|Robbie Russo (Notre Dame)|
The US college games were well worth the price of admission as 2 matchups featured storied US college hockey programs as part of the Big Ten/Hockey East Challenge.
First Star Robbie Russo Notre Dame
Before the season began, I was telling people that Robbie Russo (NYI 2011 4th) needed to have a breakout season offensively in order for 2nd ranked Notre Dame to have a successful first season in the Hockey East. 5 games into the season Notre Dame is 5-0 with Russo after Notre Dame's 3-2 win over Minnesota-Duluth at 2-4-6.
For the 2nd straight game Russo had 2 assists with both being primary assists as the junior defenseman is off to the best start in his Notre Dame career. First Russo set up Jeff Costello for Notre Dame's 1st goal of the game at 10:09 of the 2nd period. 4:29 later with the score tied at 1, Russo set up Mario Lucia for a power play goal at 14:38 giving Notre Dame a 2-1 lead. Russo was on ice for all of the Notre Dame goals as they earn the 3-2 win.
Check out this article on Russo from the Notre Dame website.
|Adam Pelech (OHL Images)|
In 3 seasons Adam Pelech (NYI 2012 3rd) never had a game winning goal or a 9 game scoring streak while with the Erie Otters. A goal in Erie's 5-1 win over the London Knights and Pelech has said streak (4-6-10) as well as 2 game winning goals in his last 8 games. The win not only extends the Otters winning streak to 9 straight games but at 11-2-1-0, the best record in the OHL.
Pelech came in from the point and fired a shot from the high slot at 2:46 of the 2nd period giving Erie a 2-1 lead. Pelech is on a tear but so are the Otters which after years of losing is a welcome sight in Erie. While Hockey Canada is wondering where they are going to find defensemen for their Under-20 team, Pelech is making one heck of a case to be included.
|Taylor Cammarata (Monte Draper/Associated Press)|
Getting a chance to watch 2 of the best hockey programs play each other is great, watching them play an exciting overtime game is a guilty pleasure. It was Taylor Cammarata (NYI 2013 3rd) and his top ranked Minnesota Golden Gophers hosting 5th ranked Boston College as part of the Big Ten/Hockey East Challenge and this one was why college hockey can be so entertaining to watch.
The game's 3rd star Taylor Cammarata scored the game tying goal and almost scored the game winner (which despite the review I question) in overtime. Cammarata's goal was a very nice wrister that Cammarata made look way too easy with his shot delivery. Cammarata clearly has a ton of offensive skill as well as some solid skating skills. In overtime, Cammarata broke in and beat the defense firing a shot that depending on your point of view went in or didn't. The replay review says that it didn't but my biggest question is how come they didn't get the Boston College defenseman for closing his hand on the puck while throwing it?
Sorry from the replays I saw, if the puck did not go in then how do you miss the throwing motion? I do not believe he slapped it as there was too much of a delay before the puck left the crease area. In any event the other thing that needs to be cleared up is the game was an OVERTIME TIE not a Boston College shoot out win. The shootout round was only a practice round designed to help Minnesota get ready for Big Ten play when the shootout will be a part of the game.
Cammarata is now 2-3-5 on the season.
The Rest of the Prospects
Brady Skjei (NYR 2012 1st) registered his 1st point of the season with a secondary assist on Minnesota's 1st goal of the game. Skjei also showed off his skating as while on a penalty kill, Skjei made a play to break up the rush then turned the speed on and almost scored on a breakaway attempt. It would have been nice to see Skjei score but seeing a solid consistent effort was a nice consolation prize.
Islander prospect Jake Bischoff (2012 6th) was a health scratch.
Steven Fogarty (NYR 2011 3rd) did not score in Notre Dame's win but he had 4 shots on the night and was the starting center for Notre Dame.
Victor Crus-Rydberg (NYI 2013 5th) had his 2nd 3 point game as a member of the Plymouth Whalers but it wasn't enough as the Whalers lost to the Owen Sound Attack 6-4. Crus-Rydberg had 2 secondary assists as well as a goal in the game's last minute to improve his stats to 3-9-12.
Griffin Reinhart (NYI 2012 1st) returned to the Edmonton Oil Kings lineup with a primary assist on Edmonton's 7th goal as the Oil Kings built up a 7-0 lead after 2 periods before cruising to a 7-2 win over Kyle Burrough's (NYI 2013 7th) Regina Pats. Burroughs had 2 secondary assists on Regina's goals but they were way too little and way too late to matter.
Reinhart improves to 1-4-5 while Burroughs is 0-13-13.
Mackenzie Skapski (NYR 2013 6th) had a rough night as he gave up 6 goals on 38 shots as his Kootenay Ice were defeated by the Portland Winterhawks 6-3. Skapski ran into a very hot Winterhawk team that the win extended their winning streak to 7 games. Pretty sure that even if Skapski stood on his head that Portland would not have been denied the win.
Skapski is 5-4-2-0 2.15 goals against and 0.899 save percentage.
Ryan Pulock (NYI 2013 1st) had the primary assist on the Brandon Wheat King's only goal as they were smoked 7-1 by the Spokane Chiefs. Pulock improves to 4-6-10 on the season. We will catch Pulock when he hits Portland on Wednesday.
Loic Leduc (NYI 2012 4th) and his Cape Breton Screaming Eagles despite a 37-23 advantage in shots on goal lost to the Chicoutimi Saguenéens 5-4. This game really came down to one stat which was Alex Bureau giving up 4 goals on 9 shots in 19:09 of playing time. Leduc was scoreless on 2 shots and 1 hit.
Cristoval Nieves (NYR 2012 2nd) was scoreless as his 4th ranked Michigan Wolverines came from behind to defeat Doyle Somerby (NYI 2012 5th) and his 14th ranked Boston University 2-1. This game was part of the Big Ten/Hockey East Challenge and Michigan should say they escaped with this win as they held a 44-19 advantage in shots but had to rally in the 3rd period to earn the win.
Neither Nieves or Somerby scored for their team.
Jesse Graham (NYI 2012 6th) and his Niagara Ice Dogs dug themselves a 3-0 hole that they just could not recover from as they dropped a 3-2 decision to the Peterborough Petes. Graham was held scoreless for the Ice Dogs.
Eamon McAdam (NYI 2013 3rd) was a DNP for his Penn State Nittnay Lions as they tied RIT 3-3.