Jan 282017
 

So close, yet again, against Michigan Tech.

The Chargers were 2:19 away from their first-ever victory over the Huskies, but Jake Lucchini’s goal with 11.4 seconds left in regulation forced a 4-4 tie Saturday night at the Von Braun Center.

BOX SCORE

Michigan Tech (16-9-7 overall, 13-3-6 WCHA) earned the second point in the WCHA standings after a nine-round shootout. The Huskies drew within four points of first-place Bemidji State in the standings.

UAH (7-18-3 overall, 7-12-3 WCHA) snapped a five-game WCHA point-less streak, but the Chargers still haven’t won since Dec. 10. UAH is now 0-12-2 all-time against Michigan Tech, with both ties coming this season.

The Chargers had three leads in the contest, including a 2-0 lead after the first period, and a 4-3 lead after Matt Salhany beat MTU goaltender Angus Redmond high from the left circle with 2:19 to go.

With the point, UAH holds the eighth and final WCHA playoff spot, five points clear of Alaska Anchorage and Northern Michigan, with six games remaining. The Chargers sit three points out of seventh place behind Alaska, whom UAH visits in Fairbanks next weekend.

UAH came out with the best period its ever had against Michigan Tech, getting plenty of scoring opportunities not normally gotten against the Huskies, and capitalizing with two goals.

The first game at 3:54, while the Chargers were shorthanded from a Brent Fletcher interference penalty. Hans Gorowsky pucked up a lose puck at the MTU blue line, took it up the right side, and curved toward the net.  He deked goaltender Angus Redmond and scored his sixth goal of the season.

Then with 11:39 left, UAH got a goal on the power play after Gavin Gould was called for tripping. Kurt Gosselin, returning to lineup after serving a game disqualification on Friday, one-timed a Brandon Parker pass from the right point for his team-leading goal of the season. Parker’s helper was his seventh of the season, and Austin Beaulieu also assisted.

The Chargers kept the same pace for the first few minutes of the second, but Tech asserted itself and took the shots lead.

Connor James went off for elbowing for his third penalty of the series, and Michigan Tech capitalized. A Matt Roy shot was nearly stopped by UAH goaltender Jordan Uhelski, but the puck appeared to squeeze under his arm and in the net with 10:34 left of the second to cut the Chargers’ lead to 2-1.

The Huskies had numerous chances for the equalizer as the second period closed during another power play from a Brennan Saulnier holding call. They had four shots on goal, including a Uhelski glove save on Jake Lucchini just before the buzzer.

Then came a frantic third period which featured five goals and five penalties.

Michigan Tech tied the game at the 6:30 mark, as Matt Roy notched his second goal of the game.

Two interference penalties following a UAH holding call gave the Chargers a 4-on-3 power play, and UAH retook the lead on an odd bounce.

Brennan Saulnier’s shot went over the net, bounced off the glass, and off Redmond’s back and in. With 9:20 to go in regulation, UAH had a 3-2 lead on Saulnier’s third goal of the season, assisted by Gosselin and Parker.

Just 37 seconds later, MTU tied it up 3-3. Mitch Reinke’s shot from near the left circle bounced off Uhelski’s pad and in.

Then game Salhany’s goal for the 4-3 Charger lead with 2:19 left, a snipe from the left circle that just got under the crossbar.

Lucchini’s tying goal with 11.4 seconds remaining came with the extra attacker.

The Huskies outshot UAH 4-1 in the regulation overtime 3-1 as they continued their relentless pressure, but Uhelski came up big, including a glove save on a Reid Sturos blast with 3:24 to go.

With no scoring, the game officially became a 4-4 tie. In the 3-on-3 overtime to determine which team would get the extra WCHA point, there was no scoring, but numerous 2-on-1 chances on both sides, with Uhelski and Redmond coming up big.

Both goaltenders continued strong play to extend the sudden-death shootout, which was the first for UAH in the WCHA. The Chargers used Josh Kestner, Gosselin, Brandon Salerno, Jordan Larson, Hans Gorowsky, Tyler Poulsen, Saulnier, James, and Salhany.

Chris Gerrie finally beat Uhelski in the ninth round, and Salhany was stopped by Redmond to end it.

Uhelski made 31 saves as the Huskies outshot the Chargers 35-23.

The Chargers return to the VBC in two weeks to host Bemidji State.

Jan 272017
 

The Chargers have yet to solve Michigan Tech, and Friday never seemed like it was going to be the night.

UAH lost 5-2 to the Huskies at the Von Braun Center, falling to 0-12-1 all-time against Michigan Tech. Of more urgent matters is the Chargers’ losing streak, now at seven games overall and five in the WCHA. UAH is now 7-18-2 overall and 7-12-2 in conference play.

BOX SCORE

Outside of a mini rally for the Chargers, Michigan Tech (16-9-6 overall, 14-3-5 WCHA) had this game from start to finish to extend its unbeaten streak to seven games. The Huskies outshot a depleted UAH club by a 41-17 margin as they climbed to within six points of first-place Bemidji State in the WCHA standings.

