcy Zajac, UND
F Brandon Polich, CC
D Casey Borer, SCSU
D David Fischer, UMTC
G Rob Nolan, MTU

WinTwins's Picks (SCSU)
F Brandon Vossberg, DU
F Andrew Gordon, SCSU
F Braydon Cox, CC
D R.J. Linder, MSU-M
D Casey Borer, SCSU
G Rob Nolan, MTU

Melmac's Picks (UMTC)
F Justin Bourne, UAA
F Chris Tarkir, UAA
F Chris VandeVelde, UND
D J.P. Testwuide, DU
D Mike Vannelli, UMTC
G Rob Nolan, MTU

HockeyMom's Picks (UND)
F Chris Porter, UND
F T.J. Oshie, UND
F Tyler Ruegsegger, DU***
D Taylor Chorney, UND***
D Trent Palm, UMD***
G Rob Nolan, MTU***

***denotes athlete filled in by me. HockeyMom voted nine times for Porter and once for T.J. She sucks at counting.

16 March 2007

If You Leave Me Now...

...you'll take away the biggest part of me

Ooh, no, baby please don't go

If you leave me now, you'll take away the very heart of me

Ooh, no, baby please don't go

A love like ours is love that's hard to find
How could we let it slip away?
We've come too far to leave it all behind
How could we end it all this way?
When tomorrow comes we'll both regret
Things we said today...

If you leave me now, you'll take away the biggest part of me
Ooh, no, baby please don't go.

In case you haven't heard, Mason Raymond is headed to Manitoba, and Matt Niskanen to Iowa, to play in the minor leagues for the Vancouver Canucks and Dallas Stars, respectively. This comes on the heels of their All-WCHA First Team selections, and Nisky's selection as My Guy of the Year.

I guess this was somewhat expected, and it's better that it happened sooner rather than later, but I really really hate that they will be playing for my two most hated NHL teams. Both affiliate teams are located fairly close to here, so I hope to make a trip down to cheer for them.

I wish them all the best, but I really do wish they had returned for one more season. I guess we'll never know what might have been, and we'll have to re-load for next season without them, but I'm allowed to wish.

We'll miss you, guys. Keep your heads up and your sticks on the ice.

*photos courtesy of www.umdbulldogs.com

15 March 2007



I was on Dancemania with THGIA! We were the girls in leather!


Oh yes, it's here, comrades. I'm leaving for the Final Five in one hour, with UMDDogz and The Hottest Girl in Alary's. It's going to be off the chain.

Section 115. Probably the only 'Dogs fans in the section. Come buy me beers say hello. Don't be offended if I don't remember afterwards.

