Brad Elliott Schlossman
Schlossman is in his 13th year covering college hockey for the Herald. In 2016 and 2018, he was named the top beat writer in the country by the Associated Press Sports Editors. He also was the NCHC's inaugural Media Excellence Award winner in 2018. Schlossman 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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The most physically imposing player at the North Dakota state boys high school hockey tournament in Ralph Engelstad Arena this weekend will be a tall, quiet, slender sophomore from Fargo. Off the ice, you may not peg Tyler Kleven to be such a feared defender. But in just his first year of varsity hockey, the Fargo Davies sophomore has already established a reputation as a punishing blue liner with the ability to score from the back end.
The Olympic Games ended for UND sophomore forward Ludvig Hoff early Wednesday morning after two weeks of building memories and experiences. From the Opening Ceremonies to playing in his first Olympic hockey game to helping his native Norway earn its first Olympic win since 1994 when his father was on the team to suiting up in the quarterfinals against former NHL superstar Ilya Kovalchuk, Hoff had an eventful run in Pyeongchang, South Korea.
Britta Curl has been one of the best hockey players in North Dakota for the past five years. She finished in the top five in the state in scoring as an eighth grader. She was second in the state as a freshman and she led North Dakota in scoring as a sophomore and a junior. Curl led the Bismarck Blizzard to state championships in each of the last three years. Her place in the state was cemented, but in January, she got to see where she stacks up with the rest of the world.
Michelle Karvinen added to her collection. Susanna Tapani and Emma Nuutinen started theirs. The three former UND women's hockey players earned Olympic bronze medals when their Finnish team beat the Olympic Athletes from Russia 3-2 early Wednesday morning. Tapani scored a goal and added an assist for Finland, while Karvinen set up Tapani's goal on the opening shift of the second period to lead the Finns.
It was quiet last summer at Cushman Field. The stands were empty. Nobody was there watching. Jocelyne and Monique Lamoureux sprinting around the track, working on their conditioning. Their old Grand Forks Central cross country coach, Sean Allan, happened to be there, too, working with two-time state champion Karly Ackley and Alexis Roehl. "They were training for regionals," Monique said. "They were training for something bigger than just Grand Forks Central cross country." So were the Lamoureux twins.
UND sophomore forward Ludvig Hoff had something big to celebrate Tuesday morning. Hoff helped Norway win its first Olympic men's hockey game since his father, Geir, was on the team at the 1994 Lillihammer Games. Norway upset Slovenia 2-1 in overtime to advance to the quarterfinal round of the Pyeongchang Games in South Korea. Norway now advances to play the tournament favorites, the Olympic Athletes from Russia, at 1:40 a.m. Wednesday. The victory was Norway's first since beating Austria 3-1 in a consolation game in 1994.
For the third straight Olympic Games, Grand Forks natives Jocelyne and Monique Lamoureux and Warroad’s Gigi Marvin will come home with a medal. This time, they hope it will be gold. The Lamoureuxs and Marvin sent the Americans back to the gold-medal game late Sunday night with a 5-0 win over Finland in the semifinals at the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea.
OMAHA, Neb.—Cam Johnson sat out the last two games. The senior goalie, who backstopped UND to the 2016 NCAA national championship, played the backup role with rookie Peter Thome earning back-to-back starts. But Johnson came back in on Saturday night and he delivered his best performance of the season. Johnson turned in a 26-save shutout in UND's 3-0 win over Omaha in Baxter Arena, shutting down the nation's most prolific home offense.
UND 3, Omaha 0
Colton Poolman doesn't closely track the Pairwise Rankings, but he knows what the UND men's hockey team needs to do. "We just have to win games at this point," the sophomore defenseman said. "That's the most important thing. (The Pairwise Rankings) are always in the back of your head, but the most important thing is winning games right now." That's what made Friday night's 6-3 loss to Omaha in Baxter Arena so deflating.