The first half of the 2011 Minnesota hockey season is in the rear view mirror with the Gophers having a 14-5-1 record (11-3-0 in WCHA play). Minnesota is 3-2-1 in non-conference games and that’s what this weekend is all about. It’s time for a Mariucci Classic edition of Inside the Numbers. Enjoy the veal…
2: The number of games that Minnesota and Niagara have played against one another. The Gophers have not seen the Purple Eagles since January 6th-7th, 2006. Minnesota won both games in the series 5-2 and 7-1 in Minneapolis.
1: Jake Hansen is one of four current Golden Gophers to have experience versus any of the other three teams in the 2011 tournament, and he has one point to show for it—an assist.
24: Minnesota’s 24-97 power play efficiency rate ranks sixth in the country at 24.7%.
28: Minnesota’s Kyle Rau and Nick Bjugstad are in Canada at the World Junior Championships playing for Team USA. The twosome do account for twenty-eight of Minnesota’s eighty-three goals (33.7%).
12: Niagara sophomore forward Scott Arnold leads the Purple Eagles with twelve points, on seven goals and five assists (7-5-12) while fellow sophomore Patrick Divjak leads the team with seven assists.
9: Minnesota has faced the Princeton Tigers nine times, but you have to go back to January 2nd-3rd, 1982 for the last time Minnesota swept Princeton in a home series. Princeton beat the Gophers in 1998 in the Mariucci Classic semifinals before winning the tournament over Boston University that year. That Princeton loss in 1998 marked the last Gopher loss to an Ivy League opponent.
5: Princeton junior defenseman Michael Sdao has five goals and four assists while sophomore forward Andrew Calof has four goals and five assists. Last I checked, five plus four equals nine total points.
1963: Going back to the early sixties’, and in this example the year is 1963, Minnesota has an 8-4-0 record against Northeastern. The home team has won every meeting between the schools except for one.
1998-99: In the 1999 Mariucci Classic, Northeastern defeated Minnesota to claim the championship by a 4-1 score. The teams would not meet again until January 3rd, 2009 when Minnesota returned the favor in a 3-2 overtime game to win their own holiday tournament.
16: Northeastern’s Steve Quailer leads the Huskies in points with sixteen on six goals and ten assists (6-10-16), and freshman Ludwig Karlsson is next with fourteen points on six goals and eight assists (6-8-14).
Geoff Discher is lodeplus.com’s Minnesota Golden Gophers Hockey Examiner as well as the National College Hockey Examiner. Leave a comment below, or feel free to reach him at Disch61@hotmail.comwith comments, story ideas, or any general talk surrounding college hockey. You can find him on Facebook as well by clicking hereas well as hereand joining the conversation from the social media side as well. He’s always chock full of fact and opinion. I’m also on Twitter @GophHkyExmnr. Check it out!
Until next time, I’ll see you at the rink!