Friday, March 26, 2010

UMD #1 in Women's D-1 poll; USAHockey Sled team wins gold; National Championship tournaments underway











University of Minnesota Duluth Finishes Season No. 1 in
USA Today/USA Hockey Magazine Women's College Hockey Poll


COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. - The University of Minnesota Duluth, which last weekend defeated No. 4 University of Minnesota and No. 2 Cornell University en route to its fifth NCAA Division I championship, ends the season as the No. 1 team in the USA Today/USA Hockey Magazine Women's College Hockey Poll. The Bulldogs, who collected 190 points and all 19 first-place votes, are just the third team to hold the poll's top spot this season.

Cornell University (161), which capped its season with the program's first-ever trip to the NCAA Women's Frozen Four and a berth in the national title game, is No. 2. The remaining two NCAA Women's Frozen Four participants -- Mercyhurst College (157) and Minnesota (138) -- end the season at No. 3 and No. 4, respectively, while Clarkson University (108) rounds out the top five.

NOTES: Prior to this week's poll, Mercyhurst held the top spot for 22 straight polls. The University of Wisconsin, which was named the preseason No. 1, was the only other team to hold the No. 1 ranking ... Four teams remained on the poll throughout the entire season (Mercyhurst, Minnesota, Minnesota Duluth and the University of New Hampshire) ... Mercyhurst junior forward Vicki Bendus (Wasaga Beach, Ont.) was named the 13th annual Patty Kazmaier Memorial Award recipient on Saturday (March 20). An award of The USA Hockey Foundation, the Patty Kazmaier Memorial Award annually recognizes the top player in NCAA Division I women's ice hockey. More information on the Patty Kazmaier Memorial Award can be found at PattyKaz.com ... Hockey East boasts four ranked programs. ECAC Hockey has three ranked teams, while the Western Collegiate Hockey Association has two ranked programs. Mercyhurst is the only ranked College Hockey America team ... A total of 12 teams received votes.

ABOUT THE POLL: The 13th annual USA Today/USA Hockey Magazine Women’s College Hockey Poll is conducted each week in conjunction with the American Hockey Coaches Association. The poll includes input from coaches and journalists representing each of the four NCAA Division I ice hockey conferences, as well as composite votes from officers of the AHCA and USA Hockey Magazine, the most widely distributed hockey magazine in the world.

USA Today/USA Hockey Magazine
Women's College Hockey Poll - #24
(first-place votes in parentheses)

Rank School Last Poll's Ranking 2009-10 Record Weeks in Top 10
1 University of Minnesota Duluth, 190 (19) 2 31-8-2 24
2 Cornell University, 161 4 21-9-6 15
3 Mercyhurst College, 157 1 30-3-3 24
4 University of Minnesota, 138 3 26-9-5 24
5 Clarkson University, 108 6 23-12-5 23
6 University of New Hampshire, 99 7 19-9-5 24
7 Harvard University, 73 5 20-8-5 23
8 Boston University, 52 8 17-9-12 13
9 University of Connecticut, 33 9 21-9-7 11
10 Providence College, 17 NR 15-11-9 8

Others receiving votes: Northeastern University, 12; Quinnipiac University, 5.

************************************************

VANCOUVER, B.C. - The U.S. Paralympic Sled Hockey Team won its second-ever gold medal at the 2010 Paralympic Winter Games thanks to a 2-0 shutout victory over Japan this afternoon. Team USA did not surrender a goal in all five of its games at the tournament, outscoring its opponents, 19-0.

With the victory, the U.S. becomes the first-ever team to claim its second Paralympic Winter Games sled hockey gold medal. Team USA last won gold at the 2002 Paralympic Winter Games in Salt Lake City, Utah.

"I could not be more proud of our players," said Ray Maluta, head coach of the U.S. Paralympic Sled Hockey Team. "These guys have given us so much over the last few years to get to this point. They've grown as athletes, players and men, and I'm lucky to have been a part of this ride."