13 March 2007

The Count

The final numbers are in!
First of all, My Guy of the Year is Matt Niskanen! He ran away with the competition, scoring 31 points this year. Michael Gergen (16) and Mike Curry (14) combined don't even add up to Nisky's total. Rounding out the competition are Matt McKnight (9) and Jason Garrison (3), both of whom were injured for extended periods of time.
The Freshman Scoring Champions are Drew Akins and Jordan Fulton, both with 10 points. Akins was ahead for quite awhile, put Fulton put on a charge in the last few games to catch him. Following up are Alex Stalock (4), Logan Gorsalitz (2), Trent Palm (1), and Chase Ryan (1). I fully expect to see all of these guys make great improvements next year, especially once they are in the regular lineup.
And now, for the comparisons.
Color coding:
This year
Opponents this year
Last year
Opponents last year
Okay. Got it? Here we go.
Record: 13-21-5 11-25-4
League Finish: 9th 9th
Playoff Record: 1-2-0 2-2-0
It's hard to show by the numbers the differences between the teams, but the 'Dogs won only 1 game in the second half of the 2005-2006 series, then rebounded to beat Denver in the playoffs. I believe the 2006-2007 Bulldogs were much better, finishing at .500 in the second half of the season after a very difficult and trying first half. We also played two 0-0 games, and our defense and goaltending improved as the season wore on.
Goals: 103 121 97 148
Goals per Game: 2.64 3.10 2.42 3.70
Penalties: 303 267 306 279
Penalty Minutes: 691 603 792 703
Penalties per Game: 7.8 6.8 7.7 7.0
Penalty Minutes per Game: 17.7 15.5 19.8 17.6
Power Play: 44/205 (21.4%) 32/205 (15.6%)
Penalty Kill: 198/234 (84.5%) 179/229 (78.2%)
Strangely, we scored about the same number of goals this year as last year (only a 6 goal difference), but our opponents are scoring less (27 goal difference), so clearly our defense has improved. We took about the same number of penalties (3 penalty difference), but we took about 100 less minutes in penalties, which means we are taking less majors/misconducts, probably due the NCAA's points of emphasis for the start of the 05-06 season, and the time it took for us to adjust. However, our opponents took, on average, one less penalty per game than the 'Dogs did. Is it a discipline issue? Or a conspiracy issue? (I'm kidding! Kidding!) Our PP (3rd in league) and PK (4th) were much improved, and our combined special teams ranked first in the league.
Games/Starts/Minutes: 18/17/1065:06
Record: 8-7-2 (2 SO) (9th in league)
GAA: 2.14 (5th)
SV%: .922 (3rd)
Games/Starts/Minutes: 23/22/1363:30
Record: 5-14-3 (1 SO) (14th)
GAA: 3.34 (14th)
SV%: .881 (14th)
GAA: 2.98
SV%: .893
Games/Starts/Minutes: 28/26/1636:13
Record: 6-16-4
GAA: 3.45
SV%: .877
Games/Starts/Minutes: 8/7/415:49
Record: 2-5-0
GAA: 3.32
SV%: .892
Games/Starts/Minutes: 7/7/358:22
Record: 3-4-0
GAA: 4.19
SV%: .848
GAA: 3.66
SV%: .871
Here is where you really start to see the difference between this year and last year. We only had 2 more wins and 1 more tie, but our GAA and SV% are drastically improved. We were keeping our games close. It's sad to see Al at the bottom of the league, but he will have next year to really show his stuff. Josh Johnson deserves a standing ovation (the one from the National Hockey Center fans was great!, but this guy needs another) for his improvement. Josh gave up half as many goals per game this year as he did last year. Other coaches dream of that kind of improvement.
Scoring Champion (F) Mason Raymond (46) Tim Stapleton (30)
Scoring Champion (D) Matt Niskanen (31) Matt Niskanen (14)
Mase was the second leading scorer last year, behind Buster, but holy cow, our leading scorer had 16 more points this year? WOW! Additionally, Nisky more than doubled his point totals, while leading the d-corps in scoring both years. Josh Meyers will give him a run for his money next year, since he SHALL be healthy for all of next year, AND Nisky will be coming back. It is the will of the people.
So, blah blah blah, stats stats stats, I hope you've all found enlightenment.

MeanEgirl's Day Off

MEg and tDarkness forced me to go to the Mall of America today.

I'm sort of embarrassed to admit it, since those of us who leave near the MoA never go there. What's the point? There are 4 malls closer to me than the MoA, and I don't have to walk 10 miles if I need to get to a store across the mall. Plus, I hate shopping. And people.

Anyway, how could I turn down a chance to hang out with someone my own size? I should point out that, if you stacked me on MEg's shoulders, we would only come up to tDarkness's elbow. He is very tall.

The trip ended up being fabulous, because I was able to find a fuzzy UMD hockey helmet I can wear to the Final Five. Superb. The Darkness has a hat fetish, so he found 2 hats, and MEg found some excellent tailgating supplies. MEg is afraid of rides that might be fun, so we didn't go on any rides. We mostly spent our time looking for some banana flavored ice cream and a cowbell.

Here we are looking like pimp mamas at the greatest of all stores, Dollar Tree.

Here we are masquerading as Bucky and Goldy fans.

Now we are pretending to be CC and DU fans, except we're not killing each other. It's fitting, since Tech bounced CC this year, and we knocked Denver out last year!

It felt like I was wearing a dead Gopher on my head. ::Shudder::

Here we're testing out some gear in case they need extra players during the Final Five.

There's evidently going to be a meet and stalk greet tomorrow at the Plymouth Old Chicago. It was organized by the fabulous Brenthoven and once again, MEg is forcing me to attend. It starts at 8.

*Edit* Evidently, the joke's on us!

12 March 2007

Last Night

Last night was a tough loss for the Dogs, but honestly, even though it was really, really, really, really, really, really devastating, it...

Well, it wasn't that bad.

FIRST AND FOREMOST, I think it would have killed me if Kronick had scored that OT goal. It would have been a knife through my heart. And then liver. And spinal column. And pinky toe. I commented to DA and UMDDogz that I could handle a loss, as long as it wasn't handed to us by Dan Kronick.

So, there is a Hockey God, and I was spared. I had the home defibrilator on standby just in case.

I know, it's so cliche, but how can you root for someone to lose in a game like that? Even a rival. As I noted to a SCSU fan who sent me some hottie pictures, I think we've got a pretty good one going. Screw the Gophers, who think that everyone gets up for them and no one else.

