Wednesday, April 12, 2017

BLOG: News & Notes You & I May Have Missed

I spent this past week in Chicago covering the Frozen Four for SB Nation. While that didn't stop me from being able to put up a couple stories on players leaving and decommitting, a few pieces of news slipped through the blog.

This post is to quickly catch up on any news you may have missed.

In addition, I will also get to continuing the "What's Next" series later this week.

Tyler Sheehy named first team All-American

Mariucci Arena's mural depicting All-Americans will get another addition. Sophomore Tyler Sheehy was named a first team All-American by the American Hockey Coaches Association.

Sheehy, the Big Ten conference player of the year, finished the season with 20 goals and 33 assists in 38 games. His 53 points were the most by a Gopher since Ryan Potulny in 2006.

Other first team All-Americans out West are UMD forward Alex Iafallo, Bemidji State goaltender Michael Bitzer, North Dakota defenseman Tucker Poolman (East Grand Forks, MN native) and a pair of players from national champion Denver in defenseman Will Butcher and forward Henrik Borgstrom.

Six Gophers win gold medals at World Championships

Team USA took home the gold medal (on top of winning a new contract package after threatening to boycott) for the seventh time in eight World Championships last week, defeating Canada 3-2 in overtime.

Six Gophers - Hannah Brandt, Megan Bozek, Amanda Kessel, Gigi Marvin, Kelly Pannek and Lee Stecklein - were members of the 2017 squad coached by Minnesota alum and Hobey Baker winner Rob Stauber. (That total goes to eight if you want to include the year both Lamoureuxs played at Minnesota before transferring home to North Dakota.) Kessel finished tied for seventh in the tournament (fourth on Team USA) with 1G-5A in 5 games.

Brandt, meanwhile, scored a go-ahead goal against Finland in the preliminary round.

Marvin to Brandt, who puts it past Noora Raty. About as Gopher-centric as it gets.

Sarah Potomak scores first Hockey Canada goal

It took two tries for Sarah Potomak to get her first career goal with Hockey Canada.

Initially given credit for Canada's fourth goal before a scoring change switched it to an assist, Potomak scored the eighth and final goal in Canada's 8-0 win against Russia.

She finished the tournament with two goals and an assist in five games.

Joined by Minnesota alum Sarah Davis on Team Canada, Potomak was one of two Gophers with eligibility remaining who played in the tournament (Pannek being the other). Potomak finished her sophomore season at Minnesota with 53 points (20G-33A) in 38 games.

Noora Raty, Mira Jalosuo & Finland

With Finland getting the bronze, defeating Germany 8-0, all ten Gophers playing in the World Championships medaled. The Finns had Minnesota alums Noora Raty in net and Mira Jalosuo on its blue line.

While the Canadians defeated Finland in the semifinals, Raty, Jalosuo and company did earlier hand the Canadians its first ever loss in the World Championship to a team other than the US. Raty stopped 35 of 38 shots in the victory.

NHL Central Scouting Final Rankings Released

If you missed this yesterday, incoming Gopher freshman Casey Mittelstadt is the third-highest North American skater in the 2017 NHL Draft. Three other Minnesota commits join him in the top 100.

10 Gophers Among SB Nation College Hockey Top 100 NHL Prospects

My SB Nation College Hockey colleagues Chris Dilks and Jeff Cox annually put together a list of the Top 100 NHL Prospects currently playing college hockey.

Of the 100 prospects, 10 were Gophers. It might say a lot about the end of the year that the top two on the list missed time injured.

32. Ryan Lindgren (Boston Bruins)
34. Tommy Novak (Nashville Predators)
40. Rem Pitlick (Nashville Predators)
74. Tyler Sheehy (Free Agent)
79. Ryan Collins (Columbus Blue Jackets)
86. Steve Johnson (Los Angeles Kings)
89. Brent Gates Jr. (Anaheim Ducks)
91. Justin Kloos (Free Agent/signed by Minnesota)
93. Jack Sadek (Minnesota Wild)
96. Ryan Zuhlsdorf (Tampa Bay Lightning)

Six Gophers going for Stanley Cup

The Stanley Cup playoffs begin tonight with six Minnesota alums playing. Locally the Wild have a pair of former Gophers in Erik Haula and Jordan Schroeder.

Paul Martin, who has made the postseason in each of his 13 seasons, is back with the 2016 Western Conference champion San Jose Sharks.

In the Eastern Conference three teams have Gophers with New York Rangers (Brady Skjei), Presidents Trophy winner Washington (Nate Schmidt) and defending Stanley Cup champion Pittsburgh (Phil Kessel).

Kessel, for what it's worth, scored last weekend in Toronto.
In the words of Doug Woog:

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