With Kurt Gosselin, Cam Knight, and Brennan Saulnier having to sit out for getting game disqualifications last Saturday at Lake Superior State, coach Mike Corbett had to jumble the lineup. Defenseman Connor James played in his second game this season, Jetlan Houcher saw his first action since Dec. 3, and Hunter Anderson, normally a right wing, played defenseman.

Perhaps the surprise was who UAH put in net: Matt Larose got the start, getting his first action since the Chargers’ home opener on Oct. 21.

Tech took the early lead as Mitch Reinke blasted a one-timer from the left point, beating Larose at 6:02 of the first.

The Huskies make it a 2-0 when, after a Charger turnover in their own zone, Thomas Beretta’s shot hit Cody Marooney’s shin guard and Larose’s pad and in at 9:03.

The Huskies continued to dominate puck possession in the second period, and the Chargers didn’t get their first shot on goal until about seven minutes left in the frame.

It would be UAH’s only shot on goal for the period, despite having two power plays. The second power play ended up being a disaster: Tech mounted a 2-on-1 break, with Michael Neville feeding Reid Sturos, who scored shorthanded with :35 seconds left.

Michigan Tech had a 3-0 lead and a 27-7 shots advantage after two periods.

MTU scored its fourth goal on the power play. On an initial shot by Matt Roy led to a scramble in front, the rebound squirted out to a waiting Gavin Gould, who buried it with 12:02 left.

Twenty-one seconds later, No. 21 finally delivered UAH’s first goal. Tyler Poulsen’s first goal of the season cut the Huskies’ lead to 4-1, assisted by Madison Dunn and Max McHugh.

By that point the Chargers finally had some momentum, and with 5:20 to go, Jordan Larson found a rebound of his own off a Brandon Parker shot, poking it past a down a suddenly busy Tech goalie Angus Redmond to make it 4-2.

A Beretta holding call with 1:58 to go gave UAH the power play, and with Larose pulled for an extra attacker the Chargers had a 6-on-4 attack. However, Reid Sturos intercepted a pass from center ice and quickly shot it into an open net with 1:19 left for the 5-2 final.

With two Friday night, the Chargers have allowed eight shorthanded goals this season.

Larose finished with 36 saves on 40 shots. Redmond had 15 saves for the Huskies.

Game two of the series is 7 p.m. Saturday night at the VBC.

Three stars of the game

1. Gavin Gould, MTU (1 goal, 2 assists)
2. Reid Sturos, MTU (2 goals)
3. Jordan Larson, UAH (1 goal)

Wolitski donates $500,000 to program

The UAH hockey program received a major pledge on Friday. Sheldon Wolitski, former UAH defenseman from the 1996 NCAA Division II championship team and CEO of The Select Group, announced a $500,000 donation for equipment, travel, recruiting, nutrition, and fitness. TSG will also open a new location in Huntsville, managed by former Charger star and pro player Jared Ross. An additional $10,000 will go toward the establishment of the Doug Ross Suite, named for the longtime UAH hockey coach, at Spragins Hall.

Jan 212017
 

The Chargers are slumping, now even on the road.

Lake Superior scored three unanswered goals to beat UAH 4-1 on Saturday for a series sweep in Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan.

UAH (7-17-2 overall, 7-11-2 WCHA) has lost four straight conference games and six straight overall, dropping the Chargers to eighth place in the league standings with eight games to go.

BOX SCORE

UAH had won four straight road games and was 6-1-1 in WCHA away contests coming into the weekend.

It won’t get easier when second-place Michigan Tech visits Huntsville next week. After fights broke out after the final whistle, UAH’s Kurt Gosselin, Brennan Saulnier, and Cam Knight each got game disqualifications and will miss Friday’s game against the Huskies.

Lake Superior (11-12-3, 8-9-3), who moved into fifth place, won all four games against the Chargers this season. LSSU’s Diego Cuglietta and Gus Correale each had fighting and game disqualification penalties.

The Chargers pelted LSSU goaltender Gordon Defiel with 15 shots on goal in the third period on Friday, and they continued peppering him in the first on Saturday.

UAH had 19 shots on net — a season high for a period this season, but this time, Defiel was able to get a piece of all of them. The Chargers also had the benefit of a four-minute Charger power play prompted Josh Nenedal, who interfered with Regan Soquila and then roughed Brent Fletcher after the whistle.

Lake Superior only had nine shots on goal in the first, but one did get past Carmine Guerriero. Colin Saccoman followed up on a rebound on Luke Morgan’s shot to score.

UAH tied the game up at 1-1 at 6:36 of the second, when Brandon Salerno powered a low wrister from the slot. His third goal of the season was helped by Josh Kestner 12th assist and Cam Knight’s 13th.

The Chargers almost took their first lead of the season shortly thereafter, when Max McHugh’s backhand on an open net was gloved by a diving Defiel.

Lake Superior regained the lead at 2-1 on Gage Torrel’s goal with 3:19 left in the second, coming during a short Laker power play.