Each team had some chances, some missed opportunities, and some unbelievable luck. Pipes, fanned shots, fabulous saves from out of nowhere. St. Cloud had 2 goals that were (correctly) disallowed, but by mere centimeters. Our PK shone, especially when we started OT down a player. I can't imagine how tired and sore those guys were/still are. It sounded like quite a few guys were playing through varied injuries.

I'm proud of the Dogs for this weekend. There were a lot of fans from various teams (meaning just about everyone who made a prediction) thinking the Dogs would get manhandled. And why wouldn't they think that? We've been shut out twice by St. Cloud this year, and beaten in all four games this season. Instead, we won the first game and took the games we lost to overtime and triple overtime. Sunday was the fifth longest game in college hockey history. I don't buy the excuse that St. Cloud underachieved. Maybe they underachieved in their game against UND, as some of their fans claim. I just think the Dogs finally started playing to their ability.

To the senior class, there may be only four of you, but you were each an integral part of this Bulldog team, and you will be missed tremendously. I'll be posting a senior goodbye later, but I don't think I could thank those guys enough.

Win or lose, we made a game of it, and I couldn't be happier for the effort...

Okay, I could be happier. If we'd won. But next year, we're going to be killers.

11 March 2007


The outlook wasn't brilliant for the Bulldog six that day,
The score stood two to two, with but sixteen minutes to play.

And then when Fulton fanned a shot, and Gergen did the same,
A pall-like silence fell upon the patrons of the game.

A straggling few got up to go in deep despair.
The rest clung to that hope which springs eternal in the human breast.
They thought, "If only the Bulldogs could get themselves reset.
We'd put up even money now, if Raymond hit the net."

Akins seemed a bit lost, without linemate Curry;
And Kemper, who was a wrecker, took a sketchy penalty
So upon that stricken multitude, grim melancholy set;
for there seemed but little chance of anyone hitting the net.

But Gergen let drive some good shots, to the wonderment of all.
And Fulton tried a wraparound, but none would get the call.
And when the whistle blew, and men saw what had occurred,
there was nothing in the net, except Bobby Goepfert.

Then from five thousand throats and more there rose a lusty yell;
it rumbled through the valley, it rattled in the dell;
it pounded through on the mountain and recoiled upon the plain;
for the Bulldogs, mighty Bulldogs, were refusing to be slain.

There was ease in McKnight's manner as he stepped into his place,
there was pride in Carroll's bearing and a smile lit Nisky's face.
And when, among the many cheers, the face-off match was set,
no stranger in the crowd could doubt tDogs would hit the net.

Ten thousand eyes were on them as they skated up the ice.
Five thousand tongues applauded, cause Johnson's saves were nice.
Then, while the writhing Goepfert was flopping on the ground,
the Bulldogs all dug at it, but no one could get it 'round.

And now the rubber cylinder came hurtling through the air,
and Johnson stood a-watching it in haughty grandeur there.
Shot by the sturdy Husky the puck unheeded sped --
"That ain't my style," said Johnson.

"No goal!" Jon Campion said.
From the benches, maroon and gold, there went up a muffled roar,
like the beating of the storm waves on a stern and distant shore.
"Kill him! Kill the umpire!" shouted someone (probably the Bob),
and it's likely they'd have killed him had not replay done its job.

With a smile of certain victory, each Bulldog's visage shone,
they stilled the rising tumult, they bade the game go on.
At a signal from the referee, the linesman dropped the puck,
the goal horn blasted loudly, but Jon Campion said, "No luck!"

"Fraud!" cried the maddened Huskies, and their fans answered "Fraud!"
But at scornful looks from Bulldogs, the audience was awed.
They saw each face grow stern and cold, they saw the muscles strain,
and they knew that Johnson wouldn't let that puck go by again.

The sneer has fled from Fulton's lip, the teeth are clenched in hate.
He enters the faceoff circle, against a guy named Nate.
And now the linesman holds the puck, and now he lets it go,
and now the air is shattered by the force of Nodl's blow.

Oh, somewhere in this favored land the sun is shining bright.
The band is playing somewhere, and somewhere hearts are light.
And, somewhere men are laughing, and little children shout,
but there is no joy in Mudville -- the mighty Bulldogs got knocked out.

*this poem is an adaptation of "Casey at the Bat" by Ernest L. Thayer

09 March 2007

0-fer? No, Sir!

Ugh. I kind of hate that post title, but I'm going with it anyway.

The disgusting fact is, this is our first win against a team from the state of Minnesota.

