Jun 292015
 
Cam Talbot

Cam Talbot has been traded to the Edmonton Oilers. (Photo by David Washburn)

Moving from the Big Apple to the City of Champions, Cam Talbot will get his chance to be a No. 1 starter in the NHL.

The former charger goaltender was traded by the New York Rangers to the Edmonton Oilers on Saturday, during the second round of the NHL Draft. The Rangers, which also sent Edmonton the 209th selection (28th pick of the seventh round), received three picks from the Oilers: No. 57 (second round), No. 79 (third), and No. 184 (seventh).

Talbot played in 36 regular-season games for the Rangers last season, but really showed his worth as New York’s top goaltender while filling in for the injured Henrik Lundqvist in February and March. Talbot posted a 2.21 goals against average and a .926 save percent, both ranking fourth in the NHL. He did not see any playoff action while Lundqvist and the Rangers reached the Eastern Conference final.

The Oilers are rebuilding as the finished with the second-worst record in the Western Conference last season. Talbot should help between the pipes after Edmonton finished last in the NHL with an .888 save percentage and 3.37 goals allowed per game.

Talbot will be reunited with another UAH alumnus in Edmonton. Jay Woodcroft (’00), a member of the 1998 NCAA Division II national champions and who recently was on the San Jose Sharks’ coaching staff, was named an assistant coach with the Oilers on Thursday.

Talbot tweeted about the trade on Sunday:

Briere joining Leafs’ staff: Steve Briere, who was a goaltender for the Chargers from 1997-2000, was named the goaltending coach of the Toronto Maple Leafs.

In 45 games for UAH, Briere posted a 2.81 goals against average, fourth on the Chargers’ all-time list. His .900 save percentage is seventh all-time. Briere was named second-team All-College Hockey America in the 1999-2000 season, and as a backup played 12 games for the 1998 NCAA Division II national champions.

Briere was an assistant on the UAH staff when the Chargers won the 2007 CHA championship. He is the owner and head instructor of Canadian Professional Goalie Schools.

New play-by-play announcer: Zachary Bryan will be the voice of the hockey Chargers on WCHA.tv this coming season.

Bryan was the play-by-play announcer for Vanderbilt’s club team for the last two seasons in coordination with Penalty Box Radio. He is the news director at WAKM-AM radio in Franklin, Tenn.

Danton Cole to coach U.S. juniors: USA Hockey on June 17 announced that former UAH coach Danton Cole is on the coaching staff for the U.S. National Junior Team that will compete in the 2016 World Junior Championship in Helsinki, Finland. Cole, Chris Chelios, and Kevin Reiter will assist head coach Ron Wilson.

Cole was the Chargers’ head coach from 2007-10, leading UAH to the College Hockey America tournament title and an NCAA tournament berth in 2010. He has been with USA Hockey for five years, leading the U.S. Under-18 Team to gold medals in the U-18 World Championships in 2012 and 2014.

Jun 232015
 

It is with deep sadness that we must pass along the news that Colby Ross has died.  Colby was the third of the four Ross children.  Our hearts are with his father, Doug, his mother, Barbara Ebert, his sister Lindsay, his brother Jared, and his brother Garrett.  It is impossible to overstate the role that the Ross family has played in hockey in Huntsville, and it’s similarly impossible to overstate the sense of loss for his family.

UAH alumni Todd and Kellie Bentley have put together a GoFundMe project to create a college fund for Colby’s daughter, Darby.  We encourage you to consider donating.

 

Jun 022015
 

From heavy.com’s 5 Fast Facts about Adam Setas, Nick Saban’s new son-in-law:

Setas played hockey throughout his childhood and at Lansing Catholic High School before committing to play at UA Huntsville in 2009. From 2009-2012 Setas play for UA Huntsville before transferring to the University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa for his senior year. UA Tuscaloosa does not have a varsity hockey team.

Except if you look at that EliteProspects link, you see him playing at UA in ACHA III and not UAH in NCAA Div-I:

Adam Setas at EliteProspects.com

Adam Setas at EliteProspects.com

Oh, and if you look at the all-time roster for UAH hockey, there is no “Adam Setas” between Paul Scott (’90, 10-23—33) and Grant Selinger (’07, 33-37—70).

Congratulations and best wishes to the Setas and Saban families.

May 182015
 

The program’s biggest summer fundraising event is just three weeks away!

The 2015 UAH Hockey Frenchy Open presented by CNTS Investments LLC and Total Package Hockey will tee off at 1 p.m. on June 6 at Huntsville Country Club.

The tournament layout will be a four-player scramble with prizes going to the top three teams. Raffle and door prizes will be available.

Register online to reserve your spot. Registration per player is $150, which includes 18 holes of golf, a cart, a UAH Hockey polo shirt, refreshments, and dinner. Full four-player teams can register for $600.

Sponsorship opportunities are still available. For more information, can call 256-824-2485 or email Nick Laurila.

In addition, there will be an UAH alumni hockey game at the Wilcoxon Municipal Ice Complex in Huntsville on June 5 at 7 p.m.

“The Frenchy Open” is named after Charger left wing Jean-Marc Plante, who died in 2001. Also known as “Frenchy,” the Laval, Quebec, native played for UAH from 1988-92, scoring 16 goals and 19 assists in 94 games. Plante worked at the front office of the Florida Panthers and became the athletic marketing director at UAH. A memorial scholarship is awarded in his honor to the Charger hockey player who demonstrates leadership, sportsmanship, and team spirit, and who participates in community and university volunteer service.