Team USA took a 1-0 lead four minutes into the first period on the power play. Joe Howard (Kingston, Mass.) fired a shot towards the front of the net, where it was stopped by Japan goalie Mitsuru Nagase. During the ensuing scramble, Alexi Salamone (Grand Island, N.Y.) located the loose rebound, dragged the puck out of traffic and flipped a backhand shot over the sprawling goaltender.

Japan nearly tied the game early in the second period when Andy Yohe (Bettendorf, Iowa) was whistled for interfering with a breakaway, leading to a penalty shot. Japan captain Takayuki Endo snapped a shot towards the top right corner of the net, but was denied by the glove of U.S. goalie Steve Cash (Overland, Mo.).

Following a flurry of chances for Japan in the third period, the U.S. put the game away on the power play with less than two minutes remaining. Howard threw a shot low towards the front of the goal where Taylor Lipsett (Mesquite, Texas) was parked. Team USA's leading scorer redirected the puck under the sled of Nagase for his fifth goal of the tournament and the United States' second power-play goal of the night.

Cash finished the night with five saves, and stopped all 33 shots faced in five games played at the tournament.

NOTES: Taylor Chace (Hampton Falls, N.H.) was named the top defenseman of the tournament, while Steve Cash was named the top goaltender by the tournament directorate ... Team USA went 2-for-3 on the power play, while Japan was 0-for-3 with the man advantage ... The U.S. scored a power-play goal in all five of its games ... The U.S. allowed double-digit shots against only once in five games at the tournament (12 - March 18 vs. Norway) ... Team USA, with an average age of 23.8, was the youngest team at the tournament by nearly seven years (Canada - 30.7) ... Sweden (1994), Norway (1998), and Canada (2006) are the other gold-medal winners of past Paralympic Winter Games sled hockey tournaments ... Last night (March 19), Norway defeated Canada, 2-1, to claim the bronze medal ... Several members of the 2010 U.S. Olympic Men's Ice Hockey Team sent e-mails of support to the U.S. Paralympic Sled Hockey Team, including Chris Drury, Jamie Langenbrunner, head coach Ron Wilson and general manager Brian Burke ... The U.S. Paralympic Sled Hockey Team captured the bronze medal at the 2006 Paralympic Winter Games in Torino, Italy ... Full coverage of the U.S. Paralympic Sled Hockey Team, including a team roster, photos, features, and game notes are available at usahockey.com … The 2010 U.S. Paralympic Sled Hockey Team, consisting of 15 of the 18 members of the 2009-10 U.S. National Sled Hockey Team, was named in December.

GAME SUMMARY

Scoring By Period

JPN 0 - 0 - 0 - 0
USA 1 - 0 - 1 - 2

First Period - Scoring: 1, USA, Salmone (Howard, Lipsett), 4:10 (pp). Penalties: JPN, Misawa (interference), 2:22; USA, Yohe (elbowing), 4:44; USA, Howard (roughing), 11:47.

Second Period - Scoring: None. Penalties: USA, Yohe (interference), 1:40.

Third Period - Scoring: 2, USA, Lipsett (Howard), 13:42 (pp). Penalties: JPN, Ishida (roughing), 4:56; USA, Lipsett (interference), 6:31; JPN, Ito (holding), 13:05.



Shots by Period 1 2 3 Total
JPN 1 0 4 5
USA 5 6 5 16

Goaltenders (SH/SV) 1 2 3 Total
JPN, Nagase 45:00 5-4 6-6 5-4 16-14
USA, Cash 45:00 1-1 0-0 4-4 5-5

Power Play: JPN 0-3; USA 2-3
Penalties: JPN 3-6; USA 3-6
Officials: Petter Vojan Hegle (referee); Steven Richardson (linesman), Toode Maksim (linesman)
Attendance: 5,810


Team USA 2010 Paralympic Winter Games Results
March 13-20 - Vancouver, B.C.