LSSU nearly made it 3-1 when Cuglietta was awarded a penalty shot late in the second after Cody Champagne hooked him. However, Guerriero was able to make the top to keep it a one-goal game at the second intermission.

LSSU actually did make it 3-1 when James Roll drove to the net and beat Guerriero with 12:26 left.

The Lakers were given a gift power play when Brennan Saulnier was given an interference penalty for a clean check on Bryan Basilico. LSSU converted for a 4-1 lead with 8:50 to go, when Max Humitz scored his team-leading 12th goal on a deflection from the high slot.

UAH outshot LSSU 35-29, but was 0-for-5 on the power play. Defiel finished with 34 saves to Guerriero’s 25.

Jan 202017
 

The Chargers came back from a 3-0 deficit and had a blistering third period, but Lake Superior State came away with a 5-4 victory Friday in Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan.

UAH (7-16-2 overall, 7-10-2 WCHA) had two goals early in the third to tie the game at 4-4, but the Chargers, who have lost five straight games overall, saw their program-record-tying four-game road win streak snapped.

BOX SCORE

Mitch Hults scored the game-winning goal for Lake Superior (10-12-3, 7-9-3) with 6:50 left in regulation, his second goal of the game.

Through the first half, the Lakers took command of the game.

 

UAH outshot the Lakers 8-7 in the first period, but the Lakers scored first as the Chargers allowed their sixth shorthanded goal of the season.

While on the power play, the Chargers had a giveaway in the neutral zone. Diego Cuglietta went up the left side, centered it to Gus Correale, who popped it over UAH goaltender Jordan Uhelski at the 8:30 mark.

The scoring picked up in the second period, with Lake Superior dominating the first half of the frame.

LSSU took a 2-0 lead as Mitch Hults, from the right doorstep, deposited the puck around Uhelski’s right side at the 7:36 mark.

The Lakers made it 3-0 just 1:23 later, as a JT Henke beat Uhelski with a one-timer from the right circle. LSSU had a 9-1 shots advantage at that point, and it didn’t help that UAH committed four icings in that stretch.

UAH got on the board with 8:31 left in the second. Hunter Anderson stole the puck in the Laker end. His initial shot rebounded left to Brandon Salerno, who pitched it back to the Laker net. The puck bounced off Anderson’s stick to a charging Josh Kestner, who had an open net for this seventh goal of the season.

Video review confirmed the goal after the Lakers protested that Anderson had interfered with LSSU goalie Gordon Defiel.

It looked like UAH would take the momentum going into the second intermission, as Kurt Gosselin beat Defiel five-hole with 49.6 seconds left to cut LSSU’s lead to 3-2. Cam Knight got the assist.

However, the Lakers bounced right back and regained their two-goal lead 18.8 seconds later as Henke scored his second goal of the game.

UAH substituted Uhelski, who finished with 15 saves, with Carmine Guerriero to start the third. The Chargers then came out firing, and didn’t take long to make it even.

Just 1:06 in, Brent Fletcher gloved a high puck, played it in front of the Laker net, and deked Defiel to notch his second goal of the season. The UAH captain was assisted by Gosselin and Knight to make it a one-goal game.

Matt Salhany had a chance to tie it even when UAH was shorthanded, but Defiel came out to knock the puck away from him.

But Defiel could not stop a blast from Brandon Parker from just inside the blue line with 12:06 to go. Parker’s seventh goal of the season tied the game at 4-4.

Then Hults got the game winner, a wrister from the right circle dot that beat Guerriero high.

UAH pulled Guerriero for the extra attacker over the final 1:49, but Defiel made the last of his 29 saves down the stretch to hold on for the victory.

The Chargers outshot the Lakers 15-5 in the third period and 33-24 for the game.

Game two of the series is Saturday night at 6:07 p.m. Central Time. It can be seen online with a WCHA.tv subscription.

 

 

 

Jan 082017
 

The Chargers scored two third-period goals, but No. 19 Minnesota State held on for a 3-2 win Saturday at the Von Braun Center to compete a two-game sweep.

UAH (7-15-2 overall, 7-9-2 WCHA) rallied from a 3-0 deficit, and had a major power play opportunity in the third period, but could not get the equalizer and avoid its fourth straight defeat.

BOX SCORE

Minnesota State (13-7-2, 9-5-2) moved into a tie with Bowling Green for third place in the WCHA. UAH now sits in fifth.

The Mavericks scored two goals in the first with tallies from Ian Scheid and Zach Stepan. Stepan, a Nashville Predators prospect, scored again in the second to give MSU a 3-0 lead.

UAH got on the board for the first time in the series as Max McHugh scored his eighth goal of the season, beating MSU goaltender Aaron Nelson in front of the crease. Brennan Saulnier had his eighth assist of the year.

Less than a minute later, Hans Gorowsky scored UAH’s second goal, driving to the net and poking the puck past Nelson for his fifth goal of the season. Brandon Salerno and Sean Rappleyea got the assists.

UAH goaltender Carmine Guerriero made 22 saves.

The Chargers are off next week before heading to Lake Superior State on Jan. 20-21. UAH’s next home series is Jan 27-28 against Michigan Tech.