HOWEVER, I'm always thinking about my reader. Er, readers, I suppose. Still can't get used to that. I had SEVERAL sources in Mad-town for this game covering it from all angles: from skyboxes to dive bars. And Simmerdown, once-and-future? author of the Penalty Box's Maroon Lampoon, agreed to give me a recap. This is great, because it means original content with zippo effort from your #1 gal.
Note: all of the opinions in this article are Simmerdown's own, and are not necessarily the opinions of RWD. Especially those on My Guy Gergzilla.
Hey all RWD readers, Simmerdown here. I was asked to give a recap of the past weekend here by your wonderful host since I made the trip into Sconnie for the games, so here goes:
Friday Night – Can I get some Spotted Cow?
First of all, the drive through Wisconsin on 94 is quite possibly the most boring drive, second only to Nebraska. Nothing to look at but open land, cows, and second cousins riding in pickup trucks [How does open land fit in a pickup truck?]. We got into town around 5:30 and made our way to my buddy’s house (Bulldoginbadgerland over at tPB). Once we got to the Kohl Center I thought I had entered Stalingrad [now known as Volgograd, in case you're in a geography bee]. Everyone was in red, and they all thought alike. Obviously a group of people wearing the opposing team’s jersey are automatic [sphincters]. It wasn’t so bad the first couple of times but my god, think of something original to say. McCarthy is gone, you can think on your own once again. I had one [donkey] tell me that I could look forward to serving his kids french fries since I go to UMD. Nevermind the fact that I have already graduated and go to law school. Whatever, he was a communication major and was wearing a red Polaris jacket [god, they're everywhere]. I didn’t know UW accepted St. Cloud transfers…
The Kohl Center is an impressive building, for a basketball arena. The sea of red idiots jumping around on cue is enough to make you vomit. The same chants, the same cheers, the same strange badger mating ritual every night. I guess repetition is the goal of any brainwashing cult. [Oh yeah!] The game itself was very boring, with ugly goals scored by both teams. J-Con (RWD required me to mention him at least once per night) [Yes, but to be fair, I also said "No need for any sort of Jacky quota... he'll just be so awesome you'll have to mention him. Double points for Mike Curry references." AND I DON'T SEE ANY OF THOSE!!!!] scored first off a big rebound given up by Connelly. Later in the first Kishel took a hooking penalty and the BADgers tied it up with the ensuing PP. Davies took a rink wide pass on the near side about 8 feet out and beat Stalock through the five-hole as he slid over. [See, you never get this kind of analysis from RWD. I'm too busy trying to find a damn spoon for Bruce's kid's freaking Dippin' Dots before the world ends to like, pay attention to games and stuff.] It was the only goal all weekend that was remotely on Al. Of course, it was only 1 of 2 that he let in. Later in the second period the Communists scored again after a scrum in front left Al laying helpless in front and the defence [EARTH TO MEYERS!!! COME IN, MEYERS!!!] couldn’t find the strength to MOVE SOME FRICKIN' BODIES from the front of the net. The Bulldogs played a much better third period, and got some decent chances from their first and second lines. Bucky sealed the game with an empty net goal by Gorowsky (how ironic) [this is the literary device known as foreshadowing, folks] in the third and our beloved Bulldogs fell 3-1.
After the game we made our way over to the Echo Tap to drown our sorrows. That place was awesome to us. Both bartenders knew their hockey, and although there was the usual good natured ribbing, both in person and over the loudspeaker, they also hooked us up with free “pity shots.” I even got a free shot just for closing my tab. [Is this some sort of miracle? Although Stacy seemed to have trouble remembering at the CC last weekend...] I later filled my belly at Ian’s Pizza (they seriously need one of these in Duluth. Luce doesn’t have a mac n cheese pizza, but they should) where we met more dumbass fans that obviously didn’t watch the game, or know anything about hockey. One guy told me that I should go home before the Badgers blank the Bulldogs again. I was quick to tell him that the Bulldogs scored first, which he replied “whatever, you still suck.” Is there something in the water that removes all logic and thought from Badger fan’s brains? [Hah! The same thing happened to me! tUMD had a delayed penalty and pulled the goalie and this girl started screaming. I explained the rule kindly and she yelled back "Well, you're still losing!" Well I'd rather see tUMD lose every once in awhile than be a brainless jersey chaser.] We decided to make it a short night, go home and play some Rock Band, and make Saturday night the night we hit the town hard.
Saturday Night – Beer, Heart Attack, Beer. In that order.
On Saturday we made our way over to the New Glarus Brewery about 30 minutes outside of Madison. They make the famed Spotted Cow wheat beer and Fat Squirrel nut brown ale that you can only find in Wisconsin. The tour wasn’t that great, but the beer is amazing. They need to distribute to Minnesota because I can’t keep making runs to Hudson for this stuff [Word. Who wants to go there?]. After sampling their brew and buying 5 cases of beer to bring back with us we made our way back to the Red Shed for redemption. [I was confused. I was thinking of Fred's Red Shed! Yay!]