Date Opponent Result
Sat., March 13 South Korea W, 5-0
Sun., March 14 Czech Republic W, 3-0
Tues., March 16 Japan W, 6-0
Thurs., March 18 Norway (Semifinals) W, 3-0
Sat., March 20 Japan (Gold-Medal Game) W, 2-0

************************************************

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – The 2010 USA Hockey National Championships begin this week with the Tier III Junior A, B & C National Championships in Marlborough, Mass., on Thursday (March 25) and the Women's National Championships in Green Bay, Wis., on Friday (March 26). In total, 31 champions will be crowned at the youth, girls', high school, junior, women's and adult levels in 13 cities across America.

2010 USA Hockey National Championships Schedule
Tier III Junior National Championships

Date Classification Site
March 25-30 Tier III A, B & C Marlborough, Mass.

Youth, Girls' & Women's National Championships
presented by Easton and McDonald's

Date Classification Site
March 26-28 Women's Green Bay, Wis.
April 7-11 Girls' Tier I (all divisions) Green Bay, Wis.
April 7-11 Girls' Tier II (all divisions) East Lansing, Mich.
April 7-11 Youth Tier I (12U, 14U) Buffalo, N.Y.
April 7-11 Youth Tier I (16U, 18U) Woodridge, Ill.
April 7-11 Youth Tier II 12 & Under Reston, Va.
April 7-11 Youth Tier II 14 & Under Wayne, N.J.
April 7-11 Youth Tier II 16 & Under West Chester, Pa.
April 7-11 Youth Tier II 18 & Under Rochester, N.Y.

Adult National Championships
presented by Labatt Blue


Date Classification Site
April 8-11 U.S. Checking Fond du Lac, Wis.
April 15-18 30 & Over Non-Checking Tampa, Fla.
April 15-18 40 & Over Non-Checking
Tampa, Fla.
April 22-25 50 & Over Non-Checking Tampa, Fla.
April 22-25 60 & Over Non-Checking Tampa, Fla.
April 29-May 2 Women's Recreational 40 & Over Ellenton, Fla.
April 29-May 2 Women's Recreational 50 & Over Ellenton, Fla.

High School National Championship


Date Classification Site
April 14-18 Varsity Bensenville, Ill.


The USA Hockey National Championships welcome teams from various levels and each of USA Hockey’s 12 districts to compete for a national title.

The Youth Tier I and Tier II divisions include competition in the 18 & Under, 16 & Under, 14 & Under and 12 & Under age classifications. Girls’ age levels include 19 & Under, 16 & Under, 14 & Under and 12 & Under. Women’s teams will compete in the Senior A, B, C and 30 & Over categories. Each of the 20 Youth, Girls’ and Women’s National Championships is presented by Easton and McDonald's.

In addition, USA Hockey will host the 2010 Labatt Blue/USA Hockey Adult National Championships. These tournaments will feature seven classifications in three cities across the country, beginning on April 8 with the U.S. Checking National Championship in Fond du Lac, Wis. National championships will also be competed for at the 30 & Over, 40 & Over, 50 & Over and 60 & Over non-checking classifications, as well as the Women's Recreational 40 & Over and 50 & Over divisions.

Also included in this year's national championship slate is a newly created high school national championship.

USAHockey.com will provide live scoring, stats and standings from each of the Youth, Women’s and Girls’ USA Hockey National Championship sites. Additionally, USAHockey.com will also accept user-submitted photos and publish them throughout the tournament. Photos can be submitted at photos@usahockey.org.

USA Hockey, in partnership with FASTHockey, will provide live streaming coverage of the upcoming USA Hockey National Championships. Games will be offered on a pay-per-view basis. FASTHockey uses a unique game-credit system for viewing games, offering discounts to customers who watch multiple games. Users who want to watch one or more games must first sign up for a free account at USAHockey.FASTHockey.com. Users can then buy game credits - a single game ranges from $6.99 (when one game credit is purchased) to $3.99 (when 100 game credits are purchased). Game credits can be used to watch live games or archives on-demand and never expire. In addition, games will be available for purchase on DVD and/or USB sticks at USAHockey.FASTHockey.com.

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