BUT WHO CARES?????????????? WE WON!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Who cares if Kronick scored a goal?? It was the ONLY GOAL!
Who cares if we're in 9th place?? We didn't care last year! (Well, we cared, but it didn't stop us from beating Denver!)
Who cares if St. Cloud fans left in droves after Meyers scored on the PP? I'm sure tUMD fans stayed til the end!

I listened to the game tonight with UMDDogz, The Alleged Webmaster, and DA, while flipping between the HS hockey tournament and the Gophers-Seawolves game, while monitoring the Wild game through GameTracker. It was sort of a lot of hockey. You might say.

Ummm... I don't even know what to say, I'm so excited! Yay! Let's get out there and SWEEP!

Important other news: 7 Bulldogs were named to the WCHA All-Academic Team.
Andrew Carroll
Jason Garrison*
Michael Gergen*
Matt Greer
Matt Niskanen*
Mason Raymond
MacGregor Sharp

*denotes one of My Guys

Playoff Wins Until We Surpass Last Year's Total: DONE!

My "Guys" Competition:
Matt Niskanen: 30
Michael Gergen: 16
Mike Curry: 14
Matt McKnight: 8
Jason Garrison: 2

Freshmen Competition:
Akins: 10
Fulton: 9
Stalock: 4
Gorsalitz: 2
Palm: 1
C. Ryan: 1
(Ahem, freshmen!)

On Notice:
Drew Akins: GD 19 PD 8
Trent Palm: GD 26 PD 26
Ryan Geris: GD 36 PD 7
Travis Gawryletz: GD 37 PD 4
Matt Greer: GD 14 PD 14
Jeff McFarland: GD 13 PD 13
Jay Cascalenda: GD 13 PD 13
Michael Gergen: GD 10 PD 6
Jordan Fulton: GD 9
MacGregor Sharp: GD 4
Andrew Carroll: GD 6 PD 6

Postcards from RWD, Vol 8: Hottie Warning

Dear Jamie Russell,
This should not be.
(photo from INCH)
(game recap coming once I stop shaking from excitement)

08 March 2007

A Thought...

...while watching the high school hockey tournament:

What if you were forced to listen to a conversation between Lou Nanne and Sid Hartman?

06 March 2007

It's The Most Wonderful Time Of The Year

No, not Christmas...

Not even the playoffs...

March is when the All-WCHA Hottie Team is announced!

This year, since I have about five or six more readers than the zero I had last year, I'm enlisting your help. If you've got a hottie on your team, send evidence! Especially if you think the guy's going to be overlooked (As Mae West says, "It's better to be looked over than over-looked.")

The All-Hottie Team works the same way as the regular All-Conference Team. There's a first team, second team, third team, and freshman team.

Please send your submissions to Runwiththedogs(at)hotmail(dot)com. And don't send me a virus, because I will cut you.

***EDIT*** Readers are, as always, invited to make their own teams. I've contacted some of you individually, but this is open to anyone. It's 3 forwards, 2 defensemen, and Robby Nolan 1 goalie.

05 March 2007

Rolling Out The Red Carpet

I wish I'd gone to the MTU-UMTC games this past weekend. Not because I'm a huge fan of either team, but because I could have defended the honor of the Tech fans being harrassed in videos you can find over at the Michigan Tech Hockey Blog. I realize the losers doing the harrassing got thrown out, so physical violence wasn't required, and I probably would have gotten kicked out as well, but I think a youtube video of me and my ninja skillz would have been pretty cool. I think I've met those guys before... or at least, some guys EXACTLY like that, at that exact venue.

Also, I don't understand why Boosh doesn't like Fundamentals of Engineering Thermodynamics. It is an excellent book that is, believe it or not, in my own little reference library. If you want a horrible book, try Introduction to Nuclear Engineering by Lamarsh and Baratta. But then you'll want to kill yourself.

01 March 2007

Snow Day

The most awesome thing in the world happened today: my work closed early! I feel like a child again!

Apparently, in Duluth, things are getting crazy. Thunder and lightning, spray from Lake Superior washing over the lift bridge, and no hope of rescue since the plows have stopped running. It was good thinking for the Badgers to get going early, as they missed the worst of the storm and are holed up in the Holiday Inn probably chowing down on room service.

There IS a Gauntlet forthcoming from my dear friend at the Wisconsin Hockey Blog, so sit tight and count some snowflakes.

Also, you could read this fab article about the Bulldog seniors, and more specifically Biggie Mac, over at the WCHA site. I'm going to go watch Back to the Future. RWD out.