In the first, I had what I can only speculate to be the first heart attack of my young life. Al played the puck but centered it to Gorowsky, while another Badger gave a pretty decent body check to Stalock. Gorowsky missed the net entirely, wide right from about 15 feet out. The refs even had to do a replay just to be sure it didn’t go through a hole in the net. Apparently they couldn’t believe that a
player could be that bad; Gorowsky proved them wrong. Al played solid the rest of the night, including a great toe save after making 3 others just before it. The game got chippy in the second, with both teams playing some great defensive hockey. I have to give credit to Wisconsin for blocking as many shots as they did. Our powerplay was stifled the whole night because they never moved the box, they just stayed in position and let us move around them, but when we tried to make a move they closed in. It was a great penalty kill against a mediocre powerplay. [I have issues with who is on what power play but that is for another day.]
The third period started with some controversy. Sharp lined up with Geoffrion to take the draw, but Geoffrion made a move and Sharp tried to sweep his feet out, both players threw their hands up but the ref threw Geoffrion out. He lined up on the left wing against Kemp, but made a move in before the puck dropped. That got him an unsportsmanlike penalty which was met by a sea of boos from the Kohl Center. It didn’t matter, because our powerplay was atrocious all weekend. The Dogs finally scored when J-Con (there he is again) [Check] made a great play in the Wisconsin end by forcing the turnover, cutting in, and hitting Fulton with a great saucer pass right on the stick. [Eee!] All Fulton had to do was tap it in and it was 1-0 Dogs. After that goal, it was all defense for Duluth. They only used one forechecker, and really played good defensive hockey, especially during the last 3 minutes of the game. Stalock hung up the goose egg on the Sea of Lenin, and our boys took 2 points on the road.
After the game we made an appearance back at the Echo Tap since they were so cool the night before. The same two bartenders were working, only this time we got them “pity shots.” After a few rounds, I made my way behind the bar and even started pouring Jag for the two of them (pretty sure some of the football players that were there were ready to kick my [badonkadonk] for going behind the bar but let it go once they realized that the other bartender told me to.) We then went over to Waldo’s to get some fishbowls. The crowd at Waldo’s are basically all drunk undergrads who have no clue about anything outside their little world. Some of them had the deer in headlights look when I came up the stairs with a Bulldog jersey on. Strangers from the outside world, my parents warned me about this… A d-bag who was waiting in line to go to the next level of the club started talking trash. Let me say that again, this guy was waiting in line to go to another level of the bar he was already in, and was leaning over talking [feces]. My buddy pointed that out to him and the bouncer watching the door laughed so hard at it that he even gave my buddy a high five. Burn. Maybe I’m getting old and like quieter places with good beer, maybe the fish bowl had way too much alcohol in it for one person [I always thought fishbowls were pretty light on the booze; there was this bar called R and Rs at the U of I and I drank a whole one myself and nothing horrible happened. Maybe I'm just a sad sad drunk], or maybe I just don’t like amateur night at the local frat bar, but Waldo’s made me want to fight everyone I saw. [I feel like that pretty much constantly.] At closing time we left our remaining fishbowls with a very confused Asian guy and his date and made our way home. I remember thinking to myself as I fell asleep that road trips are the greatest thing about sports. [Eee! Houghton soon!]
- Our powerplay has to get better. Wisconsin played a great PK, but 0-8 is simply unacceptable. [Unless you're from St. Cloud!!!]
- Sandelin used Kishel on Friday night, and Lamb on Saturday. Lamb looked much more in control and confident than Kishel. [I heart Super Sexy Shirtless Brady Lamb!]
- I am amazed at the speed of Cascalenda, only noticed him once or twice but when I did I was like “Who is that speedster?”
- Palm needs to learn how to handle a bouncing/fast puck. Soft hands, get out the eggs.
- Gergen still doesn’t realize there are teammates out there with him. The only time he passed the puck in the offensive zone was when he had no other option but pass, and it was a terrible one.
- Solid games from Sharp, Akins [What??? I love you Drew, but OMFG your penalty], and Fulton. Kemp is one of the most underrated players on our team in my opinion.
- Andrew Carroll should have a monument put up in remembrance of his work ethic.
- The student section at Wisconsin just plain sucks. The only original cheer they had was “where’s your water bottle” toward Stalock. How is supposed to get a guy off his game? You’re so good you don’t need water during the game, you suck!
- Fontaine is his usual fast self; I was impressed by his puck work through 2 and sometimes 3 Badgers.
- J-Con [check] was the same way but needs more size to him [What are we supposed to do? Tie his arms and legs to a team of horses and let them pull? Don't think JMay hasn't thought of it] or learn to duck the bigger hits. M-Con had an off weekend and really looked small compared to the Badgers when he was in the corners.
- Shane Connelly has a superman logo on his helmet. What a tool.
Next weekend is critical for the Dogs. They need at least 2 points but a stick salute would be better. [Me likey!] Good luck and go Dogs!