Brad Elliott Schlossman
Schlossman is in his 13th year covering college hockey for the Herald. In 2016, he was named the top beat writer in the country by the Associated Press Sports Editors. He has voted in the national college hockey poll since 2007 and has served as a member of the Hobey Baker and Patty Kazmaier Award committees.
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Their names were called early and often. A total of six UND recruits were selected in the NHL draft in June. No college hockey program had more players taken in the seven-round event. Three of them are on campus now -- forwards David Toews and Brett Hextall and defenseman Corey Fienhage. The other three won't come until next season. They are forward Danny Kristo and defensemen Andrew MacWilliam and Joe Gleason. Kristo was taken the highest.
Chris Porter took a blistering slap shot in the foot last winter, leaving it bruised and fractured. If he had his way, the streak would have been over. "If I could have, I would have sat out the next game," said the former UND captain, who was playing with the Peoria Rivermen in the American Hockey League. "The way things happened, guys were sick and other guys couldn't play, so I did my best to play.
The Zajac family hockey path -- play midgets in Winnipeg, juniors in Salmon Arm and college at UND -- is about to be broken. The third Zajac brother, 20-year-old Kelly, is enrolled at Union College in Schenectady, N.Y., and he'll play forward for the Dutchmen beginning this month. He will be the first of four hockey-playing brothers not to play for the Sioux. The oldest, Travis, was a Sioux standout from 2004-06. He finished second on the team in scoring twice before moving on to the NHL's New Jersey Devils. The second Zajac son, Darcy, is a junior on this year's Sioux team.
Hunter Bishop left UND in December 2006, midway through his freshman year. He wasn't playing a lot -- only four times in the team's first 16 games -- and he figured his ice time wouldn't increase much in the next two seasons. So, Bishop went back to his junior team, the Vernon Vipers of the British Columbia Hockey League, while he searched for a better collegiate fit. The Fairbanks, Alaska, native hopes that Ohio State is it. Bishop has enrolled at the Central Collegiate Hockey Association school and will resume his hockey career next weekend when the Buckeyes take on Miami-Ohio. "I feel
UND's annual roadblock doesn't look like it's going anywhere. Boston College, the team that's defeated the Sioux in three consecutive Frozen Four semifinals, has been ranked No. 1 in the USA Today preseason poll.
Last week, Bemidji State officials said they were elated to land the College Hockey America postseason tournament. Better yet, the tournament will mean something. The NCAA recently ruled that the CHA can keep its automatic bid for the NCAA tournament, despite only having four members. A conference is supposed to have at least six members to receive the automatic bid, but the CHA has gotten a reprieve for the second time in three years. In summer 2006, Air Force left the league to join Atlantic Hockey, dropping the CHA down to five teams.
Brent Olson had a chance to leave the Air Force Academy, no strings attached, after his sophomore year. And why wouldn't he? Hockey wasn't going well. He didn't score a goal as a freshman and only had one as a sophomore. School was going worse. The Baudette, Minn., native didn't even get to finish his second season because he failed a couple of classes and was declared academically ineligible. "I was pretty much on the doorstep of getting the boot," Olson said. An academic review committee met with Olson and told him to leave the hockey team.
When the Air Force Academy medical board denied Jacques Lamoureux's enrollment two years ago, he chalked it up as a minor setback -- nothing to get too worried about. After all, Lamoureux had fought much larger battles and come out on top. This one was no different. The former Grand Forks Central hockey player went to another college for a year and never gave up his dream to go to Air Force, though Falcons coach Frank Serratore admitted, "I didn't think he had a hope in hell to get in the second time around." Lamoureux tried again, succeeded, and now two-and-a-half years after the Air Forc
Scoring has plummeted in college hockey.
For the first time since Dave Hakstol took over as UND coach in 2004, another conference lost as many players early to the pros as the Western Collegiate Hockey Association. Both the WCHA and Central Collegiate Hockey Association saw 11 players give up remaining college eligibility to sign pro deals this summer. The number is an increase for the CCHA, which lost five players in 2006 and nine players in 2007.