Series Preview: at Alaska Anchorage, Jan. 29-30

Friday, Jan. 29, 2016 – 10:07 p.m.
Saturday, Jan. 30, 2016 – 10:07 p.m.
Team statistics: UAH | Alaska Anchorage

If the Chargers want to return to the WCHA playoffs, they will have to show it this weekend.

With 10 games to go, UAH is five points behind the eighth and final WCHA playoff spot, which is currently tied by Alaska Anchorage and Alaska. The Chargers travel to Anchorage to face the Seawolves this weekend in a series where they can’t afford to lose any ground. (Alaska is at Wisconsin in a non-conference series.)

Game time in Anchorage on Friday and Saturday night is 10:07 p.m. Central Time.

Matchup history: To gain ground on the Seawolves, the Chargers will have to win in Anchorage for the first time ever. UAH is 0-13 all-time against UAA in Anchorage dating back to its first visit in 1987. UAA leads the all-time series 19-4-2, including a 4-2-2 mark since UAH joined the WCHA in 2013. Back in October in Huntsville, the Seawolves and Chargers tied 3-3 before UAA took the second game 3-2.

Charger recap: UAH (5-16-3 overall, 3-12-3 WCHA) was idle last week after getting a tie and a loss at Ferris State two weeks ago.

On Friday, Jan. 15, Max McHugh tied the game up at 1-1 in the second period. Ferris State retook the lead early in the third before UAH stormed ahead 3-2 on goals by Matt Salhany and Tyler Poulsen. However, the Bulldogs forced over time on a Kenny Babinksi goal with 1:03 remaining in regulation. No scoring in overtime meant a 3-3 draw. Matt Larose needed to stop 46 Ferris State shots, the season high for a Charger goaltender.

On Saturday, Jan. 16, it was Josh Kestner who got the second-period equalizer, but Ferris State scored two in the second and one in the third to pull away and beat UAH 4-1. Carmine Guerriero make 34 saves.

In the first period of the second game, Brennan Saulnier received a game misconduct penalty for contact to the head of a Ferris State player. The WCHA has suspended Saulnier for the Anchorage series.

McHugh is tied for sixth in the WCHA in points with 20, and third for third in assists with 14. Chad Brears is tied for eighth in goals with nine.

Larose has a 1.51 goals against average and .957 save percentage in his last three starts, averaging 36.3 saves per game. He is fourth in the league in save percentage at .927.

LEADING SCORERS: Max McHugh (So., 6-14–20, 24 GP), Chad Brears (Sr., 9-8–17, 22 GP), Brennan Saulnier (So., 6-10–16, 22 GP), Brandon Parker (So., 2-6–8, 24 GP), Kurt Gosselin (Fr., 2-6–8, 19 GP)

GOALTENDING: Carmine Guerriero (Jr., 3.10 GAA, .903 SV%, 16 GP), Matt Larose (Jr., 2.28 GAA, .927 SV%, 9 GP)

UAH Tale of the tape
(WCHA rank)
Ferris State
5-16-3 Overall record 9-12-3
3-12-3 (10th) WCHA record 6-10-2 (T-8th)
2.21 (9th) Goals/game 2.42 (T-7th)
3.08 (T-9th) Goals allowed/game 3.08 (T-9th)
14.2 (2nd) Pen. minutes/game 14.0 (3rd)
11.8% (9th) Power play 11.5% (10th)
85.3% (3rd) Penalty kill 80.2% (9th)

About the Seawolves: Alaska Anchorage (9-12-3 overall, 6-10-2 WCHA) has lost six of its last eight games. Last week, the Seawolves were swept at Bowling Green by a pair of 6-2 scores. They haven’t won at home since Nov. 15.

Senior Blake Tatchell and sophomore Ted Kozun continue to lead the Seawolves in scoring. Tatchell has 18 points (5 goals, 13 assists, tied for seventh in the WCHA), while Kozun tops the team in goals with 10 (tied for fifth in the WCHA).

Olivier Mantha is UAA’s top goaltender, sporting a .906 save percentage and 2.90 goals against average in 22 starts.

LEADING SCORERS: Blake Tatchell (Sr., 5-13–18, 24 GP), Ted Kozun (So., 10-5–15, 24 GP), Matt Anholt (So., 4-9–13, 24 GP), Mason Mitchell (Fr., 3-9–12, 19 GP), Austin Azurdia (So., 2-9–11, 23 GP)

GOALTENDING: Olivier Mantha (So., 2.90 GAA, .906 SV%, 22 GP), Jared D’Amico (So., 2.85 GAA, .903 SV%, 4 GP)

Around the WCHA: 

All times Central. Games featuring WCHA teams at home can be seen on

Friday, Jan. 29
UAH at Alaska Anchorage, 10:07 p.m.
#17 Michigan Tech at #18 Bowling Green, 6:07 p.m.
Minnesota Duluth at Northern Michigan, 6:07 p.m.
Alaska at Wisconsin, 7 p.m.

Saturday, Jan. 30
UAH at Alaska Anchorage, 10:07 p.m.
#17 Michigan Tech at #18 Bowling Green, 6:07 p.m.
#19 Minnesota State vs. #3 St. Cloud State, 1 p.m. (North Star College Cup at St. Paul, Minn.)
Bemidji State vs. #20 Minnesota, 4 p.m. (North Star College Cup at St. Paul, Minn.)
Minnesota Duluth at Northern Michigan, 6:07 p.m.
Alaska at Wisconsin, 7 p.m.

Sunday, Jan. 31
North Star College Cup third-place game, 1 p.m.
North Star College Cup championship, 4 p.m.