Schedule change: The Thanksgiving weekend series against rival Bemidji State has been changed to Wednesday, November 25 and Friday, November 27. Puck drop remains at 7:07 p.m. for both games. The change means UAH will avoid going up against the Iron Bowl on Saturday, November 28.

UAH will host its first ever game on a Wednesday. The Chargers have played only four times on Wednesday before, all on the road:

Wednesday, Dec. 12, 1990 at Minnesota (lost 10-0) — A stop in Minneapolis on the way to Alaska.
Wednesday, Dec. 11, 1991 at Alaska-Fairbanks (lost 9-5 but later won by forfeit) — Part of four games in five nights in Alaska
Wednesday, Dec. 30, 1998 at Connecticut (won 3-0) — Holiday tournament right before New Year’s
Wednesday, Nov. 23, 2011 at Merrimack (lost 6-0) — Northeast road trip that also sandwiched Thanksgiving

Brears named Academic All-District: UAH forward Chad Brears was named to the 2014-15 Capital One Academic All District At-Large Team, announced by the College Sports Information Directors of America on Thursday.

The junior from Cold Lake, Alberta, was named to the District 4 first team in NCAA Division I covering Alabama, Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, and Puerto Rico.

Brears scored a 4.0 grade-point average majoring in mechanical engineering this year. He was second on the Chargers this past season with 15 points (three goals and 12 assists) in 36 games.

May 042015
 
It's good to be home. (Photo by Chris Brightwell)

It’s good to be home, where UAH will play 18 times in the 2015-16 season. (Photo by Chris Brightwell)

For the first time in 15 years, UAH is scheduled to play more home games than not.

The WCHA released its 2015-16 composite schedule on Monday, and UAH followed with the official revealing of the Chargers’ slate.

The Chargers will have 18 home games for the first time since the 2000-01 season, when UAH hosted the College Hockey America conference tournament. In terms of regular season, it’s the most home games in UAH’s modern Division I era, and the most home games against Division I teams ever. This is an exciting development given the difficulty UAH has securing home non-conference games (see UAH’s recent independent years).

In addition to the 28-game WCHA schedule, UAH will have three non-conference series, two at home, representing Hockey East and the National Collegiate Hockey Conference.

UAH opens the season at home for the first time since 2012 with the first of three non-conference series, Oct. 9-10 against Connecticut. UConn last came to Huntsville as a member of Atlantic Hockey to open the Chargers’ 2003-04 season, but now the Huskies represent Hockey East. UConn was expected to struggle transitioning to the East’s premier conference in its first season in 2014-15, but finished in a tie for ninth and look to be a program on the rise.

Homecoming at hockey is back as the Chargers open league play at home against Alaska-Anchorage on Oct. 23-24. UAH won both games against UAA in Huntsville last season as the Seawolves struggled to last place in the WCHA.

The Chargers hit the road for the first time at Lake Superior State, where they earned three critical points last season on the way to a WCHA playoff spot. UAH then hosts their playoff opponent from last season, Michigan Tech, on Nov. 6-7. Tech, one of three opponents who reached the NCAA tournament last season, swept the Chargers in Houghton in two games, the first being the 1-0 triple overtime marathon that saw Carmine Guerriero make 76 saves.

Bemidji State returns to Huntsville for rounds 77 of 78 of the Chargers-Beavers rivalry on Thanksgiving weekend. Rounds 79 and 80 will be in Bemidji on Feb. 26-27.

On Dec. 18-19, Colorado College comes to Huntsville after the Chargers visited Colorado Springs to open the 2014-15 campaign. The Tigers finished last in the powerful NCHC, but managed two one-goal wins over UAH, both on third-period goals.

The Chargers ring in 2016 at one of the storied programs in college hockey. UAH visits North Dakota for the first time since 1989, when the Chargers lost 12-6 and 11-5. UND, owners of seven national championships, won the NCHC regular season title and reached the Frozen Four last month.

All but six of the Chargers’ home games come before the New Year, meaning UAH will see a lot of travel down the stretch. UAH has only one series in January, February, and March. The Charges host Alaska on Jan. 8-9, defending WCHA champion and NCAA tournament participant Minnesota State on Feb. 12-13, and Bowling Green on March 4-5 to finish the regular season.

The Chargers go to the state of Alaska once, a late-January set in Anchorage.

Season ticket and Blue Line Club information will be released over the summer. For more information, call 256-UAH-PUCK.

Here is the 2015-16 UAH Charger hockey schedule. Home games are in bold, all starting at 7:07 p.m.

Oct. 9-10 – Connecticut
Oct. 23-24 – Alaska Anchorage*
Oct. 30-31 – Lake Superior State*
Nov. 6-7 – Michigan Tech*
Nov. 20-21 – Bowling Green*
Nov. 27-28 – Bemidji State*
Dec. 4-5 – Northern Michigan*
Dec. 11-12 – Minnesota State*
Dec. 18-19 – Colorado College
Jan. 1-2 – North Dakota
Jan. 8-9 – Alaska*
Jan. 15-16 – Ferris State*
Jan. 29-30 – Alaska Anchorage*
Feb. 12-13 – Minnesota State*
Feb. 19-20 – Northern Michigan*
Feb. 26-27 – Bemidji State*
March 4-5 – Bowling Green*

March 11-13 – WCHA Quarterfinals (at top four seeds)
March 18-19 – WCHA Final Five (Grand Rapids, Mich.)
March 25-27 – NCAA Tournament Regionals
April 7-9 – NCAA Frozen Four (Tampa, Fla.)

* WCHA game.