Around the Big Ten Hockey: Week 17
Host Logan Bourandas and analysgs Jack McCune and Andrew Field look back at some of the best series from the past week as well as the best series coming up this weekend.
After last weekend's action, there's a tie atop the Big Ten standings. The Michigan State Spartans sit level in first place with the Penn State Nittany Lions, after the two teams split against one another last weekend. Both Michigan State and Penn State now have 28 points on the season and a 9-6-1 conference record. The Spartans also climbed up two spots, from 19 to 17, in the USCHO.com rankings after the impressive showing against the Nittany Lions. Michigan State will take this weekend off before traveling to Minnesota to take on the Golden Gophers.
Meanwhile, the Nittany Lions regained some momentum in the final game of the Michigan State series. After an embarrassing sweep on home ice against Michigan and a rough 4-2 loss in game one against the Spartans, Penn State finally rebounded in game two. Freshman forward Connor McMenamin scored the game-winning goal for the Nittany Lions in overtime as Penn State got a 2-1 win when it needed it the most.
Penn State will return to State College this weekend for a Big Ten championship game rematch from a year ago against the Notre Dame Fighting Irish. Notre Dame and Penn State split the series last time they played in South Bend back on Dec. 13 and 14.
One of the more surprising results from a week ago came in Minneapolis, when the Ohio State Buckeyes came to town. With Penn State struggling, the door was wide open for the Buckeyes to extend its slim lead in the Big Ten standings. However, the Golden Gophers embarrassed the Buckeyes, winning 6-3 and 4-1 in a sweep. The sweep pushed Minnesota back up to .500 overall at 10-10-4 and only a point behind Notre Dame for fourth place in the conference. Ohio State will travel to Ann Arbor to take on a rested Michigan team while Minnesota travels to Madison to battle the Wisconsin Badgers.
It’s been a rough couple of months for both Notre Dame and Wisconsin. Earlier this season, both teams sat in the top ten of the rankings, but as of last week, they are both out of the polls altogether. While Wisconsin has become the bottom dweller of the Big Ten this year, Notre Dame is still receiving votes to rejoin the rankings. When the two teams matched up this past weekend, we saw glimpses of the early season success and what could’ve been for the Badgers. Wisconsin’s young guns dominated offensively in game one with a 6-4 win, as freshman forward Cole Caufield recorded a hat trick. The next day senior goaltender Cale Morris came to play for Notre Dame, saving 33/35 shots in a 5-2 victory for the Fighting Irish.
We are approaching the final month of the college hockey season. It should be a fun one, with the top five teams in the conference only separated by six points and many of those teams set to face off against one another.
Logan Bourandas is a freshman majoring in broadcast journalism. To contact him email email@example.com.
About the Contributors
Junior / Broadcast Journalism
Jack McCune is a junior majoring in broadcast journalism from Yardley, Pennsylvania, which is outside of Philly and just across the Delaware River from New Jersey. He attended Pennsbury High School in Fairless Hills, Pennsylvania. He’s a huge fan of the Eagles, Phillies, 76ers, Penn State football and Penn State basketball. He’s a producer for CommRadio news and is a writer and broadcaster for CommRadio sports. His CommRadio show, Broad Street Bros, airs Thursday nights at 8:45, as he and co-host Andrew Field talk about Philly and Penn State sports. He hopes to some day become a play-by-play announcer for football, basketball and/or baseball, and he is also interested in becoming a bartender.
Senior / Broadcast Journalism
Andrew Field is a senior from Haverford, Pennsylvania, which is actually right outside of Philly in the land of “Delco.” He is a huge Philly sports fan, as he has a passion and excitement for all four Philly teams and also all Penn State sports. He writes articles for the sports and arts & entertainment departments. He is the co-manager of the ad/sales team and has a weekly talk show called Broad Street Bros. He hopes to one day work in the sports industry or become a writer.
Sophomore / Broadcast Journalism